Monday, July 13, 2009

Mileage counter

What is going on at the Great Lakes? This weekend on Lake Michigan, 350 boats will start the 101st Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac, the 333 statute mile event that calls itself the “The world’s longest annual freshwater distance race.” However, also this weekend, over to the east there will be 170 boats starting the 20th running of the Lake Ontario 300 (nautical mile), which similarly labels itself as “the longest annually held fresh water sailing race in the world.”

To their credit, both races are sold out, but is now a good time to mention how 1 statute mile equals .86897624 nautical miles?

The scoop on the Lake Ontario 300 is that they have sponsorship from Bell BlackBerry, and have grown by more than 40% over last year, attracting competitors from over thirty different yacht clubs from both sides of the border. The course is a circumnavigation of the lake that starts at Port Credit Yacht Club (Mississauga, ONT), heads east and rounds Main Duck Island, then heads south to Oswego NY where it turns east along the south shore to the Niagara River mark before heading to the finish line at Port Credit Yacht Club.

Regarding what race this year is the actual longest, freshwater race (though not annually held), the gauntlet has been thrown down with the return of the "Super Mac". Last run in 2000, this 564 statute mile race (or 490 nautical miles) starts with the Chi-Mac but rather than stopping at the top of Michigan after their finish, the 31 current entrants will continue on around the corner and head south in Lake Huron to the finish in Port Huron, Michigan, and serve as a feeder race for the 85th sailing of the 2009 Pure Michigan Bayview Mackinac Race, which will start on July 25, 2009.

Chicago YC Race to Mackinac:
Lake Ontario 300:
Pure Michigan Bayview Mackinac Race:
Mileage convertor:

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At 9:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is why they always cover the other races by calling them "longest annual race".

Sail a Real Lake.

August 8th, 2009.

At 6:18 AM, Blogger Scuttleblog said...

Wow... we have a new winner! The 2009 Trans Superior International Yacht Race starts August 8th and is 338 Nautical Miles. This is the LONGEST freshwater race (so far). Any others?

At 6:42 AM, Blogger Scuttleblog said...

But is the Trans Superior International Yacht Race only held in odd years... making it the longest, NOT ANNUAL, freshwater race?

At 7:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The ANNUAL excuse is lame, and little more than ego puffing at the expense of other races.

Perhaps we should refer to the Trans-Superior as the ONLY International Offshore Race of The Great Lakes and ignore the others.

Honestly, each race is the best at something and they should all be recognized as such.

Michgan - Biggest
Huron - Funnest
Super Mac - Longest
Erie - You tell me.
Superior - Toughest (39 degree water and wind on the nose, thank you)


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