Offshore Passage Opportunities


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Rally to the Cup

The American's Cup is coming to Bermuda next year (June 2017). You, your crew and your boat can be there to live the experience, watch the the races and be part of the action ashore.

2017 Rally Map

The Rally

2017 Rally Organizer Hank Schmitt

Offshore Passage Opportunities, The Number One crew Network in North America, and Hank Schmitt (who organizes the annual NARC or North Atlantic Rally to the Caribbean) each November are organizing The Rally to the Cup.

This is the opportunity to sail your boat to Bermuda to participate in the Americas Cup activities—or crew on someone else's boat. Boats depart from six East Coast ports on June 10, 2017 arriving in Bermuda around June 15 or 16.

The Americans Cup race begins on June 17, 2017!

 

Video Summary

See and hear more about the upcoming Rally to the Cup 2017.

Length of Stay

That is entirely up to you, the boat owner. The Cup event begins on Saturday, June 17 and will run for at least 7 days, perhaps as long as two weeks -- depending on the competition.

Sailing to Bermuda in June

2017 Rally Winds

There's hardly a better time to sail to Bermuda than in June. The Newport to Bermuda and the Marion to Bermuda races both take place in alternate Junes. While the annual Hurricane Season begins June 1, the historical chance of a hurricane in June is less than one Tropical Storms that month -- compared to 2.5 storms in September, and 4.5 storms in October.

The winds are favorite more than 75% of the time, blowing Southeast to Southwest from Florida north to New England. For most boats the 5 to 6 day voyage will a beam reach most of the way. The Atlantic Pilot Charts (above) indicate winds southeast to south to southwest, force 4; 11 to 16 knots. The chance of a gale is practically 0 and the chance of a calm is 0 to 3%

So what are you waiting for? This is a once in life time opportunity.

Departure Weather Forecast and Way Points

Weather Routing, Inc. is providing our pre-departure whether briefing, as they do for the NARC and ARC rallies each year. They will provide a complete picture of what to expend for winds and seas, fronts and possible lows. They will provide Gulf Stream crossing way points, and weather windows. Captains who want SatPhone updates enroute can contact Weather Routers, Inc. directly at http://www.wriwx.com

Departure Ports and Partners

We have partnered with sailing organizations in five East Coast ports to handle yacht departures for Bermuda. Partners are arranging dockage for departing boats, space ashore for crews to gather and socialize, provide the weather briefing from Weather Routers, Inc, and host a send off dinner the night before departure. Our partners include:

  • Hinckley Yacht Services, Southwest Harbor, ME
  • Offshore Passage Opportunities, Newport, RI
  • Raritan Yacht Club, NJ / New York Harbor
  • National Sailing Hall of Fame (NSHOF), Annapolis, MD
  • Ocean Sailing Academy, Charleston, SC
  • Palm Beach Sailing Club, West Palm Beach, FL

 

Offshore Opportunity Passage Members

For OPO members who want to crew on yachts heading to or from Bermuda, SailOPO will be sending you contact information from owners looking for crew.

Boat Owners and Skippers

For owners and delivery skippers, SailOPO has a roster of over 500 members who are interested in gaining offshore experience, and will pay their way to and from the boat. OPO also has pro skippers and experienced mates -- ready to ferry your boat to or from Bermuda or come along was a paid mentor.

Join SailOPO and Come on Along!

2017 Rally: Travel with OPO

Membership in OPO is the fastest way to gain real hands-on experience crewing on an offshore sailing vessel—sailing to Bermuda and/or the Caribbean. . . join a yacht for a delivery down the coast. Throughout the year, Members receive crew postings for deliveries, owners looking for weekend crew, yachts heading off around the world. During the delivery seasons, dozen of such posting arrive in your email basket each week. All it takes is for you to get yourself to the boat and back home after the voyage. All on board expenses are covered by the owner.

Initial membership is $199, with annual fees of $125 thereafter.

Professional delivery skipper Jacob Murray and the crew on a recent delivery to Bermuda explain in this short video.

If you are a sailor, with a basic knowledge of sailing, watch standing and crewing on a large yacht, and you want to join a yacht headed to Bermuda for the Americans Cup, or some other port of call then join SailOPO today.

Yacht Owners: First Offshore Voyage?

If this is your first offshore voyage as a boat owner, SailOPO can put an experienced professional skipper aboard, or a mate with offshore experience to mentor you before and during the voyage. Local knowledge in Bermuda waters is essential.

Crew Positions: First Offshore Voyage?

For individual sailors making their first offshore voyage, SailOPO has its Swan Program. You can secure a bunk on a fully equipped and professionally skippered Swan 48 for the voyage to or from Bermuda, for more information click here. This fee includes all meals and beverages while underway and a guaranteed bunk at if you elect to remain on in Bermuda to join the festivities.

What's It Like?

St. Georges, Bermuda

  • 2017 Rally: St. George
  • 2017 Rally: St. George

Our Anchorage in Bermuda is off the village of St. Georges, Holding is excellent, launch service is available, and facilities ashore are provided. Ordinance Island houses the Customs Building (above right) and the Yachts Service Center with wharf-side dockage.

The Rally to the Cup fleet will be based in well the protected and picturesque harbor of St. Georges on Bermuda's north end. Affordable dockage will be available at the St. Georges' Dinghy Club, where the Rally Headquarters will be based. Yachts preferring to anchor out will have regular launch service to the Club and the town of St. Georges . . . so there's no need to bring your dinghy.

Our Rally Base

Sat. George's a small harbor village at the north end of Bermuda. All arriving yachts are required to check in here and clear customs and immigrations, before proceeding to Hamilton, to an anchorage, or the Dinghy Club. Anchorage is free. There are pubs, restaurants and a market in town, along with banks, ATMs, shops, churches, a tourist office, and bus and ferry service too Hamilton and the Dock Yard at the far southwest corner of the island.

Our Home Away From Home

  • 2017 Rally: St. George
  • 2017 Rally: St. George

The Dinghy Club is our home in Bermuda and has been for the past 15 years of the NARC Ralley. SailOPO has organized the North Atlantic Ralley to the Caribbean, with a stop-over at the Dinghy Club each November and May. Dockage has been reserved for the Rally boats, first come first serve. There is dock-sided water, electricity, WiFi, ice, laundry, showers, and a friendly bar—along with a splendid view of the sunset. Breakfast, lunch and special banquets are planned. From here its an easy 10-minute walk into the village off St. Georges. Launch service be available throughout the anchorage. Dock space along the village wall may will also be available. Frequent bus service takes you into Hamilton. Regular ferry service will take you to the Dock Yard and the American Cup Village all departing from St. Georges.

Rally Services in Bermuda

We are partnering with the Bermuda Yachts Services, based at the St. Georges Yachting Center on Ordinance Island, adjacent to Customs and Immigrations. Here you'll find a comfortable lounge, leading library and reading room, desks, WiFi, bathrooms (no showers) and information on island service: banks, sail makers, repair facilities and village side dockage.

2017 Rally: St. George

The St. Georges Yachts Service Center provides fee WiFi, dockage, bathrooms and a gathering spot for crews.

  • 2017 Rally: St. George
  • 2017 Rally: St. George

A comfortable lounge with desks, WiFi, phones and someone to answer your questions and make arrangements for dock space, repair services is on duty each day. Dockage in the village may also be available for Ralley boats.

There is a Bermuda Tourism Office on the docks, with information on ferry and bus service, events and all things Bermudian. For crews at anchor there are bathrooms ashore in the villages and at the Yachting Center. There is a market in the village, as well as pubs, restaurants, shops, boutiques, drug store, Post Office, banks and ATMs.

Costs to Join the Ralley to The Cup

Cost to join the Rally fleet is $199 per boat, plus $150 for each crew member. These fees include the departure and arrival dinners, departure weather briefing from Weather Router, Incorporated, a Rally T-shirt and services at the St George's Yachting Center.

The Cup Race Course

The Cup's race course will be held in Great Sound, on the southern end of the island. This is accessible by private yacht or commercial ferry, from St. Georges and Hamilton, Bermuda's principle city. The course (it appears) ends with the finish line off the city of Hamilton, at the Cruise Ship Wharf, where spectator space and services are bring provided.

Watching the American's Cup

2017 Rally: Watching the Cup

The American's Cup is a world class event, with big boats flying around the course in Great Sound on hydrofoils. The races can be watched from the deck of your own boat, a spectator ferry, or from ashore. If you take you own boat to Great Sound, be prepared to have your hands full navigating to and through the spectator fleet. A less stressful option is to watched on large video screens at the Dinghy Club, and most of pubs throughout Bermuda. Then, in the evening join the festivities at the Americans Cup Village at the Dock Yard.

The American Cup Village

2017 Rally: Cup Village

The shore-side action will be in the City of Hamilton and at the Dockyard, a former British naval facility, a sprawling fort, parade grounds, spar yards and now berths for cruise ships. The old fort is being turned into American Cup Village. Evening concerts, food tents, sponsor pavilions—are all yet to be scheduled.

We'll have more information as it becomes available, or check the link below for the Americans Cup Bermuda website.

2017 Rally: Cup Village

The Cup is a year away, so while all the events are still being planned, now is the time to make your plans to sail your boat, or join someone else's boat and on a voyage of a life-time . . . The American's Cup in Bermuda.

Stay tuned to SailOPO.com for updates on the Rally to The Cup.

For information on the Cup events, schedule, site map and history, click http://www.gotobermuda.com/The-35th-Americas-Cup/