The End of Key West Race Week

Author:
Updated:
Original:
key-west-keeper

After three decades of incredible racing out on the aquamarine waters off the “Conch Republic”—not to mention some equally incredible parties—organizers of fabled Quantum Key West Race Week have finally accepted the inevitable and thrown in the towel.

Once the premier event of the winter racing season in North America, the regatta sustained a major body blow during the “Great Recession” and never recovered, thanks to a number of issues, including a changing overall sailing and economic environment; competition from other regattas like, Charleston Race Week and an increasingly vibrant Caribbean sailing scene; and the simple fact that it can be a darn long road trip to Key West.

“Many factors led to this difficult decision,” said Storm Trysail Club Commodore Leonard Sitar and Quantum Key West Race Week event chairman John Fisher in a joint statement. “The bottom line is that with declining participation, the event has become heavily dependent upon sponsorship making it unsustainable in its current format.”

At the same time, Sitar and Fisher left the door open for some kind of a similar regatta to possibly take the place of the now dead Key West classic in the future, saying: “Our primary sponsors remain very supportive and the Storm Trysail Club is committed to exploring alternative formats for the future that address changing conditions in our sport. The club anticipates that this could lead to another edition as soon as 2019.”

Here’s hoping to more for high-quality racing off the southern tip of the Lower 48 in years to come. Quantum Key West Race Week is dead. Long live Quantum Key West Race Week!

August 2017

Related

grenadapromo_0

A Grand Grenada Charter

I have often sailed in the swath of more accessible West Indian islands that lie between Antigua and Puerto Rico. But I had never before cruised around any of the islands south of Antigua, so I jumped at the chance last April to step aboard a Lagoon 380 catamaran from Horizon ...read more

SunFast-600x

Video tour: Jeanneau Sun Fast 3300

Jeanneau America's Mike Coe takes SAIL aboard the brand new Sun Fast 3300 for an exclusive tour. This mid-sized stripped-down racing boat has a perfect balance of amenities and weight-saving simplicity to make it a blast to sail. Though it boasts sleeping space for up to six, ...read more

furlex2

Know-how: Installing an Electric Furler

Push-Button Reefing Boats have never been easier to sail, and yet, designers and builders still strive for that extra iota or two of convenience. A case in point is the growing acceptance of powered headsail furlers. Roller-furling headsails are ubiquitous not only on cruising ...read more

New-Lead

Know-how: Modify a Blackwater System

My dissatisfaction with the head and holding tank plumbing arrangement on our 1987 Sabre 38 had grown as we cruised the boat away from the comforts of a marina for longer periods of time. When we are tied up at a marina, the use of regular bathrooms generally trumps the ...read more

01-LEAD-Suzuki-55f19d31e297c

Choosing the Right Outboard

Two of the most indispensable items on board a cruising yacht are a dinghy and an outboard motor. At anchor or on a buoy, of course, they are your only means of getting ashore. They also have a thousand other uses. For example, they can allow you to motor across to friends’ ...read more

2019-giftGuide

2019 Holiday Gift Guide

Sailing America Rizzoli International Publications has released this striking portrait of American sailing by nautical photography legend Onne van der Wal just in time for the holidays. Featuring 200 stunning photographs spanning the length and breadth of the sailing scene—from ...read more

01-Sailing-La-Vagabonde,-Outremer-48

Cruising: the Vagabonde Life

Once upon a time conquering your dream of sailing off into the sunset was enough, but these days it seems like you have to be popular on social media too. Balancing the stresses of sailing around the world while keeping a successful—not to mention financially lucrative—social ...read more

191114

Video: 11th Hour Racing Arrives in Brazil

Team 11th Hour Racing finished in fourth place this past week among the 29 IMOCA 60s competing in the 4,335-mile doublehanded Transat Jacques Vabre race from Le Havre, France, to Salvador de Bahia, Brazil. Aboard were American Charlie Enright and French sailor Pascal Bidégorry, ...read more