Small boats are a real test of sailing ability. Many people think its easier to make the transition from dinghies to big boats than the other way around. The immediacy of dinghy racing hones tactical skills and sharpens sail handling and helming proficiencies, all of which translates well to PHRF racing. Besides, its a heck of a lot of fun!
Since 1991 SSSS has been racing all types of dinghies under the Portsmouth Yardstick, a handicapping system with variable handicaps based on wind strength. The races are open to anyone who wants to race. Theres no special race fee. You dont even have to be a SSSS member to take part in these races.
We race over the mud flats north of KGY Radio and Swantown Marina, see chart. We try to get the first race off by 1830 and will run as many as is reasonable under the wind and weather conditions. Show up with your boat and make sure that the RC boat gets your name and type of boat, or call the RC Chair to pre-register.
For more information, see the sailing instructions and the race schedule.
Over the last several years, SSSS has developed a substantial Star fleet. Stars have been around since 1911, and have been an Olympic class keelboat since 1932. With its simple but versatile rig, the Star is suited for everyone from novice sailors to performance racers.
In 2001, Bill Brosius decided it was time to get more Stars racing locally so he would have others to race with. He formed the Budd Inlet Star Fleet, which is now one of the largest recognized Star fleets in District 6 of the International Star Class Yacht Racing Association. Bill searches the country for used Stars, focusing in particular on boats with hull numbers in the 5000-6000 range. By concentrating on older boats in a similar age range, SSSS has established a very competitive one-design race class. The older boats also enable people to get into Star racing for very little money often less than $1,500 will buy you a boat, sails, and trailer. A growing group of Star racers will help you fine tune your rig.
While Stars are encouraged to race with other dinghies and even participate in the Fall and Spring PHRF races, there are also one-design race nights in the summer dedicated to the Stars. They alternate weeks with the regular dinghy races. This is competitive, in-your-face racing fun unlike anything else youll find in South Sound.
For more information, see the Star Fleet web page.