Opera House Cup News
OHC Announces new division and awards for 2020
October 29, 2019
For Immediate Release
Opera House Cup Committee
c/o Nantucket Community Sailing
October, 2019, Nantucket, Mass. — The Nantucket Opera House Cup, the oldest and most prestigious wooden boat race on the East Coast, has announced it will have a new Division and new awards for the 2020 race. The Commodores Cup is a new award that will be given to the boat with the best overall performance in the combined Nantucket Regatta and the Opera House Cup. The Nantucket Regatta is a two day PHRF and CRF event sailed on Friday and Saturday, and the Opera House Cup is a CRF race sailed on Sunday, the third weekend in August.
The new Invitational Division #3 is for larger historic craft and replicas built of historic materials (steel and wood), and craft built of wood but unqualified to race in Division #1- Ocean-going Cruising or Division #2 - Day Racing. (Some of those considerations are: low displacement-length ratios, high ballast ratios, extreme fins, lack of historic design or lack of build to a recognized design rule). There will be two new awards for this Division: Best Historic Award (craft or replica), and Best Performance in the Invitational Division.
"In point of fact, the Opera House Cup has informally had this Invitational Division for over 40 years" said Buzz Goodall, member of the OHC Committee. "We've always tried to be inclusive and even though our Mission is to celebrate old wooden ocean-going cruisers and day racers, we have allowed steel hulled J-boats, historic fishing schooners, replica tall ships and the occasional modern wooden boat to participate. It all adds to the spectacle of the race, and the fans of the race love to see all these boats."
The Opera House Cup was started in 1973 by a group of sailors who hung out at Nantucket's favorite watering hole, The Opera House. They loved their old wooden boats for cruising, chartering and living aboard. The adoption of the IOR Racing Rule and introduction of fiberglass left these old boats somewhat abandoned and obsolete in racing circles. The Opera House Cup was started to celebrate these old wooden beauties. These boats had been sailed across oceans of the world by small crews and families on voyages of personal discovery. Over time, the OHC's ocean-going cruisers were joined by historic wooden day racing boats. Recognizing that they complement the wooden cruising boat, they were welcomed into the Opera House Cup Day Racing Division.
Although the Opera House Cup takes the form of a race, it seeks not a winner, but rather the spectacle of classic yachts sailing upon our sometimes placid, sometimes wild waters of Nantucket Sound.
For the last 20 years, Nantucket Race Week and Opera House Cup are the key fundraising events to raise money for Nantucket Community Sailing - helping NCS raise over 1/4 of its annual operating budget.
For more information, contact: OHC Committee c/o Nantucket Community Sailing 508-228-6600