The 65th Newport to Ensenada International Yacht Race is set to being in just two months, on April 27, and prospective competitors know that they need a plan, especially with a new finish line in place.
Newport to Ensenada 2011
Inshore or offshore at the start? Inside or outside the Coronado Islands at the Mexican border? Turn into Todos Santos Bay at first opportunity or wait for a different wind angle?
Many of the ins and outs of the race will be answered in a series of free seminars scheduled throughout Southern California. The first will be March 8 at the Del Rey Yacht Club in Marina del Rey.
A North Sails professional will answer questions, and special gifts and prizes will be distributed from the NOSA sponsors. The schedule:
March 8, Del Rey YC, Marina del Rey, 7-9 p.m.
Mach 13, West Marine, Long Beach, 7-9 p.m.
March 15, Pierpont Bay YC, Oxnard-Ventura, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
March 20, West Marine, Newport Beach, 6-8 p.m.
March 27, West Marine, San Diego, 6-8 p.m.
March 28, Dana Point YC, 7:30-9:30 p.m.
The 125-nautical mile race starts Friday, April 27, off Balboa Pier with cruising classes going from 11 a.m. and racing classes from noon. Also, for the first time both the starts and finishes will be viewable from shore.
After 64 years the organizing Newport Ocean Sailing Association will move the finish line from outside Ensenada Harbor, which is generally out of sight from land, to the northern side of Todos Santos Bay offshore from the new race headquarters at the Hotel Coral and Marina on the north side of resort city. From there the boats will be visible on their approaches to and through the line before proceeding into the nearby Hotel Coral Marina or to alternative slips or moorings downtown.
Newport to Ensenada
The Hotel Coral also will serve as official headquarters for post-race activities. Free shuttle service between the hotel and downtown Ensenada will be available.
NOSA also has secured special rates for various hotels in the Ensenada area. To make room or marina reservations visit hotel information, click on the Ensenada Hotels and Travel button, then click on Additional Hotels in Ensenada, as the Hotel Coral is completely booked for Saturday, April 28.
Participants may enter online. With 163 boats already entered as of this report, the N2E is in resurgence toward its traditional levels of participation.
They'll be assigned to a variety of classes---Maxi, PHRF A through G, Sprit and Cruz for monohulls and ORCA for multihulls. But all Racing class boats, big and small, will be gunning for the prime prize: the President of USA Trophy for the fastest corrected handicap time.
For those concerned about race conflicts, the 2012 spring schedule allows participation in one big event each month: the Islands Race in February, the Border Run in March, Newport to Ensenada in April, the Around Catalina Race in May and the Around The Islands race in June.