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2023 Rolex Big Boat Series at St. Francis Yacht Club - Day 1

by Rolex Big Boat Series 14 Sep 21:55 PDT September 13-17, 2023
2023 Rolex Big Boat Series © Sharon Green /

The 2023 Rolex Big Boat Series kicked off today, and Day 1 was equally spectacular from start to finish. As the regatta set sail at St. Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco, CA, sailors grappled with constantly shifting weather conditions, setting the stage for a challenging yet thrilling start to this prestigious sailing regatta.

With a total of 8 fleets competing, the first day of racing was nothing short of action-packed.

RBBS has earned its exceptional reputation for several reasons: its rich history, the intense preparation, the cacophony of activity on the docks and the decks. With 79 entrants, the 2023 edition features eight fleets on three different racecourses, with two races per day. As one competitor put it, "this regatta is well-executed madness".

During Day 1 of the Rolex Big Boat Series, St. Francis Yacht Club was buzzing as spectators began to gather to watch the action unfold and cheer on their favorite boats on the racecourse.

The J/105s are the largest fleet in this year's edition. With 31 boats on the line, the racing was tight during Day 1. As the fleet powered up under spinnaker towards the finish line, spectators witnessed variable finishes, with Alchemy notching a 1-14 and Peaches a 17-1. Blackhawk won the day, finishing with two 2nd places.

In the elegant Classics' category, the six entrant boats all several decades old were a sight to behold as they raced on the water between St. Francis Yacht Club, Golden Gate Bridge and the city of San Francisco.

Among them, Mayan and Gesture stood out, with Gesture taking line honors but Mayan claiming the top spot on corrected time. Yucca who claimed top honors in the 2022 edition of Rolex Big Boat Series, secured the third place during today's sailing action.

In the J/88 class, Pelagia finished the day in the lead with a 1st and 2nd place. This class has been growing both in size and competitiveness in recent years. Butcher and Split Water hold the 2nd and 3rd place respectively - at least for tonight.

Standings after Day 1:

Classics: (6 entrants)

  • 1st: Mayan (1)
  • 2nd: Gesture (2)
  • 3rd: Yucca (3)
J/105s: (31 entrants)
  • 1st: Blackhawk (2-2)
  • 2nd: Jabberwocky (4-3)
  • 3rd: Mojo (3-4)
J/88s: (8 entrants)
  • 1st: Pelagia (1-2)
  • 2nd: Butcher (4-1)
  • 3rd: Split Water (6-3)
Express 37: (8 entrants)
  • 1st: Limitless (1-1)
  • 2nd: Loco Motion (2-4)
  • 3rd: Spindrift V (4-3)
ORC A: (7 entrants)
  • 1st: Pelagia (1-2)
  • 2nd: Butcher (4-1)
  • 3rd: Split Water (6-3)
ORC B: (7 entrants)
  • 1st: Pelagia (1-2)
  • 2nd: Butcher (4-1)
  • 3rd: Split Water (6-3)
ORC C: (6 entrants)
  • 1st: Pelagia (1-2)
  • 2nd: Butcher (4-1)
  • 3rd: Split Water (6-3)
ORC D: (6 entrants)
  • 1st: Pelagia (1-2)
  • 2nd: Butcher (4-1)
  • 3rd: Split Water (6-3)

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