October 28th, 2011

Marina del Rey’s Annual Homeport Regatta Set For November 5

If you’ve ever secretly dreamed of channeling your inner Ted Turner by racing a sailboat, this one’s for you: Marina del Rey’s annual Homeport Regatta is happening on Nov. 5.

Sponsored by the Association of Santa Monica Bay Yacht Clubs, the Homeport Regatta is intended for new or novice racers. Two seminars will be held at South Coast Corinthian Yacht Club  on Oct. 27 and Nov. 3, from 7 to 8:30 PM Attendance is recommended for skipper and crew of boats with no racing experience. More details can be found here.

“There are low hurdles to get into this race,”  Bruce Fleck, the regatta chair recently told blogger Paul M. J. Suchecki. “You don’t need to be a member of a yacht club or have your boat handicapped ahead of time. Best of all, the race is free.”

In fact, Suchecki says the rules encourage beginning helmsmen. “Anybody who has driven a boat in a Pacific Handicap Racing Fleet race this past year, or in two cruiser races, is not allowed to take the helm here. It doesn’t mean a helmsman can’t race, just that he can’t steer.”

Three races will be held on Saturday in both cruising and racing classes. Sailors must participate in all three to qualify for the many trophies to be awarded at the post-race Cook-Out at South Coast Corinthian.

Even if you’re a novice sailor, this regatta is a great way to break into the yachting world. Racers  typically “find a supportive, convivial atmosphere in which they can stretch their wings, known here as sails,” concludes Suchecki. And what about experts like Fleck?

“I’ll even go so far as to help crew find boats, if somebody emails me,” Fleck says. You can reach him at: