Desert Oasis Racing

The AYC Birthday Regatta and 15th Leukemia Cup (January 16-18) promises to serve up three days of blue-sky racing
Author:
Updated:
Original:
 The Arizona Yacht Club is celebrating 55 years of sailing on Lake Pleasant

The Arizona Yacht Club is celebrating 55 years of sailing on Lake Pleasant

While landlocked Arizona isn’t exactly a sailing Mecca, this isn’t stopping the Arizona Yacht Club (AYC– arizonayachtclub.org) from celebrating its 55th anniversary in style. The AYC Birthday Regatta and 15th Leukemia Cup (January 16-18) promises to serve up three days of blue-sky racing and “desert hospitality” on the waters of Lake Pleasant for sailors competing in a wide-variety of one design, PHRF (both spinnaker and non-spinnaker) and multihull classes, as well as a cruising division. More than 200 sailors racing aboard 70-plus boats are expected to participate in an event that can legitimately be billed as a wilderness sailing experience. 

The Leukemia Cup racing takes place on Saturday, January 17, with raised monies befitting the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. “For me, there are three things that are just great about the event,” says Dave Scobie of Sage Marine, a multi-year veteran of the event who sails a Sage 17 pocket-cruiser. “First is the incorporation of the Leukemia Cup and gathering funds for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Second is [that] the AYC does a great job organizing the event from registration, [race committee] and evening activities. Third are the people—great bunch of folks there to enjoy sailing.”

Participating racers can look forward to warm days, plenty of breeze and the rather unusual (for a regatta) nighttime symphony of howling coyotes and daytime sights of saguaro and ocotillo cacti, all against the dramatic backdrop of Arizona’s Black Mountains. “Lake Pleasant is a great location,” says Scobie. “The winds are predictable—strong in the morning from the south, then around noon, the wind dies for about an hour and shifts to the north and builds.” This makes for dynamic conditions—from rail-in-the-water smiles and excitement to desert drifters—that test different skill sets, all while benefitting a great cause and celebrating a fine sailing institution.

Related

ASA-2048

Get out and Sail: Virtually

Just because you’re stuck at home self-quarantining, that’s no reason you can’t still hone your skills or teach someone else you know about boathandling with the American Sailing Association’s online Sailing Challenge game. Created in cooperation with Nolan Bushnell, a longtime ...read more

200324-VirtualSailing-2048

Time to Try Virtual Sailboat Racing?

Stuck at home self-quarantining? How about giving on-line sailboat racing a try? Begun in 2010 and now working in partnership with sailing’s international governing body, World Sailing, Virtual Regatta has long allowed fans to take an active part in everything from the Vendée ...read more

2003-ICW

How Risky is the ICW with Covid-19?

Being a cruising sailor, one is already practicing a kind of social distancing. But coastal cruisers, and those transiting the Intracoastal Waterway, in particular, still have to return to land for re-provisioning and things like water, fuel, and pump-outs. When you dock in a ...read more

05-Q&A-190826-11HRT-AMO-team-announcement-113

A Chat with Charlie Enright

Rhode Island native Charlie Enright, 35, has competed in not one but two Volvo Ocean Races (VOR), with Team Alvimedica in 2014-15 and Vestas 11th Hour Racing 2017-18. More recently, Enright and 11th Hour Racing have announced they plan to compete in The Ocean Race, the successor ...read more

06-Smoke-on-the-waterways,-SC

Cruising: a Long Haul North

There are many mantras experienced cruisers like to pass on to those less experienced. First and foremost among these is: “Never sail to a schedule.” After that comes: “Choose your weather window carefully.” Unfortunately, this past spring, my husband, Brian, and I violated both ...read more

The-Solent's-rough-seas-and-harsh-weahter-teach-valuable-skills-for-any-serious-sailor-(by-Eric-Vohr)

How to Become a Yacht Master

Learning to sail is an organic process. Often we’re introduced to the sport by a family member or good friend who loves sailing and wants to share their passion. As such, one learns in bits and pieces. The problem is you can end up with lots of missing bits, and thus many ...read more

IMG_2012

Experience: Threading the Needle in a Thick Fog

It was a dark night, utterly black. Any light was blanketed by the fog. My chartplotter was night-blinding me. I looked at the Navionics map on my phone, waited half a second for my eyes to adjust and then looked at the depthsounder. After that, I looked ahead to where Laura was ...read more

01a-LEAD-Franctional-rig-X-yachts-X-4.9-20180313-MICK-4845

Know-how: Modern Rigs 101

I pretty much took rigs for granted when I first started sailing on other people’s boats. After all, unlike exciting, moving, tweakable things like sails and running rigging, masts and booms were just there—a part of the structure of the boat. I took no part in their maintenance ...read more