You have to experience this! For the health of body and soul. This is no ordinary sailboat race! For starters, it takes place entirely within the NSC harbour. The boats used are designed for youth weighing 100 pounds or less. But the Race is restricted to those 18 years of age and over! Most NSC races aren’t spectator events, certainly not from the comfort of NSC’s deck, but the Harbourmaster’s is the exception, and you even get a blow-by-blow, or tack-by-tack, commentary on loudspeaker.
NSC’s Harbourmaster’s Race is actually not one race, but a series of heats in which the top two from each heat advance to the semi-finals, and then the top two or three from the semi-finals advance to the finals.
There is no need to register in advance; just come down to the club on the day of the event, and sign up for one of the heats. Races only take ~10 minutes, and the swirling and fluky winds in the harbour are guaranteed to frustrate the competitors while providing entertainment for the spectators.
Until around 2007, this event was held in the club’s Optimists, but since then the club’s O’Pen Bics have been used for the competition. Remember that these boats are designed for 10-year-olds, so wear swimming clothes, and be prepared to bend your body in ways you may not have in recent years. At least the Bics are fairly flat for lying across. Lying across an Optimist is just too hard!
Even if you don’t choose to compete, it’s an entertaining afternoon for spectators.