Rosebud Team DYT (Photo by Clemens Van Der Werf)

Rosebud Team DYT (Photo by Clemens Van Der Werf)

Rosebud/Team DYT, the Farr-designed STP65, sailed by owner Roger Sturgeon of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., has won the 2009 US-IRC Gulf Stream Series (GSS) Trophy.  The award will be presented next summer at the New York Yacht Club Race Week at Newport presented by Rolex, which will also host the 2010 Rolex US-IRC National Championship from July 21-24.

 “The US-IRC Gulf Stream Series is a fantastic way to judge sailboats on a level playing field,” said Sturgeon. “There were plenty of different inshore and offshore races that we could enter to qualify for the series, and the comprehensive ratings system allowed for boats to be ranked against each other in an extremely fair manner.  Rosebud/Team DYT is optimized for all-around racing, not just downwind or upwind, and this series is a true test of all racing conditions.  The GSS scoring formula is complicated enough that we didn’t know if we actually won the series.  It is an honor we proudly accept, and we challenge others to campaign their way to the top next year.”

 On the way to winning the fourth annual US-IRC GSS, Rosebud/Team DYT logged some impressive finishes.  It finished first in the Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race, Pineapple Cup Montego Bay Race, Ft. Lauderdale to Charleston Race and Block Island Race Week presented by Rolex.  It also finished second in the Acura Key West Race Week and the New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta presented by Rolex before going to Europe where its successful season there ended with a fallen rig in rough conditions at the Rolex Middle Sea Race.

 Finishing second overall for the 2009 US-IRC GSS series was Privateer, a Cookson 50 owned and skippered by Ron O’Hanley (Ipswich, Mass.).  The boat finished first at the Pineapple Cup Montego Bay Race and Block Island Race Week, second in the Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race, Acura Key West Race Week and New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta, and third at the Ida Lewis Distance Race.

 “US-IRC is delighted to have had two excellent programs at the top of this year’s GSS,” said US-IRC President John Brim, who won the series in 2008. “The wide range of events these two boats entered in 2009 show the great diversity of the Gulf Stream Series, and we are looking forward to an exciting and expanded series for 2010.”

 Brim explained that 19 events will make up the 2010 GSS (an increase of three events over last year), with events running  as far north as Newport, R.I., and this year stretching deeper into the Caribbean to include the second running of the RORC’s Caribbean 600.

Privateer, Sail Number USA 50009 (

Privateer, Sail Number USA 50009 Taken During The 2009 International Rolex Regatta( Photo by St. Thomas Yacht Club/Ingrid Abery).


2010 US-IRC Gulf Stream Series Announced


The US-IRC Gulf Stream Series (GSS), America’s only year-long racing series that spans the entire East Coast of the U.S.A. and Caribbean islands, returns for its fifth annual running in 2010 with an expanded list of events that starts with the 2009 Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race (January 13) and ends with the Storm Trysail Club IRC East Coast Championship (October  29-31).


The 2010 series will follow the format of the 2009 series with a few minor differences.


• Yachts will be entered in the series automatically when they compete in their first series event.  All yachts that qualify by sailing the required number of long distance, medium distance and regatta events will be scored for the series.


• The races and regattas will be divided into three groups as they have been in the past.  To qualify for the series a boat must participate in the required number of events from Group 1 – Buoy Races (5 required), Group 2- Medium Distance Races (2 required) and Group 3 – Long Distance Races (1 required).


• The Groups are:


Group 1 – Buoy Races (5 events required)


Key West Race Week, January 13, 2010

Miami Grand Prix, March 4-7, 2010

International Rolex Regatta, March 26-28, 2010

Charleston Race Week, April 8-11, 2010

American Yacht Club Spring Series, April/May 2010

New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta presented by Rolex, June 11-13, 2010

New York Yacht Club Race Week by at Newport presented Rolex/Rolex US-IRC National Championship, July 21-24, 2010

US-IRC Long Island Sound Championship, September 18-19, 2010

American Yacht Club Fall Series, September, 2010

Storm Trysail Club IRC East Coast Championship, October 29-31, 2010


Group 2 – Medium Distance Races (2 events required)


Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race, January 13, 2010

Miami to Nassau Race, November, 2010

Storm Trysail Club Block Island Race, May 21, 2010

Around Long Island Regatta, July 29, 2010

Ida Lewis Distance Race, August 20, 2010

Stamford Vineyard Race, September 3, 2010


Group 3 – Long Distance Races (1 event required)


Ft. Lauderdale to Charleston Race, March 31, 2010

Newport to Bermuda Race, June 18, 2010

Royal Ocean Racing Club Caribbean 600, February 2, 2010


OSTAR (Photo by Colin Merry)

Challenge and Adventure’s Colin Merry in Plymouth for the start of the Ostar Transatlantic Race.

The eagerly anticipated OSTAR (Original Single-handed Trans Atlantic Race) 2009 will set off from Plymouth on Bank Holiday Monday, 25th May.  The skippers are undertaking their final preparations before commencing on their 2,800 mile journey to Rhode Island, USA.   Challenge and Adventure’s Correspondent has been in Plymouth checking out the fleet and will be onhand to bring you coverage and Images of the start on May 25th.

Here are his thoughts on the event today “The overwhelming thought in my mind as I wander amongst the boats taking part in this Ostar is ”they have gotten larger since the last race”. The open forties looking short compared to some! Not only larger but very much more race oriented!

The usual signs of last minute activity, storing up,  repairs and late modifications were all  in evidence. The weather this weekend will be more of the same as today. Good settled weather ensuring a hopefully trouble free send off on Bank holiday Monday. A chance for the Skippers to relax and get to know each other on Friday as they are all invited to Pentillie Castle in Cornwall for cocktails and a BBQ. Then Sunday will be a chance for us (the press) to get a group shots of all participants.
More as it all unfolds, Colin Merry for C&A.

Photos By Colin Merry

(click on image to enlarge)

Thirty-four boats are expected at the start line at Queen Anne’s Battery, Plymouth, home to the hosts of the race, the Royal Western Yacht Club. H.R.H, The Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh, K.G., K.T. will be starting the race at 12.30pm from the Trinity House Vessel, Galatea.

Competitors from all over the globe have entered, with entrants from as far afield as the USA, France, Austria, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Holland and of course, the United Kingdom. Each competitor has been supported by award-winning whisky favourite, Talisker, which has provided them with a bottle for their solo Atlantic crossing. With strong, prevailing winds, an adverse Gulf Stream, hazardous icebergs and dense fog, the drink is sure to be a welcome luxury.

It is expected that the boats will move out from Queen Anne’s Battery Marina into Plymouth Sound at around 10.30am in preparation for the race start. All are welcome to see the boats set sail, with the best views to be found on the historic Barbican, near the Mayflower Steps, or from the Hoe.


David Southwood, Race Director of OSTAR 2009, commented: “With just a week left until the race start you can really feel the tension building. This is one of the most exciting events in the maritime calendar and the world will be watching the progress of the skippers. The RWYC is also thrilled to have Talisker whisky supporting the race and providing the competitors with a bottle for their crossing.”

Brand Manager for Talisker, Steve Wood, comments: “We’re delighted to be the first ever official whisky of OSTAR as it is such an iconic race within the calendar and presents us with a great opportunity to build on Talisker’s heritage with the sea. We send our best wishes and fair winds to all of those taking part in the race!”

The Royal Western Yacht Club has organised a number of spectator boats which have spaces available to the public. These will depart from the Barbican at 10.30am and return at 2pm, providing spectacular views across the Sound and of the competitors. Tickets cost just £6 for children and £12 for adults.

The OSTAR, run exclusively by the Royal Western Yacht Club since its inception in 1960, is the Original Single-handed Trans-Atlantic Race. This event, which is the oldest solo ocean race in history and Corinthian in nature, is primarily for amateur sailors and aspiring professionals and follows in the tradition of the original ‘half crown’ bet between Blondie Haslar and Francis Chichester. The OSTAR 2009 will be the thirteenth edition of the race and follows the traditional route from Plymouth to Newport, Rhode Island.