Team Out of Town Blog Hub (Outoftownblog.com) – The City of Legazpi, home to the iconic Mayon Volcano, sizzles once more as it hosts the inaugural staging of the Exciting Bicol Oz Goose National Championships on Feb. 26-27. A first in the region, the event is organized by the Albay Yacht Club (AYC) and the Philippine Home Boatbuilders Yacht Club (PHBYC). The Department of Tourism Region 5 and the City Government of Legazpi.
Set at the Albay Gulf across Legazpi Boulevard, the two-day sailfest will launch Bicol as the archipelago’s newest sailing haven.
Competing for top honors and fun sailing will be 31 Oz Goose sailboats from Subic, Batangas, Manila, and Albay.
“Bicol has been gaining in popularity with the country’s water sports enthusiasts, from wakeboarders, surfers, paddlers, scuba divers, and now, sailors. Its natural beauty is its main appeal, the people’s warm hospitality in embracing watersports compound its overall charm,” says DOT regional director Herbie Aguas.
He said that potential sailing spots will be explored in the nearby provinces to make it a community sport and help breed a new generation of watersports athletes.
Meanwhile, Legazpi mayor Noel Rosal welcomed the sporting event, saying sailing will be an additional recreational activity in the City of Fun and Adventure.
“The Oz Goose sailboat sails is an ideal platform to teach people the essential skills involved in sailing, from weather awareness to basic physics. Racing sailboats is the best way to improve one’s sailing skills,” says PHBYC executive director and event organizer Roy Espiritu.
He noted that this boat type is cheap and easy to assemble, and has a huge potential to bring recreational sailing to various parts of the archipelago. Introduced in the Philippines in 2015, there are about 100 Oz Goose boats in the country at its base at the Taal Lake Yacht Club (TLYC) in Talisay town, the AYC in Legazpi, and various boat clubs.
The Oz Goose is a 12-foot long wind-powered sailboat with a 14-foot mast and crewed by two persons.
Small boat sailing has been gaining popularity in Legazpi in recent years, largely through the efforts of city councilor Fernand Imperial, who is also a sailing crew of the Subic-based Team Windshear team.
The Exciting Bicol Oz Goose Nationals is also supported by Kress Philippines, Toyota Albay, Hyde Sails Cebu, Imperial Homes, Pacific Blue Dive Center; hotel partners Proxy by The Oriental, Legazpi Oceanfront Hostel, Hotel Sentro, and RRCG Transport as the official carrier.