Cabo Race: Big effort, Big fun

Published on January 17th, 2023

Highlights of the California offshore circuit include two races to Mexico: San Diego to Puerto Vallarta in even years and the Newport Beach to Cabo San Lucas in odd years, with the later having staggered starts on March 10 and 11.

Hosted by Newport Harbor Yacht Club, Certified Race Officer Dwight Belden offers a preview of the 2023 race:

What edition is the 2023 race? Have they all gone to Cabo?
The 800 nm course to Cabo is quite popular with all the races finishing there since the early 1970s. There was a decade break so not sure what edition we are on but we have a lot of boats set to go in March.

There is nice entry growth from 2021. Any secrets?
As our race is an ideal warm-up to the biennial Transpac Race which starts in June, we aggressively contacted teams that would likely be racing to Hawaii. Hopefully it also helped that the 2021 post-race party was a lot of fun along with excitement from the elapsed record set by Pyewacket 70 of 01:21:22:53.

With the two Mexican races, is this a good schedule?
There previously were more, so our focus now is to work with San Diego Yacht Club to compare calendars as appropriate so we don’t overlap and make sure not to overschedule.

What are some of the hurdles to overcome for entry?
Time and money. Also, the marina in Cabo is very full. However, it is hard to beat arriving at a resort city where we maximize the fun, and it is an easy flight back to reality.

Hosting an international distance race is a big undertaking.
It costs the club a lot of resources to put on ocean races, but we have many members competing with their boats or on other entrants. We enjoy the event as do the racers who are usually very happy when they hit the dock in Cabo.

What is the overall time record:
In 2015, H.L. Enloe’s ORMA 60 Mighty Merloe set the multihull and overall record of 01:16:14:14.

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