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San Diego Yacht Club welcomes Star sailors to Western Hemisphere Championship

by San Diego Yacht Club 24 Apr 08:20 PDT 22-25 May 2019
Star Western Hemisphere Championship © San Diego Yacht Club

What sight is more beautiful than a cluster of Stars floating low in the sky over the Pacific Ocean... the Star boat that is. Sailors and spectators can enjoy the view of the International Star Class Western Hemisphere Championship from Wednesday, May 22 through Saturday, May 25. Nearly 30 Stars are headed to San Diego in less than a month and will be making their way southeast of Point Loma for a four-day series of ocean races.

Since 1934, Star sailors have been competing to earn their colored stars. Last year, first place in the Western Hemisphere Championship went to Skipper Lars Grael and Crew Samuel Goncalves from Brazil, sailed in Miami, FL. This year, the entry list is flush with several local San Diego sailors looking to fight for the silver Star.

There's a rich history of Star sailing local to Southern California and this regatta will have the pleasure of seeing several big names appear on the scoresheet. Mark Reynolds, two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, is one of the many excited to get out on the water. "I've sailed in this regatta at least 25 times. I'm not sailing that much these days, but with the regatta at the SDYC, I figured it would be a good chance to get in the boat with Hal Haenel [Olympic crew] again," Reynolds began.

Although it may seem like there's a bias, home-town advantage, the regatta isn't always a SoCal shoe-in. "Even though the San Diego Star fleet can be argued to be the best in the world over the history of the class, I think it took almost 50 years for a local to win the Star Worlds when it was held here," explained Reynolds.

Amazing Star sailors from all over the world will be competing in the Star Western Hemisphere Championship. Two races are scheduled for each day that will contribute to the overall score of the event. Shall the number of races exceed five, the worst score will be thrown away. After the races on Saturday, the sailors will participate in an Awards Party.

Some of the other prominent Star sailors participating in next month's event include:

  • Mark Reynolds: Star World Champion (2x) & Olympian (4x)
  • Brian Ledbetter: Olympian
  • Paul Cayard: Star World Champion & Olympian
  • Carl Buchan: Star World Champion & Olympian
  • Eric Doyle: Star World Champion
SDYC Commodore Jerelyn Biehl comments, "With our deep history with the Star Class, SDYC is proud to host this silver Star event and continue our traditions. Many of our past and present Star sailors will be in attendance and we expect a large spectator crowd to watch these iconic boats battle it out on the Pacific Ocean."

Notice of race available here.

Following the Western Hemispheres is the Star World Championships in Italy this June.

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