At the Caribbean NOOD Rendezvous, All's Good Mon

On-site reporting from the British Virgin Islands

Carib NOOD 06 1

Daniel Forster/rolex (all But Last Photo), Dan Nerney/new York Yc

After two days of racing at the 2006 Lands' End Caribbean NOOD Championship, John Storck and his all-family crew from Long Island, N.Y., lead the seven-boat fleet. At Sunday evening's post-race barbeque at the Bitter End YC in Virgin Gorda, B.V.I., however, the standings hardly mattered (to some at least).The first thing on everyone's mind was just how good it is to be here in paradise. The NOOD Championship pits the winners of each NOOD event against one another in a championship of champions. But for most competitors, victory came the moment they bounced onto the runway at Tortola's Beef Island airport. At the skipper's meeting on Saturday morning, before the racing got underway, race manager Peter Reggio commanded, "I want you all to take every serious bone in your body, and break it."The sailors were quick to heed Reggio's call. Following the first of two buoy races later that afternoon, Damien Emery, from Team Larchmont, executed a perfect back flip off of the stern of his team's Beneteau 393. During the distance race from Trellis Bay to Gorda Sound on Sunday, Doug Weekly, Team Texas' leader, demonstrated a keen ability to steer with his foot while occupying his hands with twin bottles of Red Stripe. Although the competition is casual, sailors are still pushing whatever they can get out of their cruising-optimized charter setups (a challenge in and unto itself). For Sunday's point-to-point race, teams were required to tow their dinghies. The Toronto team came up with a clever plan to reduce drag by strapping their dinghy to the transom with the 393's unused topping lift. Reggio vetoed the invention with a pilot radio hail, but event manager George Brengle recognized the Canadians' ingenuity by presenting them with an award for their innovative thinking.For Bobby Storck, who crews for his uncle, frontrunner John Storck, the Caribbean Championship is like the pot of gold at the end of the NOOD rainbow. "When we won in St. Petersburg (Florida) in February, we had no idea there was a trip to the B.V.I. at stake," said Storck after watching his cousin Eric clean house in the Laser racing portion at the Bitter End YC. "Now that we've seen what's in store for the winners, we'll be sailing that much harder at next year's NOOD."The regatta concludes on Monday with one final race from the Baths at Virgin Gorda to Norman Island. Standings:Place Skipper NOOD Champion Race 1 Race 2 Race 3 Race 4 Total1. Storck St. Petersburg 2 1 1 0.1 4.12. Marshall Detroit 1 3 3 0.4 7.43. Reid Toronto 3 2 6 0.3 11.34. Gorman Marblehead 4 5 4 0.5 13.55. Begley Larchmont 5 6 2 0.7 13.76. Weekly Houston 6 4 5 0.2 15.27. SW --- 7 7 7 0.6 21.6