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Mir bathed in evening sunlight

SCF Black Sea Tall Ships Regatta 2016: All Good Things Come to an End

October 5, 2016

The SCF Black Sea Tall Ships Regatta 2016 drew to a

close today (Tuesday 4 October) with a weather-delayed Parade of Sail

along the coast of Varna. Heavy on-shore winds meant that many of the

ships required assistance by tugs to take them off the quay.

Despite

the weather, many people turned out to see them leave, most on the sea

walls and beaches, but some on the water in local yachts and pleasure

craft. The procession of ships each passed a saluting vessel, before

heading off to their next destination. Some have only short passages to

make, others will be sailing hundreds of miles. Amid the dark and stormy

skies, the sun broke through dramatically just as Mir (Russia), winner of Class A in all three races, approached the saluting vessel.

It

is now time to reflect on the events of the last four weeks. The

experience of the four host ports, all so different and all managed by

hard working teams of professionals with an army of volunteers, without

which, these events could not run.

Hot, sunny weather, torrential rain and thunder storms, light winds, heavy winds, no winds, we had everything!

The

ships, of course, again all so different but all with the sail training

spirit at their heart. The trainees and crews have had incredible, and

in some cases life changing, experiences they will never forget. And so

have the hundreds of thousands of visitors to the ports, who have walked

around the decks, taken selfies at the wheel, rung the ships’ bells,

and perhaps gone away inspired to try a voyage themselves.

A final word from Race Chairman Robin Snouck Hurgronje:

“I

want to thank all the ships for their contribution to the Regatta. They

were the beating heart of the SCF Black Sea Tall Ships Regatta 2016.

Fair winds and following seas!”

So Why Does Sail Training International Run These Events?

STI

has as its mission, the development and education of young people

through the sail training experience, regardless of nationality,

culture, religion, gender, or social background. We asked some trainees

and crew members on each ship how they feel about their time on board,

about leaving at the end of the Regatta, and how this experience has

affected their lives. This is what they told us:

Kaliakra:

Niki, 19, trainee:

“I

go back to school tomorrow. I can’t wait to tell my schoolmates about

the Regatta. I’m very happy that I was able to take part for the second

time, after Black Sea Tall Ships 2014.

It’s much more interesting

here, in a working environment one can really learn. I prefer this way

of studying. There is good team work and mutual understanding, if you

need there is always someone to show you and tell you how things should

be done. It is great place to have your training.”

Ioana, 21 years old, trainee

“It

was a great experience with great people! At first time I wasn’t really

sure if I wanted to go on that trip but now I really don’t want it to

end.”

Mir:

Dimitrii, 21, crew member:

“I’m

really glad to have participated in Tall Ships, it was very unusual

experience. We had such strong pressure in the sails and it took courage

and strength but we managed to win and I feel very proud and satisfied

to have been part of the crew.

This voyage has changed my entire

mindset. It gave me a lot of sailing experience, but als

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