Newport braces itself

New York Yacht Club's 155th Annual Regatta sets sail next week

Friday June 5th 2009, Author: Barby MacGowan, Location: United Kingdom
Now that it’s June, boats are in the water, sailing boots are out of the closet, and the New York Yacht Club 155th Annual Regatta presented by Rolex is whipping up enthusiasm for its 2009 edition, set for Friday, June 12, through Sunday, June 14. Entries for this, the longest-running regatta in America, are due no later than 1700 on June 8, and with 93 boats already registered, there looks to be plenty of well-rounded racing in store for racers.

For starters, all types of boats are feeding into the event from this week’s Annapolis Newport Race and Leukemia Cup, both of which have New York Yacht Club assistance on the race management front. The IRC count is over 40, making this the largest contingent, and then there are One-Designs, Classics, 12 Metres, 6 Metres and PHRF to round out the fleet. The 12 and 6 Metres are both prepping for their Worlds in the fall here, while the J/122s are warming up for their North Americans later in June at Storm Trysail Club’s Block Island Race Week, another fine event presented by Rolex. As well, the NYYC Club Swan 42s - 15 of them - will use the NYYC Annual Regatta in June and the Swan 42 Nationals in July as a qualifying series to determine which Corinthian (amateur) NYYC team will represent the club against 18 yacht clubs from around the world at the NYYC Invitational Cup in mid-September.

“You just couldn’t ask for a more diverse bunch of sailors,” said Rives Potts, who will sail his 48ft custom sloop Carina in IRC class, adding that no regatta is complete without power names, which for this event include:

- Rambler (Custom 90, George David, Hartford, Conn.),
- Titan (R/P 75, Tom & Dotty Hill, San Juan, PR)
- Rosebud (STP65 Roger Sturgeon, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.)
- Privateer (Cookson 50, Ron O’Hanely, Boston, Mass)
- Chippewa (Swan 68, Clay Deutsch, Newport, R.I.)
- Lora Ann (Express 37, Richard du Moulin, Larchmont, N.Y.).

As for format, there’s a bit of something for everyone when it comes to a compelling Around-the-Island (Conanicut) Race on Friday, June 12, followed by buoy racing on Saturday and Sunday, June 13-14. Friday’s race requires no registration fee and does not count towards weekend scores; the weekend racing, where a 'Best Boat of the Day' on each racing circle has been added, is held on Rhode Island Sound or 'up the Bay', depending on the wind, which likes to crank this time of year. A Skippers Meeting on Friday evening doubles as the prize giving for class winners of the Around-the-Island Race and a forum for Sailors For the Sea, an organization that raise awareness of marine environmental issues.

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