This week we're headed to Martha's Vineyard for Edgartown Yacht Club Race Weekend! Now in it's 79th year, this New England tradition has seen a huge increase in registrations for this year's buoy racing and signature 56-mile ‘Round-the-Island Race.
Set for this Thursday through Saturday (July 20-22), more than 70 teams – including many veterans and 16 new teams – had early access to moorings through a collaboration of Edgartown Yacht Club, Dockwa, and Edgartown Harbor. “We put extra effort into helping people with mooring reservations this year and getting them signed up early,” said Event Chair Hal Findlay. “It’s really an event where people have so much fun, and they spread the word to others about it and how wonderful the Vineyard is to visit.”
Captain Bob Snyder knows the event well. An Edgartown local who has participated in Edgartown Race Weekend close to 20 times, this year he's switching to a cruising spinnaker class after having sailed his Little Harbor 53 Resolute for 14 years in non-spinnaker for the 'Round the Island Race.
With a first warning signal at 8 a.m. Saturday morning, both the cruising and racing yachts typically finish by late afternoon or early Saturday evening. In the morning, the fleet sails between Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket along the east beach of Chappaquiddick. At midday they are in the open Atlantic Ocean with views of the south coast of the Vineyard. In the afternoon, rounding the cliffs of Gay Head, the fleet sails up Vineyard Sound. If the tidal currents or wind conditions make going slow, the Race Committee may shorten course to finish just north of Menemsha.
“Just going along the south shore is a real treat that not many people get to enjoy, because cruising sailors usually stick to the Sounds and Cape Cod Bay," said Snyder.
While Snyder is a local diehard, more teams come from off-island. Arthur Santry, of Arlington, Va. and Newport, will be one to beat in both the ‘Round-the-Buoy races and the ‘Round-the-Island Race. Santry has skippered his Ker 50 Temptation Oakcliff in the last three Edgartown Race Weekends, and with its team of 15 sailors – close to half of whom were “Saplings” and “Acorns” from the Oakcliff Sailing program in Oyster Bay, N.Y. – won his class and finished second overall at Block Island Race Week earlier this summer.
Santry competed in the ‘Round-the-Island Race back in the 80s with his father, whose boats also bore the name Temptation. “This race committee runs a really good regatta, and the yacht club is extremely welcoming, so it’s a ton of fun.”
There's still time to register!
’Round-the-Buoy Races deadline: Wednesday, July 19 (click here to register)
’Round-the-Island Race deadline: Friday, July 21 (click here to register)
A registration fee is required for the ‘Round-the-Island Race; the ‘Round-the-Buoy Races are free. For more information, visit http://www.RTIrace.org.
Follow along! EYC will be sharing updates on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
See you in Edgartown, sailors!
By: Becky Pineo
Published on 7/17/17 12:32 PM