December Newsletter

This Bermuda Race Organizing Committee (BROC) newsletter is designed to keep you abreast of developments for the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race®.  This is an informal document and to the extent any information herein differs from that in formal race documents such as the Notice of Race, the formal race documents will supersede this newsletter. Your comments, suggestions and questions may be directed to any of us listed below. We look forward to seeing you all on the starting line for our 49th “Thrash to the Onion Patch” on Friday, June 20, 2014.

Best wishes for the holidays and the New Year,

Fred Deichmann
Chairman, 2014 BROC

Registration Opens January 13

Applications for Entry in the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race may be filed beginning as soon as Monday, January 13, 2014.  Please visit the entry portal as soon thereafter as possible to get started on your entry.  And, remember that the coming holidays are a perfect opportunity to line up your crew for the next “Thrash to the Onion Patch.”

Special Presentations Added to CCA-Bermuda Race Safety Weekend in March

Several special presentations have been added to the Cruising Club of America-Newport Bermuda Race Safety Weekend on March 15-16, 2014 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Goat Island, Newport, R.I.  Always highly regarded and well-attended, this year’s Safety Weekend features a US Sailing sanctioned Safety-At-Sea Seminar on Saturday, plus the following special events on Saturday or Sunday:

  • Hands-on satphone training (Jeff Thomassen, OCENS technical services rep). This will not conflict with the Saturday safety seminar.
  • Seasickness prevention and treatment (Dr. Jeff Wisch, Bermuda Race Medical Chair), as part of the Saturday Safety-at-Sea Seminar
  • Duties of the boat’s medical officer/”ship’s doc” (Dr.  Barbara Masser, emergency room doctor and Bermuda Race Physician), as part of the Sunday Medical Seminar.
  • Preparing your boat, your crew and yourself to race to Bermuda, make the delivery home or cruise offshore. This is the Sunday Race Preparation Seminar.

To register for the Cruising Club of America-Newport Bermuda Race Safety Weekend on March 15-16, 2014, visit the Safety at Sea Page.  Questions may be emailed to

For reservations at the Hyatt Regency Hotel phone (888) 421-1442. Ask for Cruising Club of America rates. Online reservations may be made at: Further information may also be found on this 12/13/14 news update.

Inspection Checklist Posted

The Inspection Checklist for the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race® has been posted on the race inspection pageCompetitors are expected to follow the checklist in preparing their yachts for inspection and for the race itself. The checklist follows very closely the Newport Bermuda Race Safety Requirements (“NBRSR”) posted in November.  As a further aid to competitors, the checklist contains cross-references to the Frequently Asked Questions posted on the race web site.  The checklist posting will be followed soon by an inspection procedures manual.

Inspections, including follow-on inspections to correct deficiencies if necessary, must be completed by 1700 June 6, 2014, the race’s Inspection Deadline.  In addition, Captains will be required to sign and file a Certificate of Condition and Qualifications at registration in Newport before the start, and a Certificate of Compliance after finishing.  Both documents require skippers to affirm, among other things, that their yachts complied in all respects to the NBRSRs from at the start until the finish of the race and any post-race inspection.

Onion Patch Turns 50

2014 is the 50th anniversary of the biennial Onion Patch Series.  In 1962, the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club donated the Onion Patch Trophy for the series and the first competition was held in conjunction with the 1964 Newport Bermuda Race. In 2014, the series will be sailed for the 25th time. Join us in Newport June 14, 2014 for the first of three events, the New York Yacht Club 160th Annual Regatta, and help make the Silver Anniversary Series the biggest and best ever.

All yachts racing in the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race in the St David’s Lighthouse Division or the Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Division are invited to compete in the fantastic Onion Patch events.  The series consists of racing in the New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta, the Newport Bermuda Race and the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Anniversary Regatta.  This is a hard-fought series sailed over three consecutive weeks in June. The Onion Patch is one tough series, a challenge to yacht, skipper and crew to prevail in three spectacular events and venues. When you plan your 2014 racing schedule, be sure to include this tough triathlon of sailboat racing. More at

Race Communications

BROC is pleased to announce that OCENS,a provider of satellite systems and service, weather products and email, voice and data solutions, will continue its association with the Newport Bermuda Race® in 2014. Over the years OCENS has become the premier source for weather and ocean data among the racing community. Hi-Resolution sea-surface temperature data, ocean currents, wind, wave, Gulf Stream data, Bermuda weather service charts, and more are all available from one easy to use source – OCENS WeatherNet, all deliverable via your satellite phone.

OCENS can provide the satellite phone systems that will allow yachts to stay connected to race officials and access race-compliant WeatherNet services while at sea.  40 day satellite phone rentals are offered for the trip (as well as purchase packages for those looking to outfit their vessels for the long haul) for the regular 30 day price of $179.   As in the past six Newport Bermuda races, race-compliant WeatherNet service is free (regularly $99 +downloads) to race participants for the 2014 Bermuda race.

Jeff Thomassen from OCENS will be on hand at the March Safety-At-Sea seminar in Newport providing training for satellite phone operations and overall functionality of the various phones and how to make the best use of them.  OCENS will also have staff on hand in Newport the week prior to the race attending to vessels making sure everything related to OCENS software and service is up-to-date and working correctly (appointments required).

To sign up for the rentals and schedule race check outs visit:

Offshore Racing Opportunities

Upon return from the 2014 Newport Bermuda Race®, blue water sailors who wish to extend their offshore racing season should consider the Corinthians Stonington to Boothbay Harbor Race, starting July 25, 2014 at Stonington, CT.  For more information, see

Blue water sailors may also wish to consider the Transatlantic Race coming  up in the summer of 2015. This race is open to suitably equipped and crewed yachts of 40′ or more.  For further information, see

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