Among the one-design and IRC handicap entries, new ORC Club, Multihull and Performance Cruisers are starting to populate the scratch sheet; 75 teams from 8 countries already signed up to race in January 2016
A strong initial turnout for entries has prompted event organizers at the Storm Trysail Club to decide to extend the early discount deadline to October 1st, 2015. After October 1st, the entry fee increases by $4/foot of the overall length of the entered boat.
"We had excellent response to our first appeal to entries, with more boat signed up now than it this time in years past," said event Chairman John Fisher. "But with the summer holidays just ending, schools back in session, and various other factors, we want to give our customers some more time to take advantage of these discounted fees so that more can plan to participate at the event."
Already the majority of entries have signed up for one-design competition in several classes: Melges 24, J/70, J/80, Farr 280, Viper 640, J/88, C&C 30, J/111, and J/122 classes. And there are other one-design classes also considering their entry plan to the event.
Among the handicap classes, IRC 1 and 2 have thusfar attracted 10 committed entries, with more expected, but the real growth is expected in three new class offerings at this year’s event: ORC Club, Multihulls and Performance Cruisers.
The ORC Club class is intended for those entries that would normally race in PHRF, but want a more objective, accurate and universal rating system that will not have the variations that are typical among local PHRF handicapping. The ORC Club system is used for national and regional racing around the world, with over 6000 certificates issued annually, and is growing in interest in North America. Rather than relying on a consortium of handicappers to determine ratings, the system uses the ORC’s advanced velocity prediction program to model boat performance and determine a 3-number rating system to allow boats of different designs to race more fairly against each other across a wide range of wind speeds.
A Fact Sheet on ORC and a list of ORC ratings for common boat types can be found at www.yachtscoring.com. Applications for ORC Club ratings can be done simply by submitting data on an online rating application found at www.orc.org/clubapplication. Certificates will be processed and issued by US Sailing for only $50, and can be used wherever ORC Club racing is offered, such as at the Storm Trysail Club’s Annapolis Fall Regatta in October.
Multihulls are not new in the history of Quantum Key West Race Week, but are making a comeback this year as a racing class at the event. Currently the entries are all Corsair trimarans, but other multihull types are being organized to come and join the fun.
Lastly, the Performance Cruising class is a new concept for Key West, and one where Storm Trysail feels there is tremendous interest and growth potential given its popularity at Block Island Race Week this year, as well as at other popular events. The first entries to this class are starting to come in now.
“Our courses for this class will be simple navigational courses around the Key West area, suitable for casual racing with family and friends,” says race committee chairman Dick Neville. “For this class we would run one race a day of a few hours duration to let them enjoy the great sailing conditions around the island and get them back in time to also enjoy some time ashore in this great place.”
Organizers are also exploring the option of having exhibition race classes at the event to give spectators on shore a taste of the excitement of competitive sailing.
And classes that may be interested in a reduced format of three days of racing over Wednesday-Friday, January 20-22nd, should as soon as possible contact event manager Bill Canfield at email@example.com.
Media inquiries can be made to Quantum Key West Race Week 2016 Media Manager Dobbs Davis at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For general regatta questions and sponsorship inquiries, contact Amy Gross-Kehoe at email@example.com.
The event's website is http://keywestraceweek.com/