Andy Schell of World Cruising catches Altair’s linesThe Caribbean 1500 fleet has been arriving this week and only two boats are left at sea.  While Moonshadow and Coulicou were closing in on Tortola this morning, rally participants in Nanny Cay were given an in-depth seminar about cruising the BVI with Henry from Horizon Yachts Charters. The Horizon “Chart Room” here at Nanny Cay is filled with photos and charts of the best anchorages, bars, restaurants and hot spots in the BVI, and Henry let everyone in on his secrets.

Avanti, the only double-handed yacht in this year’s 1500, crossed the finish line after dark last night, and anchored out not far away from Nanny Cay.

“We’re doing fine,” said Jeremi on the radio this morning. “We’ll put on the new mainsail, tidy up a bit and come on over to join you this afternoon!”

Some 40 people signed up for an island tour today – a first in the 1500 where participants World Cruising staff will get a chance to explore Tortola outside Nanny Cay.

The program continues this evening with another pizza happy hour on the beach. Event Manager Andy Schell’s seminar on his favorite Caribbean spots outside the BVI is coming up tomorrow, with the final Prizegiving Ceremony and dinner set for Friday night.

Wings, the Hylas 54 from Annapolis, MD, took line honors early on Monday morning, closely edging perennial favorite Habits of Health, a Moody 54. The crew of four arrived early in the morning too and enjoyed the first rum punch of 2012 on the dock.

“We had a great passage,” said skipper Howard. “Only one bumpy night and smooth sailing the rest of the way!”

Miles and Anne Poor from Karina, echoed a similar sentiment when they arrived a few hours later, after the dawn.

“The second night out was a little hairy,” said Miles, “but nothing too bad. It really just reminded us that we were ocean sailing!” he joked. “But the rest of the way down was just gorgeous, perfect sailing.”

By the afternoon five boats had arrived at the marina.  Miles and Brendan did a fast turnaround to get the marina ready in time for the event’s arrival. The day before the docks were full for the annual BVI Charter Yacht Show.

“We cleared them out pretty quick,” said Miles. “Brendan did a great job. You’d never have known it by the way it looks now.”

Caribbean 1500 boats are tied up together wherever possible, mostly on the A and B pontoons at Nanny Cay, and within spitting distance of Peg Legs Restaurant and the ever popular beach bar.