How to Watch the Start of the 2018 Newport Bermuda Race

newport_bermuda_race.jpgIf you are not one of the 1500+ sailors starting the 51st Newport Bermuda Race on Friday, June 15, 2018, you can watch the start on Narragansett Bay or online. The start will be officiated by the New York Yacht Club Race Committee from onboard the 105-foot classic yacht Whitehawk. The warning gun will be at 1:00 p.m. for the first of seven divisions of boats which range from 32.5-112 feet in length.

Talbot Wilson/PPL photo (2014)

On race day, with the start close to land, there are numerous public shoreside areas from which to watch. The northern end of Fort Adams State Park is ideal for observing the 171 boats depart Newport Harbor; once they start jockeying for position in the East Passage of Narragansett Bay, the west side of Fort Adams and Brenton Point State Park, along with Jamestown’s Fort Wetherill and Beavertail State Parks will provide excellent vantage points.

The starting line itself will be located between a yellow buoy near Castle Hill Light and a staff displaying a flag aboard Whitehawk which will be anchored near mid‐channel. Nearest to the starting line is the famous Castle Hill Inn with its sloping waterfront lawn.  (Note the Inn charges for parking and asks that you not bring food or drink.)  If there are no weather delays, the spectacle will last roughly two hours.

If you choose to go on the water, note that kayaks, paddleboards, canoes and small inflatables are strongly discouraged due to congestion and choppy water.

Virtual Spectating at the Start and During the Race

Online spectators will have front row seats for the action via Facebook Live where Nic Douglass, host of Adventures of a Sailor Girl, will share interviews with crews and the race committee in the hour before the start, as well as commentary on each class as it gets underway between 1:00 and 3:30 p.m.  A wrap-up show will air at 6:00 p.m. EDT. To watch the live feed—or view it later—visit Newport Bermuda Race or Adventures of a Sailor Girl on Facebook.

Online spectators can get additional real time information through the Pantaenius Race Tracker, and on Twitter and Instagram.  A detailed explanation and map of the starting area, as well as the links to all the social media platforms, are conveniently found here http://bermudarace.com/resources/spectator-resources/  Spectators can join competitors in contributing to the event by using #BermudaRace

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