When the finish line begins the vacation

Published on May 24th, 2022

The 2022 Bayview Mackinac Race gets underway on July 16, with competitors on either the Cove Island Course (290nm) or the Shore Course (204nm), both starting in southern Lake Huron and finishing at Mackinac Island, located between Michigan’s Upper and Lower peninsulas.

For centuries, visitors have found this island as an ideal vacation spot. No cars. No chain hotels. Just world-famous Mackinac Island Fudge, historic Fort Mackinac, unique shopping, and diverse dining. Unforgettable sunsets, awe-inspiring sunrises, and extraordinary nightlife befit its ranking as a Top 10 U.S. Island by TripAdvisor and USA Today.

With 177 current entrants, Bayview Yacht Club race chair Chris Clark offers this update from behind the scenes:

• Protests will NOT be heard on Mackinac Island. Protests will be heard at Bayview Yacht Club sometime between July 20 and August 31. This may impact giving out the flags on the island. Why are we doing this? Supporting a protest committee is VERY expensive, even more so if it is an International Jury. One option we have used in the past, web meeting protests, are thought to be unfair by many jurors. When forced to make a tradeoff between increasing entry fees and cutting back the party on the island vs. having a jury on the island? For me, the decision is simple. We will do the protests, if any, at BYC.

• The future of our sport depends on taking care of our environment. Over the last five years, while I have been on the Mackinac Race Authority, we have consciously taken steps to improve and move up the “Green” scale. Reducing printed material, online notice boards, virtual marks, and elimination of bow stickers are just some of the steps we have taken. Granted, some of these were facilitated by the pandemic, but we must maintain the ground we have gained.

To that end, we have registered as a Clean Regatta with Sailors for the Sea. As with any cultural change, the first step is awareness. The event is working hard to improve; we now need our competitors to become more aware and start taking action. As Sailors for the Sea states, it is not about perfection; it is about progress. For information to consider and start implementing on your boats, click here.

• Issuing a rating is not just a single person or entity’s work. Ratings are issued by a coordinated effort between a Member National Authority (MNA) and the ORC. For most Bayview Mackinac participants, the MNA is either US Sailing or Sail Canada. I was just on a USA-wide web meeting with all the yacht clubs running offshore handicap races in 2022, and US Sailing emphasized that Handicap Certificates, regardless of certificate type (ORC/ORR), are being processed in the order of need, not the order submitted. This does not mean you can hold off on submitting your application.

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