Two goes into one
For 25 years Long Beach Race Week has been a staple of the venue's peak racing season, running a week or two ahead of the independently produced and popular event known in recent years as North Sails Race Week. However, after his 20th regatta in June producer Bruce Golison announced he was closing the operation.
Now there will be one instead of two major regattas in June - but bigger and better than either is the plan under the umbrella of two clubs renowned worldwide for their strong racing programs.
"We're upgrading our regatta to fill the void," said Randy Smith, co-chairman and LBYC's point man on the executive committee that includes three members from each club. "Utilizing the facilities, regatta management and infrastructure of both clubs, the goal is to become the largest, most prestigious yacht club-run event in Southern California."
Smith's co-chair is ABYC Commodore Kevin Ellis, who said, "We're very excited. We have worked together for years, and this degree of combining resources is taking it to the next level."
As before there will be three days of racing, overseen by competition chairman Mark Townsend and Sandy Toscan of ABYC. Post-race activities will be at hosted at both clubs with water taxi service available.
Organizers anticipate participation by approximately 150 boats, including Transpac 52, Farr 40, J/Boat one-design classes, 1D35, Schock 35, Catalina 37, Express 37, Cal 25, Santana 20 and other invited or approved classes. Buoy and random leg classes will be offered in PHRF competition.
Smith said, "We hope to create a 'Grand Prix' Random Leg class for larger yachts in town for the 2005 Transpacific Yacht Race. They won't want to bash around a two-mile buoy course, but they may wish to do some 25-mile random leg stuff to get tuned up for Transpac."
The event schedule, logistical Information and Notice of Race are scheduled for posting in November at www.LBYC.org and www.ABYC.org.