The sailing race returns for the 13th consecutive year this weekend.
CLEARWATER — For the 13th consecutive year, Clearwater Yacht Club will host Laser Mid Winters East Regatta in the Gulf waters off Pier 60 on Clearwater Beach starting today through Sunday.
Laser Mid Winters East regatta draws sailors, their coaches, families, and judges from around the world to the Clearwater Beach area. In the past 12 years, participation ranges from 165 sailors and lasers up to 195 sailors, divided into 5 fleets. Currently, there are 186 sailors registered.
The sailors will launch from yacht club and the beach north of the sailing center.
In addition to the participants, the yacht club coordinates over 60 volunteers on the water in roles including race committee, safety committee, and another 30 volunteers will be landside providing safety, and assisting sailors with meals as well as daily check in and check out.
The Laser is a single-handed racing dinghy. The dinghy is protected by strict one-design rules, which means no changes are allowed to the boat unless they are specifically permitted in the rules. The result is that all Laser boats are virtually identical whether they are brand new or 10 years old, making it the sailor that wins the race, not the boat.
The Laser is a challenging boat that rewards athleticism, subtle steering and trimming techniques, as well as tactical excellence. It is a singlehanded Olympic class for both men and women and is sailed at the club, national and international levels.
The Laser Formula combines one hull with three different rigs: Standard, Radial, and 4.7. Young sailors starting out in the 4.7 can move up rig sizes as they grow physically and develop tactically without the need to buy a complete new boat every few years.
The Laser is the singlehanded dinghy used every four years in the Olympic regatta, with women competing in Laser Radial and men in the Laser Standard.
About Clearwater Yacht Club – Rich in history and tradition, the Clearwater Yacht Club is one of the oldest yacht clubs in the United States. Established in 1911, the club is located on beautiful Clearwater Beach., a gathering place for avid boaters. Enjoying a reputation for warm hospitality, world-class sailing and outstanding dining, Club members and guests value and respect this tradition of excellence. Clearwater Yacht Club can be found at 830 South Bayway Blvd, Clearwater Beach or www.clwyc.org.