2018-07-05 / Upcoming Events

One-design racing returns for encore

After finishing runner-up Sunday to New Yorker Scott Kaufman, 1984 Olympic sailor Steve Benjamin will race for revenge at Sail Newport’s flagship event this weekend.

The Newport Regatta will feature a dozen one-design classes, from F18 catamarans to the Depression-era Herreshoff S Class. An Etchells fleet also will be at the starting line.

While Benjamin, a part-time Jamestowner, has dominated Etchells racing stateside — he is the three-time defending national champion — Kaufman helmed America Jane 11 to victory during the New York Yacht Club race. Benjamin’s Terrapin finished second.

This weekend during the Newport Regatta, a nearly identical field will race on that same racetrack.

“It was challenging out there, but it’s why we come,” Kaufman said. “It’s a great place to sail.”

Like Benjamin, Nun Avenue’s Tim Healy is another Jamestowner who finished with a silver medal over the weekend. The two-time J/24 world champion helmed USA 2 to a second-place finish in the 21- boat J/70 fleet. Team Vineyard Vines, owned by John Baxter, won two of the four races en route to victory.

While the Newport Regatta has a J/70 division scheduled, Baxter and Healy were not registered as of Monday.

Along with the Etchells, J/70, F18 and S Class fleets, there will be M32, 505, Laser, 2.4 Metre, VX One, RS Aero, C&C 30 and Melges 20 divisions. Local entries include Whale Rock Racing, an F18 owned by Chris Bulger, and Mischief, an S Class helmed by Walter Bopp. Ian Maccini and Robert Maccini will helm Blue Lobster and Blue 2, respectively, in the VX One division.

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