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Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship comes to Long Beach

'The Farr 40 Piranha will be chasing the Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship title in Long Beach, Calif. over Memorial Day Weekend.'    Bronny Joy Daniels

Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship will take place this year at the Long Beach Yacht Club. Long Beach is well known for serving up the heaviest winds in Southern California and will this year welcome the 2011 Championship on May 28-30. The Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship will be the third event of the summer season for California Farr 40 sailors.

Long Beach Yacht Club, in conjunction with the Farr 40 Class Association, will host the event, which is in its 13th edition. The three-day regatta will be staged from Gladstone’s Restaurant on the waterfront in the heart of downtown Long Beach, with the fleet berthed at the adjacent Rainbow Harbor, where the city’s skyline and the Queen Mary dominate the views.

'I am absolutely looking forward to this championship,' said David Voss (Marina Del Ray, Calif.), class president of the West Coast fleet and owner of Piranha. 'Anyone who has done a Rolex event knows how incredible they are, and we are all anticipating a great regatta.' Voss, who has been sailing Farr 40s since 2004, has already taken Piranha out for a spin this year in the Newport to Ensenada Race, where his team took home first place in its class and overall, and in two Farr 40 Class circuit events: the Yachting Cup in San Diego and the Ahmanson Cup in Newport Beach.

'I’ve always been drawn to Farr 40 one-design racing; it has been the benchmark standard for other classes,' said Voss. 'The boat performs equally well in light air and heavy, and overall it is just a fun boat to sail.'

The Rolex Farr 40 North Americans have been raced every year since 1998, with the exception of 2000. In 2010, the regatta was held in Annapolis, Md., and this year will be the regatta’s debut in California, which means it has attracted a large number of teams racing in the Farr 40 West Coast Championship Circuit.

Sailing with the West Coast fleet are new owners Jeff Shew and Bill Durant (Long Beach, Calif.), co-owners of Viva La Vida, which was previously raced (as Goombay Smash) by previous owner William Douglass in the Rolex Farr 40 Worlds 2011 in Sydney, Australia. For Durant and Shew this will be their first-ever Farr 40 championship.

The Farr 40 Viva La Vida (previously Goombay Smash, pictured here in the Rolex Farr 40 Worlds 2011, Sydney, Australia) -  © Rolex- Kurt?nid=83706 Arrigo  

'We were interested in the class, because the participation in Southern California is growing rapidly and the level of competition is high, so it makes sense to get into this type of racing,' said Shew. 'We expect great things from this regatta but are realists and know that there are a lot of great sailors in the class.'

According to Farr 40 Class Secretary Tink Chambers, many of the competitors will be sailing in a multitude of West Coast events following the Rolex North American Championship. 'We have a strong and growing fleet of local Southern California boats, a lively Corinthian level of participation, and a great venue,' said Chambers.

'We are looking forward to another exciting Rolex event this year and are happy to announce that the regatta will be accessible to view live world-wide through Kattack Live Race Tracker and Player, which will put a GPS tracking unit on every boat competing.' The device will allow the racing to be viewed live on the internet through the event?nid=83706 website!new.

The Farr 40 Class maintains an extensive international schedule that revolves around regional fleets in the U.S., Australia, Southern Europe and the Nordic region, with the annual Rolex Farr 40 World Championship serving as the class’s 'crown jewel' of competition.

In addition to Rolex as title sponsor, the 2011 Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship includes as supporting sponsors Gladstone’s Restaurant, bioplastics manufacturer Cereplast, Inc., Hyatt Regency Long Beach and The City of Long Beach Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine.

For more information about the Farr 40 class, the 2011 Farr 40 North Americans or the 2012 Farr 40 World Championship, please visit For more information on the West Coast Farr 40 fleet, please visit

Event website

by Kirsten Ferguson


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12:28 AM Fri 20 May 2011 GMT

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