Photos: Will Keyworth (smugmug.com)
Doug and Amy Stryker are seeking to become the first owners to complete the Annapolis-Newport Race aboard a J/105. Doug Stryker has entered Mayhem in Block Island Race Week and figured the race would serve as a means of delivering the boat to its destination.
“I’ve got to get the boat to Block Island, so I started wondering what it would take to get this boat ready to do the Annapolis-to-Newport Race,” said Stryker, whose team will also compete in the New York Yacht Club Annual Regatta in Newport and the J/105 North American Championships out of Rye, New York.
Stryker reviewed all the safety requirements for A2N to determine what upgrades would be needed to get Mayhem in compliance. He also evaluated all the onboard equipment to include electronics, hardware, and sail inventory.
“We’ve updated all the electronics on the boat and figured out what additional sails we will need,” said Stryker, who has been humbled by the generosity of fellow J/105 owners wanting to assist the campaign.
Carl Gitchell, the owner of the J/105 Tenacious, is allowing Mayhem to use his life raft, while another owner is lending a required Emergency Position-Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB).
Most importantly, Stryker has lined up a strong crew featuring a pair of veteran offshore racers in Oakcliff Sailing alum Mike Komar and Quantum professional Billy Martin. Jesse McKnight, a regular member of the Mayhem crew, will also be aboard.
“If I didn’t have this group of sailors, there’s no way I would consider doing this race,” Stryker said. “We feel confident we have a good skill set among the crew and are really looking forward to doing this great race.”
For the fifth time, race headquarters will be located at Newport Yachting Center where most boats are berthed. This marina reserves off-season rates for A2N competitors and will begin accepting reservations on February 8. A highlight for competitors after a long, grueling voyage has been the dockside greeting by members of the event’s Hospitality Committee headed by Bob and Cindi Gibson.
“Newport Yachting Center has been a great partner for Annapolis-to-Newport, and we’ve had no problem filling slips,” Praley said.
Organizers are also pleased to announce that the popular Competitors Party, traditionally held at Annapolis Yacht Club(AYC) the Thursday evening prior to the A2N starts, will return after not being held in 2021 due to the pandemic. Each entry will receive two passes to the outbound party being held in the Skipjack with additional passes available for purchase.
AYC will be conducting a series of their popular “What to Expect” seminars designed to prepare participants for the 475-nautical-mile passage. Experts in a wide range of fields such as provisioning, electronics, safety, and navigation will dispense information and advice. Announcements about seminar topics and dates will be forthcoming.
Information on the seminars and all other aspects of the race can be found HERE.