Classic Boat Rally

The Classic Boat Rally

Savannah – Hilton Head – Beaufort (SC)


Cancelled for 2020


Organized under the authority of

 Beaufort Yacht and Sailing Club

co-hosted by

Savannah Yacht Club


South Carolina Yacht Club


Event Chairman:  S. W. “Woody” Norwood

Director: Andrew “Andy” Fishkind

Principal Race Officer: Randall Swan


Notice of Race


Welcome to the twelth annual Classic Boat Rally (“CBR”) being held on the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) for non-planing (displacement) sailboats having an overall length of at least 16 feet, combining the adventure of long distance sailing on the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) with pursuit-format racing daily along the journey, and sharing social interaction on shore in the evenings.

  1. RULES

1.1       The races will be governed by the rules as defined in Racing Rules of Sailing.


2.1       The event will be open to up to a limited number of pre-registered sailing vessels.

2.2       All participating vessels shall be non-planing sailboats having an overall length (stem to stern) of at least 16 feet.

2.2       All participating boats must have on board a functioning motor capable of propelling the boat at a speed of at least 3.5 knots and sufficient fuel/energy to run 8 consecutive hours. The Chairman may grant an exception to this rule if the participant has an accompanying boat capable of towing at these speeds and distances.

2.3       “Classic Design” is defined as sailboats other than those designed primarily for one-design fleet racing and must be approved by the Chairman. Examples of approved classes are Herreshoff 12 ½ (including “Doughdish”), Montgomerys, Cape Dorys, all displacement catboats, West Wight Potters, Precisions, Ensign, Pacific Seacrafts (especially Flickas), and Bristol. Other designs are welcome within the spirit of the event upon approval of the Chairman.

2.4       Registration Form must be completed, and fees paid and received by the event Chairman not later than April 15, 2018 to qualify for the Early Registration discount. Acceptance is open only to the first 15 registered vessels.


3.1       The Classic Event Participation Fee is $100 per participating boat. The One-Day Participation Fee is $50. A discount is available for Early Registration (up to April 10, 2018. Early registration fees are $75 for the event or $40 for one day.

3.2       Meals, beverages, and off-boat housing are additional.

3.3       Additional expenses may include your personal housing, meals, and a launch fee only if launching or taking out at a location other than at a host club. You are on your own for breakfast and lunch. There will be no dock fees at the yacht clubs or charges for ramp launching and retrieval.


4.1       It is the sole responsibility of each participant to decide, each day, whether to participate, whether to wear a PFD, whether to continue to sail, and how to respond to changing weather, sea, and tidal conditions.

4.2       All participating boats are required to have safety equipment on board in conformity with Coast Guard regulations. The Race Committee may inspect each boat for having on board at least one wearable Coast Guard approved Personal Flotation Device (PFD) per person on board, one USCG Type 4 PFD (throwable), an adequate bailing device (pump or bucket) unless the boat has a functional self-draining cockpit, a distress noise maker (horn or whistle), and a suitable anchor with at least 150 feet of rode. Sponges and sail bags are not considered adequate bailing devices. Night bow and stern navigation lights are required to be on board either properly fixed to the hull or capable of being attached properly in the event of the necessity of navigating after sundown. A flashlight or beam is also required to be on board.

4.3       All participating boats must have on board a compass and up-to-date, detailed navigational charts applicable to the area being sailed each day (subject to inspection by the Race Committee). The Maptech ChartKit (Norfolk to Florida) is highly recommended as the best chart set for the entire event. As a further aid, it is highly recommended that each boat have a GPS unit showing depths and channel boundaries for the applicable area.

4.4       All participating boats must have a functioning hand-held or installed VHF radio on board plus one back-up VHF radio and ample batteries. The Race Committee will call for reporting in by each participating boat via VHF radio, and significant communications regarding the course, course changes, and weather conditions will be made and received via VHF radio. Participants may speak with each other on the VHF radio but are subject to disqualification based on sportsmanship if the communication relates to supplying a competitive advantage.

4.5       All participants must have sufficient food and water on board for a day for all individuals that will be on board.

4.6       It is the obligation of the nearest boat to render help to any other participating boat that is in distress, and the Race Committee will make time adjustments for time lost in rendering such assistance. Neither a helping vessel nor the Race Committee is required to stay with a grounded vessel longer than 15 minutes, and the Race Committee may proceed to finish the route after rendering whatever assistance is reasonably possible for a period of up to 15 minutes.

4.7       Engines may be used to avoid dangerous situations. If a motor is used, the skipper must report such motor usage to enable the Race Committee to make appropriate time allowances. The time running the engine in neutral does not have to be reported.

4.8       Participants found not in compliance with the safety aspects described in this section are subject to being restricted from sailing in the event until compliance is achieved, and to disqualification from one or more of the day’s races if the non-compliance is found after the races have begun for the day.


Note: The distances and starting times are approximate at this time and will be fine tuned by the Race Committee in the Sailing Instructions to be issued prior to the commencement of the event.

 Date    Day     Time   Description                        

4/25     Wed        4:00    Register with Savannah Yacht Club for temporary Cards

5:00    Cocktails at SYC (Cash bar – temporary cards)

6:30    Dinner at SYC (Family Night Buffet)

4/26     Thurs     8:00    Participants’ Meeting at SYC

8:30    Depart docks at SYC for start of first race, 2nd to follow

Total distance sailing is 23.5 nautical miles (nm)

                             3-4 PM Arrive SCYC, Windmill Harbour, Hilton Head Island, Register for Cards

5:30     Concurs d’Elegance Judging (“Most Bristol”, “Most Authentic”)

5:30     Cocktails at SCYC (Cash Bar – temporary cards)

7:00     Dinner at SCYC (Blazers or Sports Coats required)

4/27     Fri           9:15     Participants’ Meeting, the dock at SCYC

9:30     Depart SCYC Dock, through lock for 1st race, 2nd to follow

Total Distance 17.5 nautical miles (nm)

3-4 PM Arrive BYSC, Ladys Island, Beaufort

5:00     Libations and Awards on the dock at BYSC (High tide 8:32 PM, Sunset 8:01PM)

6:30     Monthly Pot Luck Dinner at BYSC (please bring something to share)


6.1       The “pursuit” format will be used in all races. The boats with the highest PHRF handicap (the slowest) will start first, and the lowest PHRF (the fastest) will start last. The time differential between the start of the participating boats will be determined by the Race Committee based on the handicap applied to the length of the race. The Time on Distance formula will be used in applying the PHRF handicaps.

6.2       A PHRF Committee will be appointed by the Event Chairman consisting of the Chairman and at least two other individuals. This committee will be responsible for making decisions regarding handicaps used in the Classic Boat Rally only.

6.3       Generally, all participants in a given “Class” (same boat specifications) will have the same handicap rating. However, the PHRF Committee may penalize any boat not conforming with class rules regarding sail size, rigging, controls, ballast, or bottom paint (lacking).

6.4        PHRF certificates are not required. Published resources will be used, where available, to determine each class’ base PHRF handicap. Published resources include, but are not limited to, New England Region or Western Long Island Sound Region or U.S. Sailing. The PHRF Committee will resolve differences among published sources. Adjustments from base PHRF ratings may be made by the PHRF Committee in advance of a race day depending on factors such as equipment, rig, sail plan, weight, and other factors in the sole judgment of the PHRF Committee. The PHRF Committee will assign handicap ratings for boats not having a published PHRF rating or certificate based on the judgment of the PHRF Committee. The PHRF Committee’s decision regarding each vessel’s PHRF will be final. 

6.5       In application, differences in handicap ratings between the boats represent the number of seconds per mile of racing that, if the boats are sailed to their performance expectations, would make them equal in “corrected” time. For example, if one participating boat has a handicap rating of 270 and another has a rating of 300, the 30-point difference means that the boat rated 270 is expected to be 30 seconds faster per nautical mile than the one rated 300. If the race is 10 miles long, the total difference is 300 seconds, or 5 minutes, and the boat rated 300 would start that race 5 minutes ahead of the one rated 270. They would be expected to cross the finish line at the same time.

6.6       The races will be scheduled to be 4 to 14 miles in length and will be between a pre-designated starting line and finish line. The Sailing Instructions will specify the intended daily races; however, the RC may modify these courses to consider weather conditions and other factors that impact the safety and enjoyment of a particular leg of the event and will notify the participants of any changes prior to the start of each race. The Race Committee may adjust the handicap time differentials in case of a shortened course.


The Sailing Instructions will be sent to the owner/skipper of each participating boat in advance of the event as an email attachment and will also be available at participants’ briefings prior to leaving the dock.


8.1       The Racing Area will be on the ICW.

8.2       The courses on each leg of the event will be described in the Sailing Instructions. All government navigational buoys must be observed unless explicitly made optional in the Sailing Instructions or by the Race Committee in advance of the race.


9.1       The Regatta will consist of the two days of sailing; four races scheduled. However, any races that are completed will constitute the Regatta.

9.2       In the pursuit format, first to finish is the winner of each race unless adjustments are made for boats missing a navigational mark, OCS, or in consideration of delays due to assistance given to another participating boat or the use of an engine to avoid a dangerous situation. Failure to make a timely start, or running aground, or equipment failures will not be cause for adjustment.

9.3       A “high Point” system will be used. A “Finisher” is a boat that, having properly started, finishes within twenty minutes of the first boat to finish. The “Time Limit” for each race is twenty minutes after the first boat finishes. Each “finisher” within the “time limit” is awarded one point plus one point for every boat beaten. All others that properly started the race will be scored as having finished one place behind the last boat to finish within the time limit.

9.4       Awards will be given to first, second, and third places at the Awards presentation at BYSC on April 27 at approximately 6:00 PM or 30 minutes after the last boat finishes, whichever is earlier. The “Bunky Helfrich Spirit Award”, the “Most Helpful” award, the “Crab Pot” award, and the awards for the Concurs d’Elégance, including “Most Bristol” for boats older than one year”, and “Most Authentic”, will be given at that time. Awards will not distinguish between Classic or Cruiser as both classes will be sailing the same course with appropriate handicaps.


There is sufficient room at the BYSC to store your trailer and vehicle for the duration of the event. There is no charge for this. Trailers left at Savannah Yacht Club or BYSC must be retrieved and removed by Saturday following the end of the event.


Competitors participate in the event entirely at their own risk.  See Rule 4 in RRS: Decision to Race.  The organizing authority will not accept any liability for material damage or personal injury or death sustained in conjunction with or prior to, during, or after the event.


Any questions may be addressed in advance to the contacts listed below or brought up for discussion at the daily Participants’ Meeting.

Woody Norwood, CBR Chairman

(c) 678-427-2937 (e)

Randall Swan, Principal Race Officer

Send registration and checks to


c/o Woody Norwood

PO Box 2056

Beaufort, SC 29901









Classic Boat Rally



Participation as a sailor in this event is inherently dangerous. The racing area is on the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW). The ICW is open to commercial traffic that has rights of way. Additionally, the courses of the races are, at times, distant from shelter or quick rescue in the event of adverse weather conditions or other developments. Further, the ICW is subject to shifts in the bottom contours (shoaling) that may not be accurately shown on charts or electronic navigation aids. In addition, tides are typically 7 to 9 feet vertically in this area, and tidal currents typically run 1 to 3 knots, causing hazards entering and leaving harbors and sailing under bridges, and often causing significant differences, under sail, between the directions of bearing and heading.

In light of the foregoing, the following will apply to all participants:

The tide takes approximately 6 hours each way to go from low to high and high to low. Going aground can be particularly problematic on an ebbing tide, so getting off a shoal, if grounded, must be done quickly to avoid having to wait for the next rising tide. Each skipper is responsible for making sure he and his crew are prepared, in the event of a solid, immovable grounding, to spend some time on a shoal, unassisted, until the boat is refloated by the next rising tide.   Consequently, the following should be noted:

  • Every participating vessel is responsible for being able to dislodge from a shoal;
  • If a vessel becomes lodged on a shoal, neither the RC nor any other near-by participant will be obligated to render assistance for longer than 15 minutes; and
  • Every boat must be equipped with navigation lights (fixed or portable) and a waterproof flashlight with sufficient battery power for 8 hours of burning time.

As the captain of the vessel described below, I certify that I have read and understand and will comply with the cautionary language above and will be bound by the Racing Rules of Sailing 2017-2020. By entering this regatta, I waive all claims I may have against the organizing authority, the Race Committee, the Host Clubs, and the organizers of this event.

Name__________________________________  Signature________________________________


E-Mail______________________________________ Mobile phone__________________________

Emergency Contact: ______________________________  Phone: ___________________________

Boat Type_________________________ LOA_________ LOW_________ Sail area__________

Displacement__________ Moveable centerboard?_____  Spinnaker?______ PHRF______________

Name of Boat: _________________________________________________

Number of people for dinner: Wednesday, April 25 at SYC______ Thursday, April 26 at SCYC_____, Friday, April 27 at BYSC _______ (Since this is a potluck at BYSC, and if you plan on attending, please make provision to bring some food item for twice your number that can be easily organized after arriving.

Entry Fee: (Checks payable to BYSC) Event $100 ($75 if received prior to April 10)  $_________