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The sea swell at Point Bonita in this year's foggy, mellow Drakes Bay Race. ©2014

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Synthia Petroka


Double Drakes
An old fashioned race to an old fashioned destination celebrated the age-old pleasure of a coastal jaunt up to Drakes Bay and back over the weekend. This yearRead on…

Farewell to Caleb Whitbeck
A renowned maritime artist and sailor based in Novato, Caleb Whitbeck passed away over the weekend. According to… Read on…

Howard Spruit Talks About Rocket 88
On New Year's Eve 2013, we visited designer Howard Spruit at his home/workshop in Santa Cruz. Here we bring you a podcast of our interview with Howard… Read on…

Mid-Afternoon Half Moon Marathon
"Going into Point Pinole was brutal. It was nasty. We didn't crash, but…" Read on…

Santana 22 Nationals
Sixteen Tunas came out for their National Championship Regatta in about even numbers from Santa Cruz Yacht Club and hosting Monterey Peninsula Yacht Club. Deb Fehr raced with her all-female crew in multi-color tutus… Read on…

Absinthe in the Cup, Part 2
We have plenty of water. Our biggest worry at this point is TP – we may run out… Read on…

Hot and Heavy Friday Night
The hot and thirsty crews in Corinthian Yacht Club's Friday night beer can race on July 25 might indeed have quaffed a lot ofRead on…

Plastic Classic Fantastic
Plastic was fantastic on Saturday at the Bay View Boat Club in San Francisco. The 30th running of the Plastic Classic Yacht Race had it all: sunny weather, funky and fluky winds building to 20 knots, and the always great… Read on…

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Coming Up

St. Francis YC's Aldo Alessio Regatta is this Friday-Sunday. PHRF, ORR, HPR, J/111, J/120, J/105, and Farr 40 classes are invited; other one design classes with an LOA of 35 feet or greater and a minimum of six boats can arrange to race as well. Enter by Wednesday to avoid a late fee. Friday features a handicap-only race out to the ocean.

On Saturday and Sunday, the Islander 36 fleet will hold their Nationals at Sausalito YC. Encinal YC's doublehanded women skippers race, Gracie & George, will be on Sunday, with a start south of the Bay Bridge and a South Bay courses with a downwind finish at EYC.

This September 11-14 marks the golden anniversary of St. Francis Yacht Club's Big Boat Series, which has been known as the Rolex Big Boat Series since the title sponsor signed on in 2005. Founded in 1964, the inaugural regatta attracted nine yachts, with Jim Wilhite’s Sparkman & Stephens 63-ft yawl Athene claiming the St. Francis Perpetual Trophy after a narrow victory over Jim Kilroy’s Kialoa II. "To mark the 50th anniversary, a couple of smaller sportboat fleets popular here on the West Coast – Express 27s and Melges 24s – have been invited," said event chair Pat Nolan. "We also expect half a dozen catamarans, and the J/120s will be back, while the J/111s should have about 10 boats on the starting line." The J/70s, which first raced in the series last year, will return, and the Farr 40 class expected to make a comeback. Registration is open at Register before August 20 to avoid a late fee.

Linda Weinstock of Island YC in Alameda writes about the Northern California Women's Sailing Seminar on September 20-21: "Please join us for an exciting, one of a kind weekend event. It is all about women teaching women how to sail. It is fun, relaxing, educational and inspiring. Top women sailors volunteer as instructors during classroom and on-the-water workshops. Sponsors donate valuable items for lunchtime and cocktail hour raffles. Courses range from Beginner through Offshore Cruising with subjects such as Advanced Sail Trim, Racing, Spinnaker, Navigation and Boat Ownership in between. Many women return year after year to hone their skills. Registration is online at The discounted 'Early Bird' registration fee is $225 for the weekend until August 31, when it increases to $250. The price includes continental breakfasts, lunches, no-host cocktail party, one raffle ticket, class handouts, visor, and a bag filled with goodies from our sponsors."

Another women's event follows on October 5 at South Beach Yacht Club, the Red Bra Regatta for women sailors. The NOR and registration are already online at

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