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go south young man. and then north.

The Pineapple Cup is Back!

pineapple-cup-2It’s tropical sailing at its best, sun, warm water, solid wind and tropical locations. The 33rd Edition of Pineapple Cup returns this February 3rd and if it’s not on your sailing calendar, get to it. This is a race you aren’t going to want to miss.

There have been some changes to make it more enticing…first the start of the race has been moved up to fit in better with the RORC 600. It’s also returning to its historic roots and will depart from Miami. We have the fine folks at the Biscayne Bay Yacht Club ready to welcome all of the teams for a great Kick Off Party on February 2nd.
Also Brand new for 2017 in the first edition of the Cuba Cup, a 642nm race from Montego Bay to Havana. Why deliver home when you can race to Havana?
From personal experience, what’s great about Pineapple Cup is the tactical challenge of the 811nm course. The first 60 miles is often the hardest sailing, crossing the gulf stream at tight wind angles to make Great Issac Island where you start the gradual 750nm turn south. Pretty soon and without even realizing it, you have been through the reaching inventory, are into the kites and are on a classic downwind slide in warm tropical waters.  At some stage having made the foreboding eastern tip of Cuba, you’ll have to pick a side for the last 200nm run to Montego Bay, but don’t underestimate it, this decision has been pivotal in the outcome of many previous races, you will have to choose wisely.
Now having arrived in Montego Bay, the welcome at the Montego Bay Yacht Club is one of the best I have experienced in international sailboat racing. From the crate of refreshments delivered to the boat before the dock lines are even on, to the genuine hospitality offered by the MBYC member assigned to assist each yacht, to the fantastic shore side parties, all these factors combine into one of the classic offshore yacht races both in history and experience!
And for those of us the USA, it starts on our doorstep and ends an easy hop from many major US airports, no massive deliveries or logistics to deal with.  When the north is dealing with the February snow, I know where I want be. Right here!
For the OA, Hugh Piggin Race Director