62nd Block Island Race
From the Storm Trysail Club
: Sailors from the northeast have emerged from hibernation and targeted next week's Block Island Race as a major tune-up for the '07 season. The spring classic, hosted by the Storm Trysail Club and in its 62nd running, is a distance race of 185 nautical miles from Stamford, Conn., down Long Island Sound, to Block Island, R.I., and back. Last year's event hosted over 100 boats, and this year's fleet -- comprised of IRC, PHRF and doublehanded boats -- is shaping up to be impressive when it sets out at 1700 on Friday, May 25. Currently, the smallest boat entered is the Olson 30 Wave Dancer, skippered by Benoit Ansart (Old Greenwich, Conn.), while the largest is the Reichel/Pugh 81 Bon Bon, skippered by Stephan Reith (Hamburg, Germany). The larger boats generally finish on Saturday afternoon, with the majority of the fleet finishing between midnight Saturday and 8 a.m. Sunday. "We are certainly looking for a whole lot more wind than last year," said Race Chairman Ray Redniss. "Not as much as last year's Vineyard Race, howeverâ€¦but something in between would be just fine! There's always the eye on breaking Boomerang's record in 2002 of 16 hours, 20 minutes and 50 seconds, but the event also serves many different purposes for different players." Redniss explained that while Long Island sailors started their season at the end of April, other regional sailors have only just commissioned their boats. Some will use the Block Island Race as a shakedown for the Storm Trysail Club's quickly approaching Block Island Race Week XXII presented by Rolex, a popular biennial event that takes place June 17-22 and will serve as the first-ever Rolex US-IRC National Championship. In addition, the Block Island Race is part of the Gulf Stream Series Trophy for IRC boats while also being a qualifier for the Northern Ocean Racing Trophy (IRC) and the New England Lighthouse Series (PHRF). Specifically for Long Island Sound sailors, the Block Island Race is a qualifier for the Caper, Sagola and Windigo trophies awarded by the Yacht Racing Association of Long Island Sound and the "Tuna Trophy" for the best IRC combined scores in the Block Island Race (weighted 60%) and Larchmont Yacht Clubâ€™s EDLU Race (weighted 40%).