Brotherhood of International Mark Boat Operators


2020 SAYRA BIMBO Award

As the SAYRA Race Management Chair, I consult closely with the BIMBO Selection Committee and am extremely proud today to present the 2020 SAYRA – Brotherhood of International Markboat Operators Award for excellence in volunteering for Race Committee.  This is award was first presented to Grady Foster in 2011 and today we will be presenting the award to some very well deserving recipients.

Interestingly, the Brotherhood was formed at one of our Sister Cities, Savannah, GA, in preparation for the 1996 Sailing Olympic Games.  According to official documents, after a very difficult day in very big seas, a group of mark boat operators banded together and issued a set of demands to the Olympic Race Officials.  It is unclear whether their demands were met but in any event this banding together formed the nidus for the Brotherhood affectionately known at the BIMBO’s.


Currently there are members and chapters all over the world making sure PRO’s look good.  The organization is complete with a website that’s headquartered in the Netherlands and even has a Facebook page.  After nominations are made, the Selection Committee sends the year’s award winner’s name by carrier pigeon prior to SAYRA Annual General Meeting.


It is certainly no secret that the COVID pandemic had a significant impact on the sport of sailing but in light of no big events, flashy regattas and traveling I think it is important to recognize the grass roots aspect of sailing for 2020.  Sailing at a local SAYRA club dramatically increased during the pandemic because of the dedication of this year’s recipients.


This year’s recipients ran many races mostly with very little RC assets by using fixed marks, creative courses and social distance approach.  With a Portsmouth series, Fleet Racing and all the club sailing events this Team was a fixture with over 80 races completed in 2020.  This dedication to making racing happen at LLSC last year in light of the pandemic has made our sailing stronger as we enter 2021 and we can’t thank these individuals enough for their support and perseverance to make sailing happen!


As a small token of thanks each recipient of this year’s award will be receiving a $25 gift certificate to West Marine as we thank them for the dedication to our sport.


Please join me in congratulating the team of Pat Finnick, Cathy Freeman and Jeff Lehman from LLSC as the recipients of the 2020 BIMBO Award.  We thank these great volunteers!


Past recipients of the SAYRA B.I.M.B.O Award:

2011 - Grady Foster

2015 - Johnny Doterer

2017 - Grayson Carter

2018 - Ned Stender

2019 - Van Kinnett

2020 - Team LLSC (Jeff Lehman, Pat Finnick, Cathy Freeman)

2021 - Who will it be???