Save the Date for 2016:
Skipper's Meeting - January 12
Race Starts - January 13
Awards Party - January 15


Recent Race News:

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Great race photos are available by these photographers:

January 16, 2015
That's a Wrap

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All boats are finished in the 40th Annual Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race. Throughout the fleet, crews stayed busy with sail handling, in the VMG running conditions. The crew on IRC Winner Spookie reported performing about sixty gybes on their way down the course, with their hard work resulting in a nine second win over Line Honors Winner Rambler 88. PHRF D Winner Grand Cru reported a similar experience, as did just about everyone else. Bill Bollin and crew on the Melges 32 Badfish scored a big win in the PHRF Fleet and PHRF A, fending off a big push from the turbocharged Melges 30 Peerless, and showing that there is another Great Lakes legend that heads south for the winter.

Eamonn deLisser and Jim Bill won a fight to the finish on the last tack in their first Ft Lauderdale to Key West Race with their new (to them) Farr 395 Senara. Rating even with and trailing close behind last year's overall winner Dragon Fly Plus, Senara ground the big Swan down on the light uphill climb to the finish. Clearly benefitting from the best looking crew in the fleet (despite Eamonn), Senara closed with a finish to match their stellar start.

Tom Andrews' Hobie 33 "Holy Toledo! enjoyed the conditions, taking the ride down the coast, to a PHRF C Class win, and coveted bragging rights over the other Hobie 33, Mirage.

Tom Reese's Flight Simulator won the Multihull Class (again), over last year's winner Double Trouble. In third was William Rey/Shake-A-Leg's Impossible Dream with a great finish.

After race festivities continue today at the upstairs bar at Turtle Kraals, with the Awards Party beginning at 5:00. Thank you to Lauderdale Yacht Club and Storm Trysail Club for hosting this event for these many years, and thank you to the competitors, who keep coming back year after year. You make the event what it is. May the next 40 Ft Lauderdale to Key West Races be as successful as the first 40.

- SORC Media

January 15, 2015
Early to Rise

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All IRC Class boats have now finished, and Steve and Heidi Benjamin's Spookie is the preliminary winner. Spookie had the best start of the 40th Annual LYC/STC Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race, and turned that into a razor-thin corrected time margin over Line Honors Winner Rambler 88. George David's JYD 88 had an amazing first race, leaving the rest of the fleet far behind. Rambler may have arrived in Ft. Lauderdale with seconds to spare before the start, but she arrived in Key West just nine seconds too late.

The Carkeek 40 hit the starting line hard, with full-on speed and clear air, and was pushed throughout the race by Chessie Racing and Privateer. That nine second margin may well have come from the start, when Rambler took a few moments to really get going. See the video of the IRC start here. Spookie Skipper Steve Benjamin estimates that the crew did upwards of sixty gybes during the race. Rambler's track showed them taking some long hitches offshore, any of which could account for more seconds than it took you to read this sentence...and decide the outcome of the race.

There is a lesson in this, especially for the youngsters. Every second is important in every race. Take a moment to think about that.

- SORC Media.

Ramble On

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Several hours ahead of the next boat, Rambler 88 crosses the finish line first. Not a record breaking year, but a very quick first race for this new sailing machine.

January 14, 2015
Downhill They Go!

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All boats were "All Clear" as they begin their downwind run to Key West. Visit our Facebook page for more coverage, and the Race Tracking to see them live.

January 12, 2015
Weather or Not?
A forty-two boat fleet is set, and ready to race the 40th Annual Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race, hosted by Lauderdale Yacht Club and Storm Trysail Club.  The early forecast shows a mixed bag, with light northeasterlies at Wednedsay afternoon’s start giving way to stout northwesterlies on Thursday.  As it did last year, the timing of that shift will play a major role in determining which team has the biggest night at Friday night’s Awards Party at Kelly’s Caribbean Bar, Grill and Brewery (beginning at 17:00). 
The IRC Class is loaded from top to bottom, with George David’s new Rambler 88 entered in its first race, looking like a threat to grab line honors from last year’s first-to-finish winner, Ron O’Hanley’s Privateer.  Last year’s class winner, Steve and Heidi Benjamin’s Spookie is back for more, with a new rig and same old Benji competitiveness.  Other contenders lurk in this class, be it Leo van den Thillart’s revised and updated Kernan 47 True, or the current Nassau Cup Champion Rim Shot, Russell Dunn’s Beneteau 36.7. 

First time entries could play a role in the PHRF Fleet, with Dave Maraj’s Oyster 575 24-Heures already winning the Lime Cup and Wirth Munroe Palm Beach Race in its first season.  Also fresh from production is Jack Hutchings’ Oyster 66 Columbo Breeze, newly arrived in South Florida after spending its first summer on the Great Lakes.  Watch for a big move by either of these boats if that shift materializes as expected.  Last year’s PHRF Fleet Line Honors and Corrected Time winner Dragon Fly Plus, Dr. Ulrich Rohde’s venerable Swan 53, will also be looking for that shift, as it did last year.  If the breeze does not go too far forward, watch for a big finish by another of the race’s newcomers, Great Lakes legend Peerless, the modified Melges 30 that got everyone’s attention when it went south to do the 2012 Harvest Moon Regatta in Texas and took monohull line honors. 

Don Balthasar’s Catana 58 catamaran will also be looking for the big westward shift, as well as a repeat performance of last year’s Multihull Class win. 

Registration will begin at 16:00 Tuesday, January 13, at the Lauderdale Yacht Club, with Race Chairman Joel Bowie kicking off the Skippers Meeting at 18:30, followed by Cocktails and Dinner scheduled for 19:00. The first scheduled start is at 13:00 on Wednesday, January 14, off of Ft. Lauderdale.  Race management is once again provided by the Southern Ocean Racing Conference. 

-SORC Media.

January 2, 2015
Ready to Head South?
36-24-34:  Measurements to get any sailor’s attention, particularly when they refer to today’s temperatures in Newport, RI, Portland, ME, and Annapolis, MD.    Those temps are not exactly conducive to good sailing conditions.  It was 75-degrees in Key West today.  The breeze off of Key West was 15 knots, at 030 degrees.  It does not take a math whiz to know that those numbers add up to a stellar trip to Key West.

Lauderdale Yacht Club, Storm Trysail Club, and the Southern Ocean Racing Conference welcome your participation in the 40th Annual Ft. Lauderdale to Key West Race.  What began 40 years ago as an idea for getting boats around to the west coast of Florida for the start of the SORC is set to begin in just over a month, with the Skippers Meeting at Lauderdale Yacht Club on January 13, 2015, and the start on January 14.  The after race party and awards presentation will be held at Kelly’s Caribbean Restaurant in Key West, on January 16.

Do not miss the 40th Anniversary festivities.  Escape the cold temperatures and enjoy the hot action. Watch this page for more information.  Race documents are available here.

- SORC Media



Multihull Record Holder:
Custom 60 - Stars and Stripes
Steve and Scott Liebel
8 hours 31 min 4 sec
Stars and Stripes
Photo courtesy of  William E. Spruance
Monohull Record Holder
R/P 81 - Carrera
Joe Dockery
10 hours 24 min 2 sec


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