Prepping the Celestial Boat for the Marion to Bermuda Race — Including the New AIS Rules
By Ron Wisner
Every boat owner has a winter “boat list” of projects and maintenance as the boat is being readied for the next season. However, if the owner is doing the Bermuda race, the usual winter’s “boat list” has doubled.
The celestial boat has some additional preparations that the other boats do not. Some of this additional preparation stems from the fact that we cannot use our electronic instruments. Other preparations come from the nature and practice of the actual navigation.
Safety at Sea Seminar Registration is Open
Registration is now open for a Safety at Sea Program that helps to prepare skippers and crew for the race. The Marion-Bermuda Race in association with the Marblehead-Halifax Ocean Race biennially offers a Safety at Sea Program that helps to prepare skippers and crew for the race. This program is March 9 - 10, 2019 at University of Massachusetts, Boston Campus. In addition to the sessions needed for certification there has been added optional sessions on Medical and Weather and Gulf Stream.
This SAS program fulfill the safety requirements for the Marion Bermuda race and are: At least 30% but not fewer than two members of the crew, including the Person-In-Charge and Navigator or a Watch Captain shall have attended a one-day or two-day US Sailing Offshore Safety at Sea Seminar. At least two members of the crew must hold a World Sailing Offshore Personal Survival Course Certificate. Any certificate obtained more than five (5) years prior to the start of the race or as a result of exclusively internet-based training will not be acceptable for the purposes of this paragraph. For Double Handed yachts, both members shall hold a World Sailing Offshore Personal Survival Course Certificate.
Conditions Adjustment to Marion Bermuda Race Scoring
The ORR handicapping system assumes that the wind will blow at a certain strength from varying angles for the duration of the race. Individual yacht’s polars then define how fast she should sail the course and the fleet is ranked against a fictional ‘scratch boat’. This assumption is ‘challenged’ by a variety of race specific climatic and oceanographic conditions. Ocean races of long duration will typically experience these varied conditions. Whether it is wind deflection and strength between inshore and offshore positions, the crossing of a known directional current or the historical location of a high pressure gradient, the likelihood of predictable conditions for an entire race is little to none. Because of these differences, the Marion Bermuda Race is attempting to take one of these conditions that has shown itself to be a real and consistent detriment to what one might feel is a fair race based solely on a boats handicap and include another factor that adjusts across the fleet. In the case of the Marion Bermuda Race (or any race to Bermuda) it is the Bermuda high pressure gradient.
Registration is Open
Registration for the 2019 Marion Bermuda Race is now open. Skippers please register as a user on this website, log in and then go to Skipper Instructions.
Registration information can be added and edited at later sessions up to the limits set by the Notice of Race.
When a registration is initiated the yacht is listed as Preliminary. After the registration fee is paid she is listed as Entered and after the registration information is completed and is reviewed by the acceptance committee she is Accepted. In the event the entry is not accepted, the entry fee will be returned promptly.