Regatta Series Continues in San Diego

With mix of new and old, big and small, the Helly Hansen Sailing World Regatta Series rolls in to San Diego for a spring sailing kickoff.
sailboats tightly packed together after a start of a race
Close racing in the ORC division at the 2022 Helly Hansen Sailing World Regatta Series San Diego. Paul Todd/Outside Images

The second stop of the national Helly Hansen Sailing World Regatta Series kicks off on Friday in San Diego with the return of the small-boat action on South Bay. Two classes new to the regatta—VX One and Melges 15—will bring extra sportboat flair to the racecourse, which will be shared with the growing local J/24 fleet and the International 14s, contesting their Midwinter Championship, as well as J/70s and Ultimate 20s, which pride themselves on being America’s first sportboat class.

The regatta’s Ocean Course classes will get their races underway on Saturday and Sunday, as will the Distance Race fleet, which will be sailing one long course each day, with a leg out into the waters off Point Loma before returning to navigate the challenging course around San Diego Bay.

Offshore will be the legacy classes of the San Diego regatta, including J/105s, Beneteau 36.7s and 40.7s. An ORC fleet that includes the 2022 regatta’s overall winner—Rudolph Hasl’s J/145, Palaemon—will race alongside a newly formed rating band of boats called “Fast 40,” which includes a variety of 40-footers, including a trio of J/120s, a J/122 and J/111, with the sole symmetric outlier being the 1991-vintage Tripp 40 B’Quest, campaigned by Keith Ericson, of San Diego.

Regatta organizers, in an effort to add more diversity and access to the regatta series will welcome the addition of several classes used by international Paralympic sailors: the Hansa 303, Liberty and Martin 16. The initiative is led by Challenged Sailors San Diego, which provides therapeutic and recreational adaptive sailing opportunities for people with disabilities.

On Thursday evening at Coronado YC, Sailing World Magazine’s Dave Reed, will continue his Speaker Series with special guest Andrew Campbell, a San Diego native who has enjoyed an enviable sailing career as a top junior sailor, Olympian and longstanding America’s Cup crew, currently with the New York YC’s American Magic as the critical flight controller of its AC75.