Looking Forward to the Block
Published on June 14th, 2015
Based in San Francisco, J/105 Class President Bruce J. Stone will be making the trip to one of his favorite events: Block Island Race Week on June 21-26. Located 13 miles south of the coast of Rhode Island, this popular vacation destination will be the base for the Storm Trysail Club to run their biennial event. Here Bruce explains why he is a repeat attendee…
There are many great things about Block, and we look forward to this regatta as much as we do the North Americans and Big Boat Series.
It is really special competing at a venue where nobody is on their home court. The island is far enough away from the home port of whatever boat we’re chartering that it is an interesting logistical and navigational exercise just to get there and back, especially considering the tides through The Race when coming from Long Island Sound.
With BIRW, some crew go over by ferry, but every boat has to be delivered, so you pull together some volunteers and share catering, steering and hopefully flying the kite up or back. The delivery alone has been a great memory for many of our teammates.
On the island, we rent bikes to get back and forth between the rental houses and the harbor. Each year, some J/105 owners sponsor a cookout, most recently Mark Masur (#334) who has agreed to host once again, this time sharing the honors with Fred Darlington (#493). Everyone has a chance to meet each other and swap stories.
The marquee race of the week is the Around Island Race, which the Race Committee can spring on us any day, and can send us in either direction. Some short-tack the rocks to avoid adverse current, and others go out for more wind, though it is sometimes better close in.
UPDATE: The organizing committee for the Storm Trysail Club’s 50th anniversary Block Island Race Week has set out an ambitious sustainability program and an important part of the plan is a new smart phone app for use with iOS and Android operating systems. The app will be the primary vehicle for all communications to competitors about Block Island Race Week, including daily notices and results, and will eliminate many forms of paper communication, such as the daily newspaper. Details.