The Coastal Classic is offering a cruising rally as part of the well known race for those wanting a more relaxed kind of journey north.
The all new cruising rally is aimed at production boats and cruisers that would like to take part in the race but avoid the hectic start line and necessity of a handicap.
“Starting an hour earlier than the race fleet will mean the cruising boats get away in a nice clear start and can enjoy the sight of the big boats racing past,” says race spokesperson Greer Houston, commodore of the New Zealand Multihull Yacht Club.
“Once in Russell, they can enjoy the fun and festivities, take part in the party and utilise the water taxis.”
Prospective entrants will not need a PHRF handicap but will need category 3 safety certification from Yachting New Zealand.
The PIC Coastal Classic starts on the morning of Friday, October 20. Sponsored by PIC Insurance Brokers for five years, it is New Zealand’s biggest yacht race and one of the biggest of its type in the world. The race starts off Devonport Wharf in Auckland and finishes off Russell Wharf in the Bay of Islands. The current record of 5 hours and 13 minutes is held by Frank Sailing (formerly known as TeamVodafone).
“We want to create opportunities for people to really enjoy using their boats,” says Raynor Haagh, spokesperson for 36° Brokers who are a major sponsor of the event. “This new rally format harks back to the 1970s and 80s when families took part in events and had a great time, without necessarily being too competitive. They had a picnic, went for a swim and really enjoyed themselves.”
Joining PIC and 36° Brokers are B&G, Zhik, Railblaza, Doyle Stratis, Yachting New Zealand and Mount Gay Rum, creating a family of sponsors that help deliver this great race each year since 1984.