Rally to the CaribbeanThe 18th Annual North American Rally to the Caribbean (NARC) will depart from Newport, RI on Saturday, October 28, or the best weather window after that date. “The NARC is the only rally that officially stops in Bermuda on the way to the Caribbean,” said NARC founder Hank Schmitt, President of Offshore Passage Opportunities in Halesite, NY. “We stay at the St. Georges Dinghy & Sports Club. Our host in St. Maarten is IGY Marina which gives us two free days dockage and 10% discount on slip fees for as long as you stay, up to and including the entire winter season.”

Any seaworthy vessels heading south are welcome to join the NARC, which is free with a $100 per person fee to pay for socials. “If you are taking your boat south from New England and don’t live aboard full time, you may want to depart with our fleet since we depart 200 miles further east than the Chesapeake Bay departure port,” said Schmitt. “Since the tradewinds after Bermuda are out of the southeast, it’s better to have your easting in early. You will save time not sailing to Norfolk.”

“If a boat owner prefers to sail to the BVI from Bermuda, they are welcome to do so,” Schmitt continued. “The rest of the fleet are pro skippers and crew, or sailors that do not have boats but who want to sail south as crew. We have a fleet of Swans and three boats from Rob Swain Sailing School joining the rally. If you want to sail offshore and do not have a boat, you can contact us or Rob Swain Sailing School and sign aboard as crew.”

“Boats can arrive in Newport as early as October 23 and get a big discount on dockage at the Newport Yachting Center. We have a weather briefing from Weather Routing Inc. before we depart and boats can sign up for tracking using either a Spot Tracker or a Garmin Delorme unit. We have socials in Newport and Bermuda that are included in the rally fee and everyone gets a free rally t-shirt. Besides the free weather briefing, the $35 per person head tax in Bermuda is also waived.”

For more information, call 1-800- 472-7724, email offshorepassage@sprintmail.com, or log onto sailopo.com.

Previous Article