Few tests of blue-water seamanship are as iconic as the 635-mile Newport Bermuda Race. The 2016 race (starting on June 17) is the 50th and also marks the 90th anniversary of the partnership of the organizers, the Cruising Club of America and Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Here is an overview of the race with links to helpful articles on this website.
Sailed almost entirely out of sight of land, the Bermuda Race was created in 1906 by Thomas Fleming Day, a yachting writer who believed in the then-radical idea that amateur sailors in small yachts could sail safely in blue water. The colorful Tom Day was a pioneer in the sport of long-distance racing. In the 1920s the race inspired Britain’s Fastnet Race and Royal Ocean Racing Club, and also the freshwater Bayview-Mackinac Race on Lake Huron.
In a typical race, a chilly first night brings the fleet out into the Atlantic. As the sailors enter the realm of their new lord and master, the Gulf Stream, the race often makes good on its nickname, “The Thrash to the Onion Patch.” Once through the rough Stream, the sailors press on to the finish off St. David’s Lighthouse. Inhaling the sweet smell of oleander, they motor up the winding channel to Hamilton, where the Dark ’n Stormies flow until the prize ceremony on Government House’s spectacular hilltop, where handsome and historic trophies are presented by Bermuda’s Governor . Prize or not, any crew can glory in the satisfaction of having raced to Bermuda. Recent entries and race results are listed on the race website.
Newport Shipyard is a proud sponsor of the Newport Bermuda Race and is host to the Gosling's Rum - Newport Shipyard Crew party which will be held at the Shipyard on Wednesday, June 15, 2016