Hit the Road

Get your boat and team ready to travel.

Many owners consider traveling to events a daunting undertaking, but that shouldn't be the case. The first time I did Key West I worried about everything, but now it's a real snap-fit program. Here's what I've learned after four years of hauling my program cross country to Key West. 1. Get your crew pumped up and make Key West (or any other event for that matter) your goal, your destination. You want to get to wherever it is as a team. It's a reward to work toward, and it keeps motivation high during the season knowing you're going to the most competitive event in the country. 2. Plan early. For Key West, the first week of July is the time to start getting things in line-your trucking company, the boatyard you'll use, your slip, and your meals and accommodations. 3. Find a reliable rigger. My rigger travels with the boat. It's trucked to Florida in December and the rigger goes down early to put it together. You can share the cost of the rigger with other teams, especially teams with similar boats because the rigger knows what needs to be done. 4. Get reliable local contacts who know the area, the services, and the people. The first time you go, take the time to meet these folks. 5. Get a slip early. 6. Spread the cost by having crewmembers pay for their airfare, and have them contribute to the housing and meal budgets. -Rick Wesslund