Because it starts in one country and finishes in another, the Newport Bermuda Race is naturally international, and it has drawn entries from many countries. This year there are 20 boats carrying sail numbers prefixed by national abbreviations such as BER (Bermuda), CAN (Canada), GBR (Great Britain), HKG (Hong Kong), IRL (Ireland), NED (Netherlands), and NZL (New Zealand).
But for many people, the race is identified with New England. This year the State of Maine is represented by seven racing boats as well as the Communications and Safety escort vessel Comfort, commanded by Steven Thing. Before the start, one of those Down East boats was the subject of a short documentary that ran on a Portland TV station.
It something about the race that the boat in this story, Rich Stevenson’s Buzz, is a Sydney 38 that originated on the other side of the world, in Australia.