There are few things that delight sailors, and landlubbers, more than catching sight of a historic 12 Metre yacht slicing through the water. Fortunately for anyone who lives in or visits Newport, R.I., this week, a fleet of nine boats will gather in the City by the Sea to contest the 12 Metre North American Championship hosted by Ida Lewis Yacht Club from September 23-25, 2016.

“Spectators can look forward to seeing three boats racing in each of three classes – Grand Prix, Modern and Traditional,” said Peter Gerard, Vice President of the Americas Fleet.  “Beginning on Friday, September 23, seven races will be held either on Narragansett Bay north of the bridge, or on Rhode Island Sound.”

Participating 12 Metres will be docked at Bannister’s Wharf starting onThursday, September 22.  With course signals at 1055 each morning of racing, landlubbers who go to Fort Adams between 0900-1030 will have the best chance of seeing the 12s sailing out to the racecourse.

Competing will be K-Z5 LAURA, KZ-18 Lionheart and K-Z3 NEW ZEALAND in the Grand Prix class; K-22 VICTORY 83, US-26 COURAGEOUS and US-22 INTREPID in the Modern class; and US-16 COLUMBIA, US-17 WEATHERLY and US-21 AMERICAN EAGLE in the Traditional class.

Mark your calendars:  In 2019 the 12 Metre World Championship will be held in Newport, R.I., in June.  Gerard is anticipating that 25 boats – more than half coming from outside North America – will make it a memorable event.

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Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What's Up Newp. He was born and raised in Rhode Island and graduated from Coventry High School. He serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League for Animals. Ryan also is currently the Senior Editor - North America for Mountain News, publisher of OnTheSnow. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).