Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Banderas Bay Regatta XXVII Preview

J/145 sailing Banderas Bay Regatta (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)- In 1524, the Spanish conquistador Francisco Cortés de Buenaventura arrived on the coast of this beautiful bay known today as "Bahias de Banderas". Legends say that 20,000 warriors came down from the mountains above and assembled in the lush valley, into his path. Their bows, decorated with banners in a rainbow of colors, were so impressive that the Bay became known as the “Bay of Flags,” or Bahía de Banderas.

Today the bay is sanctuary to sea life including giant manta rays, sea bass, red snapper, sailfish, marlin, dorado, dolphins and more. Humpback whales come each winter to birth their young, and Olive Ridley sea turtles return each year to the nesting grounds along its shores. In addition, the bay is ringed by mountains and a river valley that is adjacent to the town of Puerto Vallarta; that geography creates a fantastic sea breeze on sunny days, where the wind flows in from the west at 10-17 kts.

J/80 sailing Banderas Bay RegattaAfter sailors discovered this sunny paradise, it did not take long to attract cruising sailors from around the world.  In addition, because of the amazing sea breezes, it has also attracted racing sailors. This year marks the 27th time the Banderas Bay Regatta will be sailed on the spectacular waters off Puerto Vallarta. The emphasis has always been on having a fun and friendly series of races that take place in a serious, professional format.

Hosting the regatta from March 5th to 9th is Vallarta YC that is situated in the northeastern part of the bay called Nuevo Vallarta.  They will provide five full days of racing with up to two races per day.  Some races are windward leeward and others are fun, random leg affairs that take your for a tour around the picturesque bay.

Joining in the fun is a number of J sailors from Mexico and the USA.

J/130 Sirocco sailing Banderas Bay RegattaParticipating for at least the third years in a row in the Big Boat PHRF division are Mike Seth’s J/145 DOUBLE TAKE from Vallarta YC in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico and Lee Pryor’s J/130 SCIROCCO from Oceanside YC in Oceanside, CA.  One of their eager competitors in class will be a 54 footer called “Mermaid Magnet”!  LOL!

In the smaller boat PHRF division, there are at least two J/80s participating.  A veteran of the BBR happens to be Wayne Zittel from San Francisco YC in San Francisco, CA; he runs the J/World Sailing programs based in San Diego, CA and also Berkeley, CA on San Francisco Bay. Wayne is racing, appropriately enough, J-WORLD 3.  On the beautifully maintained J/80 SHIVA, Rush Faville from Vallarta YC and Bucerias, Mexico will be hoping to give Wayne and crew a run-for-the-money at the top of the leaderboard.

The final day for all sailors, March 9th, will be a full day; no rest for the weary at the end of the regatta! It will start with the final day of racing and end with the fabulous Awards Beach Party. In addition to the presentation of awards to the winners, live music by “Luna Rumba” will accompany dinner and after-dinner dancing. The Italian buffet under the stars has been brought back by popular demand. The evening will end with a bang, as fireworks will mark the end of the amazing week! The Beach Party is open to competitors, crew, and anyone else who likes a great tropical beach party.  For more Banderas Bay XXVII sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.