Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta St. Petersburg: Growth Spurt

NOOD Regatta
The S2 7.9s remain a staple of the NOOD regatta and return in 2018 with an impressive 11-boat fleet, all of them arriving on trailers without Florida tags.Paul Todd/Outside Images

The Helly Hansen National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta Series — the largest national sailboat racing circuit in the United States — returns to St. Petersburg, Fla., for the first stop of its 30th anniversary season Feb. 16-18. The event is organized by Sailing World and hosted by St. Petersburg Yacht Club. Two weeks out from the event, entries had surpassed 170 boats, a significant uptick from 2017.

The annual three-day event features one-design racing, where teams compete in races against identical boats. Points are accumulated based on finishing position in each race, and the team with the fewest total points at the conclusion of the regatta wins its class.

For competitors in the regatta’s one handicap class (PHRF), time allowances are used to score a boats of varying sizes and designs.

Every year, hundreds of local, regional and national sailors register to compete in the Helly Hansen NOOD Regatta St. Petersburg, vying for top marks in one of more than 10 classes and a chance at the Overall Winner title, which earns the winning team a berth at the Helly Hansen Caribbean NOOD Championship Regatta, hosted by Sunsail in the British Virgin Islands Oct. 21-26. New this year are the J/88 and J/111 classes, bringing back some big-boat one-design action to Tampa Bay.

Helly Hansen—a global leader in technical sailing apparel with more than 135 years of experience protecting professionals on the water—continues as title sponsor for the elite sailing series for the fourth consecutive year. As part of Helly Hansen’s commitment to the sport, the company will also continue to sponsor a team of local teens as the Helly Hansen Junior Crew at each stop in 2018.

Operating since 1988, Sailing World’s National Offshore One Design Regattas, known as the “NOODs,” are the longest-running and most popular sailboat racing series in North America. Every NOOD regatta attracts regional, national and international talent to compete against the local community on their home waters.

Other 2018 sponsors include North Sails, Mount Gay Rum and Sunsail.