The 2008 Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship heads to Miami Beach this week.
The regatta straddles two seasons – the concluding summer schedule in the U.S. and Mediterranean and the upcoming winter events in Florida. To date, eight of the 40-foot racing machines are registered to compete with nine-person teams of the world’s best sailors. Scheduled for November 21-23, the regatta will be preceded by the Farr 40 Match Race Invitational, November 18-19. The racing can be viewed in the waters off Miami Beach. At the conclusion of the Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship, the winning helmsman will receive a Rolex timepiece.
There will be plenty of Olympic, Volvo Ocean Race and America’s Cup talent throughout the competitive fleet, serving as tacticians and filling key roles for professionals, including Terry Hutchinson, who returns to his tactician role on Barking Mad after a successful season at the TP52 MedCup. No stranger to international competition is Jonas Werrer, the Olympic Gold Medalist in the 49er from Denmark, who will fill the role of tactician on Nanoq while regular tactician Bouwe Bekking helms his Telefonica Blue in the Volvo Ocean Race. Talented sailors in the fleet include Bill Hardesty and U.S. Olympian Debbie Capozzi on Donald Wilson’s Convexity (Chicago, Ill.), Morgan Larson on William Douglass’s Goombay Smash, Cameron Appleton and Volvo Ocean Race veteran George Peet on John Demourkas’s Groovederci, Tony Rey on Alex Roeper’s Plenty, and Vasco Vascotto on Nerone.
Making their debut in one design racing will be Sedat Gulcaglayan and Haluk Babacan, a dentist, from Al Tunizade, Instanbul, Turkey with their Farr 40 Team Oguzhan. To put together the team’s program they brought in North Sails’ Dave Scott, who went to Turkey this past summer to race with them in IRC-rated events. The team’s ultimate goal is to compete in the 2009 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship to be held at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in Porto Cervo, Italy.
Title sponsor of the Rolex Farr 40 North American Championship is Rolex Watch U.S.A. with support from SLAM and Harken as well as Edgewater Boats and Southern Spars, both divisions of North Sails.