Follow the Fleet to Bermuda with Pantaenius Race Tracking

Tuesday, 17 June 2014


Racing to Bermuda - On your bucket list?

Every two years in mid-June, more than 150 boats start from the historic seaport of Newport, Rhode Island, for a 635-mile ocean passage—the iconic Newport Bermuda Race, which has been co-managed by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and the Cruising Club of America since 1926. On June 20th, spectators, friends and family will gather on the lawns of Castle Hill overlooking Narragansett Bay to cheer the competitors who are about to cross a stretch of the Atlantic Ocean known for challenging weather and strong currents. The fleet is very diverse, with five divisions racing for an array of trophies awarded in Bermuda. This year’s line-up includes an impressive fleet of 23 Swan yachts. 

An adventure not to be missed in a lifetime, and a race that American writer, sailor and author John Rousmaniere (The Annapolis Book of Seamanship, A Berth to Bermuda, Fastnet, Force 10 and many other titles) summed up to perfection for ClubSwan:
“Few tests of seamanship are as iconic, popular, and accessible as the 635-mile Newport Bermuda Race, whose 48th race will start at Newport, R.I., on June 20th. As usual, Swans will be well represented with more than 20 entries in a fleet that numbers close to 180 boats. Having raced to Bermuda nine times, I can predict what the voyage will be like. The first night, off the New England coast, will be damp and chilly as you get your sea legs. Near the Gulf Stream on the second day, the sea will warm and likely be rough enough to make good on the race’s nickname, ‘The Thrash to the Onion Patch’ (Bermuda once was farm land). After a few days of hard sailing in squalls and occasional calms, you will spot Bermuda low on the horizon ahead. Working around the reef to beautiful St. David’s Head, you will finish amid hugs and high-fives. Inhaling the sweet smell of oleander and almost tasting Planter’s Punch, you will wind up the long channel to Hamilton, where the long post-race party eventually comes to a reluctant end with the grand prize-giving ceremony at Government House. Whether or not you win silver, each sailor in your and every other boat will glory in the profound satisfaction of having raced to Bermuda.”

The 49th Newport Bermuda Race is right around the corner. Home-based spectators can track their  favorite yachts, skippers, or crewmembers in the 635-mile ocean classic starting June 20 at Newport, R.I., with the first gun at 12:50. All boats in the 2014 fleet will be provided with Yellowbrick tracking modules before the start. Pantaenius Race Tracking is your link to all the virtual action in the race.

 By Talbot Wilson

See Newport Bermuda Race images

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 17 June 2014 )