by Rich Roberts
Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race - Win a GPS or VHS … and learn how to win the N2E
Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race
When is a smaller sail better than a big sail in moderate breeze?
When is an indirect course better than the rhumb line?
What is the rhumb line?
Veteran sailors tuning up for the Newport Ocean Sailing Association's 64th Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race and those wondering if they're ready for offshore racing--at night (yikes!)---can refresh or find the answers and the know-how at four 'Sail to Win' pre-race seminars throughout Southern California in March.
Attendance is free even to those not planning to do the race … but maybe they'll change their minds. Each person attending will have a chance to win a GPS or a VHS radio.
GPS? VHS? You'll find out.
The seminars are sponsored by North Sails and West Marine. Bill Herrschaft, manager of the North Sails loft in Marina Del Rey, will team with NOSA personnel to lead off the series of seminars with a presentation at Del Rey Yacht Club Thursday night, March 10, at 7 p.m. A question and answer session will follow.
Other seminars scheduled:
Tuesday, March 15, West Marine, Long Beach;
Tuesday, March 22, West Marine, Newport Beach;
Tuesday, March 29, West Marine, San Diego.
The 125.5-nautical mile race starts off the Balboa Pier on Friday, April 15---two weeks earlier than usual.
Herrschaft has done '15 or more' of the races, as he can best recall. He'll lean on his experience to discuss navigation, sail selection, weather interpretation and other factors specific to the race and will answer all questions. For example:
What is the ideal crew (if Russell Coutts or Paul Cayard are not available?)
Herrschaft: 'It's important to have a good team that can do every position on the boat. It's good to rotate people around. On a typical watch I'll do trimming, grinding and steering. If it's windy you might want to keep your best helmsman on.'
Or if it's not very windy?
Herrschaft: 'If the wind is light it's usually faster to reach along with a light genoa. There are times you just sit there with a spinnaker and go low and slow when you'd be better off with a genoa sheeted to the rail.'
Upon reaching Todos Santos Bay, why not make a hard left for the finish line right away?
Herrschaft: 'There are hills on the northern side of the bay where you don't want to get stuck too close to shore … best to take a long starboard jibe out and then a nice tight port jibe in.'
What is special about this race?
Herrschaft: 'The mountains and other scenery on your left … whales and dolphins swimming along with you.'
Expert answers to those questions and more will be available for the asking at the March seminars. Reservations are not required.
Logistical support for the race is provided by the Bahia Corinthian, Balboa and Newport Harbor Yacht Clubs.
Newport Beach, an opulent seaside community located on the Orange County coastline between Los Angeles and San Diego, epitomizes the quintessential Southern California lifestyle. Known for its picturesque views of the Pacific and one of the world’s largest small yacht harbors, the city is acclaimed for its beaches, yachting community, sophisticated atmosphere, international film festival, three annual epicurean festivals and the oldest holiday boat parade in the nation. Newport Beach was named 'one of the top 10 resort towns in the U.S.' by AOL Travel in 2008. For more information, call (800) 94-COAST or visit online
Online entry and other information here