With three days of sailing complete at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, the team from the US Virgin Islands is in eighth position in the disability sonar class.
In their first race, the Virgin Islands finished seventh. They retired in the second race. They finished seventh in their third race, eighth in their fourth race, sixth in their fifth race and sixth again in their sixth race. They have 45 total points with a net of 34 points, well behind the first place United States boat crewed by Alphonsus Doerr, Brad Kendell and Hugh Freund who have 15 total points with a net of 11 points. The Virgin Islands sit directly behind another US boat crewed by Andrew Fisher, Bradley Johnson, Michael Hersey who have 43 points and a net of 32.
The team includes David Flaherty, Antonio Sanpere, and the St. Thomas based Jim Kerr. They arrived in Miami ahead of the competition last Wednesday. They are currently working on qualifying for the 2016 Summer Paralympics. Their efforts earned them a mention on the front page of The Virgin Islands Daily News and a long write-up in September of last year. The Virgin Islands disability sailing team’s first competition was in Rhode Island where they won a bronze. The team’s first major international competition was the IFDS World Championships in Halifax in August of last year. The team was put together after Olympic sailor John Foster saw the sport emerging on the global level following the London Games.
The Virgin Islands do not have much depth in Paralympic sport. The country only made its debut at the Paralympic Games in 2012, where they were represented by equestrian Lee Frawley who finished fourteenth in the Individual Championship IV and Individual Freestyle IV events. Though born and raised in the Virgin Islands, at the time Frawley was living in the United Kingdom.