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Monday, January 30, 2023



Nov. 6, 2001 – The Coral Bay Yacht Club will hold its 20th annual Thanksgiving Regatta Nov. 23 and 24. Based at Skinny Legs Bar and Restaurant and run in the waters outside Coral Bay Harbor, the event draws a wide cross section of sailors.
"We are getting more and more people interested in racing PHRF, but we want to encourage everybody to come out," said Gary Wright, a member of the race committee.
You'll find no blue blazers at this event. The post-race parties are laid-back events held at Skinny Legs. Not your typical yacht club scene.
"This is a real fun regatta," said Denise Wright, who works on the regatta.
In addition to the more serious PHRF racers, who also frequent bigger regattas like the Rolex Regatta and BVI Spring Regatta, it also sees liveaboards who pull up the anchor only once or twice a year, cruisers who like to test their mettle against fellow sailors and sometimes, just about anything that floats.
"You don't have to have a syndicate with a container and a mother ship," Denise Wright said, describing the way of life for many boats that race in large regattas.
The regatta's first day always sees single-handed and gaff-rigged boats race the course. The action picks up on day two when friends, family and just about any one who wants to sail boards a wide variety of boats.
The regatta first set sail when a bunch of guys who were building Cowhorn boats on the beach in Coral Bay decided to have a regatta. The regatta grew, until now the regatta attracts more than three dozen boats.
While the old salts give the course a run for their money, one of the next generation took home the top prize last year. Ian Beam, now 17, sailed to victory on his J-24 Ruff~Ian.
He also plans to repeat his tactics.
"We'll probably stick to the left side of the course," Beam said.
He said he plans to sail with the same crew as last year – Revel Boulon, Dane Tarr and Angelo Raimondi.
Gary Wright, who sails a Cal 27 named onlinevacations.com, said Beam would be his closest competition.
The Nov. 23 race will have several classes. They are gaffers, singled handed 35 feet and under, single handed 35 feet and over, and multihulls.
The Nov. 24 races has traditional, three separate cruising classes, two PER classes and a multihulls class.
On Nov. 23, the skippers meeting begins at 9:30 a.m., with the first start at 11:15 a.m. On Nov. 24, the skipper's meeting is 9 a.m. The race starts at 11 a.m. Both are at Skinny Legs.
Denise Wright pointed out that it is essential for boat captains to attend the skipper's meeting. She said the course is announced and last-minute changes discussed.
"People who don't come to the skipper's meeting sometimes lose unnecessarily," she said.
The awards ceremony begins at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 24 at Skinny Legs.
The entrance fee runs $30.
For more information, call Commodore Dave Dostall at 776-6030.

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