The Onion Patch Series, which includes the Newport Bermuda Race, is 3-race series that includes a round-the-buoy race in Newport the week before the Newport Bermuda Race, the Newport Bermuda Race itself, and another weekend of buoy racing once boats have arrived in Bermuda.
Event 1: The NYYC Annual Regatta – These two days of racing, the weekend before the Newport Bermuda Race, are typically windward-leeward courses off Newport, RI. In even years, the Annual Regatta is a great tune-up opportunity for the Newport Bermuda Race.
Event 2: The Newport Bermuda Race – This classic ocean race starts off Castle Hill on Friday, June 17th and concludes 635 Atlantic Ocean miles later off Bermuda’s landmark St David’s Lighthouse.
Event 3: The RBYC Anniversary Regatta – Two races Bermuda on the Friday after the Newport Bermuda Race. In recent years the format has included a windward-leeward race and a beautiful around the buoys race in the Great Sound, Granaway Deep, Port Royal Bay, and finishing near the Fairmont Hamilton Princess Hotel and the docks of the RBYC in Hamilton Harbour. The RBYC Anniversary Regatta is open to all qualified yachts in Bermuda not just yachts entered in the complete series.
A Tough Triathlon of Offshore Racing. The Onion Patch is a tough series to win as an individual entry,” said Rives Potts owner of Carina. “You have to be very good in all conditions and on all types of race courses. Not many boats or crews excel at both. The guys that do well in the Onion Patch Series have a lot to be proud of. They prepare their boats right, are able to shift gears from long-legged races to short-legged races, and have very good sailors on board.”“To win as a team is even more difficult,” Potts added. “All three boats on the team have to do very well in all three phases of the series. The winning team is usually the team who makes the fewest mistakes and is consistent throughout.
Who Sails in the Onion Patch?
All yachts sailing in the St. David’s Lighthouse or Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Divisions of the Newport Bermuda Race and that also sail in the New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta and the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Anniversary Regatta may enter and compete for Onion Patch Series awards.
Yachts in the series range in size from the smallest to the largest yachts who are in the St David’s or Gibb’s Hill Division of the Newport Bermuda Race. Crews include family Corinthian crews competing against some of the best professionals in offshore sailing.
Interestingly, the more amateur crews in the smaller yachts have fared well in the past. This reflects the fact that the series is a combination of ocean racing, windward-leeward, and point-to-point around the buoys day racing, a structure that tends to level the playing field.
Teams and Individual Yachts
All yachts entered in the Onion Patch Series compete as individual entries with the overall winner capturing the prestigious DuPont Trophy. Approximately half the fleet not only competes for individual honors but also as three boat teams representing a country, a yacht club or another sailing organization– with club teams from many countries having been winners in past years.
More details at www.onionpatchseries.com