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SDYC and NHYC set the stage for the 2024 Islands Race

by San Diego Yacht Club 11 Jan 19:29 GMT February 9-10, 2024
Islands Race at San Diego Yacht Club © San Diego Yacht Club

The highly anticipated Islands Race, hosted by the San Diego Yacht Club (SDYC) and Newport Harbor Yacht Club (NHYC), is set to unfold on February 9-10, 2024.

Sailors are eager to take on the challenge of this competitive offshore race, covering 142 nautical miles around Santa Catalina and San Clemente Islands.

The race, renowned for its overnight endurance test, starts off of Point Fermin in San Pedro, CA and finishes off the coast of Point Loma in San Diego, CA. This annual coastal race typically attracts over 30 boats, setting the stage for a variety of competitive fleets.

David Moore, sailing on the Santa Cruz 52 Westerly, expressed his excitement about the race. "This will be our first Islands Race, as last year's was blown out. I was first introduced to the idea of the race when I met Paul Stemler while admiring his J-44 at NHYC. It was a great race concept and has resulted in a signature event for NHYC, SDYC, and our sled community." Westerly is fresh off their overall win at the 2023 Transpac Race last summer and looks to build on that experience in the Islands Race and PV Race this winter.

For Moore, offshore racing is more than a competition; it's an opportunity for personal growth. "Every watch, every minute, is an opportunity to create an improved version of yourself. Fast is Fun! Wind and waves requested!"

Keith Ericson, an experienced skipper of the Tripp 40 B'Quest, shared insights into the conditions that make the Islands Race a unique test of skill and strategy. "The weather can be so variable. Some races, the winds are strong throughout and keeping control is what keeps one safe. Others are a mix of moderate to strong winds for a while and then very light winds overnight, so the race is really won at night by working hard to keep the boat going when others can't quite."

The Islands Race serves as a crucial tune up race for the upcoming offshore season, particularly as a lead in to SDYC's Puerto Vallarta Race two weeks later. Many of the teams racing to Mexico will use the Islands Race to measure themselves against their competition and prep their boats for the 1,000 miles race to PV. The Islands Race format remains consistent with past years, and places a strong emphasis on safety protocols to ensure the well-being of all participants.

Post-race, teams will gather on Saturday afternoon on the San Diego Yacht Club front deck for an Awards Ceremony.

Spectators can follow the race through the YB Trackers, providing real-time updates on the positions and progress of the competing boats.

For more information, race updates, and to track the participants, visit www.islandsrace.com.

View the entry list here.

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