For many years, the Coast Guard Foundation held charity golf tournaments to raise money to help support enlisted personnel, reservists and their families who suffered a personal or financial loss.
Two years ago, the foundation changed course by looking at an event that seemed more in line with its mission and founded the Coast Guard Foundation Cup, an overnight race that served as a feeder distance race for the biennial Bermuda Race from Newport, R.I., to the British territory.
The inaugural race attracted 18 boats to Annapolis. This year's event, again managed by the Annapolis Yacht Club and sanctioned by the Chesapeake Bay Yacht Racing Association, will be held April 27-28. The start and finish will be in Annapolis harbor.
"After years of having those golf tournaments, we thought we should be doing something more in line with the Coast Guard and its mission," Coast Guard Foundation president Anne Brengle said Friday. "We have been sponsoring boating safety seminars at the Naval Academy, and we wanted to promote the ability of crews to work together safely for the Annapolis-to-Newport race, as well as the Newport-to-Bermuda race."
Brengle said that 64 percent of donors to the foundation subscribe to at least one sailing magazine.
"It's a great fit for us, and we're happy to put it on," she said. "From my experience [as a sailor], the more you can practice together as a crew, the better it is and the safer it is."
According to Linda Ambrose, regatta manager for the Annapolis Yacht Club, the Coast Guard is the only branch of the military service that does not have a morale budget to help its enlisted personnel, reservists and their families.
Ambrose said when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and the Gulf Coast in 2005, more than 30 of the 100 first-responders were members of the Coast Guard who had lost their homes.
Along with supporting the Coast Guard Foundation, the event is a "great feeder sailing race in Annapolis. … It is a fantastic event for sailors to take part in a competitive race and gain experience before the 2013 Annapolis-Newport race later in the year," according to Jim Muldoon, the Coast Guard Foundation director and co-chairman of the event.
Basics are that it is open to both One Design and PHRF (handicap) classes. Boats will range anywhere from 30 to 90 feet depending on entries and both monohulls and multihulls can enter. The courses are chosen for each class based on the predicted wind direction and strength, the morning of the event.
The race is open to sailboats ranging anywhere from 30 feet and 90 feet depending on entries and both monohulls and multihulls can enter. The courses are chosen for each class based on the predicted wind direction and strength, the morning of the event. Course lengths for the 2011 event ranged from 57 to 178 nautical miles, and similar lengths are planned for this year.
For more information on participating in the Coast Guard Foundation Cup, contact Ambrose at 410-263-9147 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For information regarding sponsorship opportunities, contact Lisa Reed of the Coast Guard Foundation at (860) 535-0786 or email@example.com.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun