let's get ready to rumble

Screen Shot 2017-04-01 at 10.59.50 AMBreak out the propellors, because thanks to a new philosophy and partnership, the Southern Ocean Racing Conference is going full-power for 2018!  The SORC Islands in the Stream Series (including the Miami to Havana Race) features three new classes for 2018 to better respond to the market for adventurous souls looking for winter fun and cultural exchange, and an incredible $500,000 prize purse to help provide a further boost to participation.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that heavy-hitting Yanmar is the new sponsor of the series, their Comms Director telling us that the diesel manufacturer was looking for ways to show their customers how invested they are in Cuba’s future.  “The economic and cultural impact of this kind of competition is massive yet relatively easy on the infrastructure,” he said.  “we believe the new prize and new classes will add up to 400 entries next year to the Havana Race and 150 for the Series, delivering an impact of over 20 million dollars to Cuba and South Florida just for the 2017-18 season.  One reason?  Yanmar’s in perfect position to be one of the early suppliers for Cuba’s estimated massive need for tractors and associated machinery for thousands of small family farms, especially now that the Alabama supplier touted by the Obama admin was rejected by Cuba.
One SORC member says the move doesn’t go far enough, and has initiated moves to introduce an even more radical yet potentially huge new class to the Havana Race: Poker Run racers.  “Responses to our post-race competitor surveys and membership surveys show a significant demand for all kinds of powered racing to Cuba, from the sail-with-blender set to the 100 MPH offshore powerboats,” said the member, who spoke to Sailing Anarchy on the condition of anonymity.  “SORC’s new sponsor has the resources to create the kind of event that’s never existed before in this hemisphere – a thousand-boat power and sail regatta with parties that will redefine “VIP Hospitality” forever.