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March Racing Preview

Northern California

Many Midwinter Series will sail their final races in March. You can find a pretty darn comprehensive list in our Calendar. At least one Beer Can Series will begin in March. Wednesday night racing in Santa Cruz resumes as soon as Daylight Saving Time begins. Thus, the first beer can there will be on March 13.

Khimaira, Gentoo and California Condor at Alcatraz
A stately counterclockwise rounding of Alcatraz in last year’s Big Daddy pursuit race.
© 2019

On March 9-10 Richmond Yacht Club‘s Big Daddy Regatta, billing itself as a ‘Performance Tune-up’, will be the first big regatta of the spring season. On the same weekend, the California Dreamin’ Match Racing Series will kick off at St. Francis YC. StFYC will then host a Nacra 15 World Youth Qualifier on March 22-24. The Nacra 15 is the youth version of the Olympic-class Nacra 17 catamaran.

Among interesting events to choose from on March 23 are Sausalito YC‘s Jaws Pursuit Race, with starts and finishes off the clubhouse deck in Richardson Bay, and Oakland YC‘s Rites of Spring for singlehanders, doublehanders and full crews. StFYC will host Spring Dinghy on March 23-24.

Boats sailing around the Farallones
Is a rounding of the Farallones on your bucket list?
© 2019 Jennifer McKenna

BAMA’s 40th Doublehanded Farallones Race will kick off the ocean racing season on March 30. Those preferring the more sheltered waters of the Oakland-Alameda Estuary can sail in Island YC’s Sadie Hawkins Race that day — with the caveat that a woman must be at the helm. Farther inland, Folsom Lake YC will host the Trans-Folsom Regatta.

Southern California

The Port of Los Angeles Harbor Cup on March 8-10 will see the US Naval Academy Midshipmen returning to defend their 2018 title. Also returning are 2018 runner-up UC Santa Barbara and five-time champion Cal Maritime Academy. Cal Maritime and LAYC co-host using Long Beach Sailing Foundation’s matched Catalina 37s. Gary Jobson will speak on Saturday evening. “I’ve been amazed to witness how the whole regatta comes together,” said LAYC commodore Marie Rogers. “First, the anticipation as Cal Maritime goes through the invitation vetting process. Then, the hubbub that ensues as LAYC members vie to house certain teams in their yachts or homes. When the kids arrive — often straight from the airport, in the middle of the night — they imbue our clubhouse with their distinctive, youthful exuberance.”

Gauchos on Catalina 37
The UCSB Gauchos prepare to set the kite in last year’s Harbor Cup.
© 2019 Bronny Daniels / Joysailing

Fresh off a record-breaking performance in the RORC Caribbean 600, Giovanni Soldini’s Multi70 Maserati entered NHYC’s Newport to Cabo Race last week. Entries range in size from a Hobie 33 to Rio100. Starts will go off on March 14-17, with the trophy presentation scheduled for March 21.

This Maserati is 70 feet and three hulls of speed machine.
© 2019 Ted Martin

San Diego YC and Coronado YC will host a multitude of fleets for the San Diego NOOD Regatta on March 15-17. California YC in Marina del Rey will host the Laser Midwinters West on March 21-24. Long Beach YC will launch a flurry of match-racing regattas starting with the Butler Cup on March 23-24. That will be followed  on March 29-31 by the Ficker Cup, a qualifier for April’s Congressional Cup.

Kiteboarders are invited to the Kiteboard Pan American Trials in Formula Kites hosted by SDYC on March 29-31. An expected 12-15 kiteboarders will compete in a series of races off Crown Cove on Silver Strand State Beach in Coronado. World Sailing has confirmed kiteboarding as one of the 10 sailing events at the Paris 2024 Olympics. A key first step for aspiring Olympian kiters will be to represent their country at the Pan Am Games in Lima, Peru, this summer.

The America’s Schooner Cup will be hosted by Silver Gate YC in San Diego on March 30. See Friday’s ‘Lectronic for a more complete preview of that delicious slice of maritime heritage.

For many more regattas and sailing-related events, be sure to turn to the Calendar when the March issue of Latitude 38 comes out on Friday, March 1.

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