Long Beach Yacht Club Builds on a Legacy

In 1992, the Women’s One Design Challenge was created in a collaboration between the Long Beach and Los Angeles Women’s Sailing Associations. It became the premier women’s competition on the West Coast, hosted by Long Beach Yacht Club (LBYC) and sailed on Catalina 37s under what was described as “quite boisterous conditions!” That first challenge was won by LBYC Skipper Linda Elias, who went on to win it two more times. In 1997, Linda and a group of accomplished female racers, including LBYC’s own PSSC Camille Daniels, chartered a Santa Cruz 50 named Bay Wolf and raced the Transpac.

In 2003 the Women’s One Design Challenge was re-dedicated to the memory of Linda Elias, who passed away that year following a nine-year battle with ovarian cancer. Linda was one of Southern California’s most successful female sailors, and along with other extraordinary women in racing established a legacy that continues today, 30 years later.

Linda’s success helped launch the LBYCSF charter program and attracted sailors to compete in a pure one-design class. On the 30th anniversary of the challenge, teams from LBYC and the Long Beach Sailing Foundation (LBSF) faced off. On the LBYC team, Wendy Corzine included three juniors, 15-year-old Jessica of the SATO Sailing team, 14-year-old Sophia of the LBYC & Mater Dei Sailing Team, and 12-year-old Olivia of the LBYC Sailing team! On the LBSF team, along with veterans Lisa Meier, Blair Carty, Cheri Busch, Janice Eagle and Carling Freeborn Cain, newcomers Brenda Sheridan and Caroline LaBauve trained up and joined the team! The Perpetual Trophy lives in our trophy case and the racing women of LBYC continue to keep the legacy alive.

For the “Linda Challenge” and other LBYC regattas which embody that same spirit, it’s inspiring to see long-time and newer members coming together to build a strong club for members of all ages. LBYC will continue to build on this legacy!