Marion-Bermuda race symposium March 19

Marion-Bermuda race symposium March 19

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The Marion to Bermuda Cruising Yacht Race committee has selected John Rousmaniere as the moderator of the U.S. Sailing-sanctioned Safety at Sea Symposium on Saturday, March 19-20, at Kresge Auditorium on the MIT Campus, in Cambridge.

The symposium is open to all sailors interested in offshore preparation and safety, though topics will be geared to those racing June, 2011, in the Marion-Bermuda race, and in the Marblehead-Halifax race.

Since it began in 1977, the Marion-Bermuda race has been a Corinthian event — that is, a race for amateur yachtsmen who sail their own yachts without a professional skipper. Yachts are accepted by invitation. The spirit of the race is that all yachts and crew are participating for the joy and pleasure of sailing, competition, and the camaraderie that accompanies such an offshore event.

Mr. Rousmaniere has sailed more than 40,000 miles, including nine Newport-Bermuda races, two Fastnet races, three trans-Atlantic races or cruises, other long races or cruises, and extensive day racing. His sailing experience and his writing about the 1979 Fastnet storm led him to speak at or moderate more than 100 safety at sea seamanship, or Suddenly Alone seminars, under the aegis of the U.S. Sailing Association and North U (the educational arm of North Sails).

The ISAF has recently updated rulings regarding Safety at Sea seminar attendance requirements. Thirty percent of crew, including the skipper, must have completed a Safety at Sea symposium within the past five years (no longer within three years).

As during the 2009 Safety at Sea weekend, the Marion-Bermuda Race committee expects to include a second (optional) day on Sunday, March 20, covering in-depth weather and medical education modules, and in-water safety procedures. Symposium Registration will open by early January 2011 on www.marionbermuda.com.

Registration for the June 17, 2011 Marion Bermuda Race opened on September 1, 2010 with 27 boats currently registered. Visit the updated race website www.marionbermuda.com to download the notice of race, inspection checklists, find a mentor, read about past and new race participants, and learn about upcoming safety and weather seminars. Join the conversation on the race discussion forum: http://racetobermuda.ning.com.