What is described as the first-ever powerboat rally from San Diego to La Paz, Mexico is being planned by Del Rey Yacht Club (DRYC), tentatively scheduled for departure Wednesday, November 7th.
The rally will provide support to powerboaters who wish to experience the thrill of long-distance cruising, say DRYC members Bruce Kessler and Peter Patman, who are instrumental in the development of the rally.
Kessler is chair of the event and Patman worked closely with Mexico’s Department of Tourism — a full partner with the DRYC on this project — and he is the contact for potential sponsors of the race.
Any profits from this event will benefit the DRYC juniors in Marina del Rey through the Santa Monica Bay Sailing Foundation, said Kessler.
The proposed event, designated the “FUBAR Odyssey,” or Fleet Underway Baja Rally, is designed to include a specified fleet of powerboats and their owners, individuals who are novices to boating, say Kessler and Patman.
The event is intended to provide a supportive environment for new powerboat owners to learn about their boats, how to operate them efficiently, and socialize in the boating community traveling in a fleet from San Diego to La Paz.
This DRYC event is open to members of other yacht clubs or any boat owner who is interested in participating.
The basic requirements are for a powerboat to be able to travel 450 nautical miles at eight knots.
An entry fee amount will be announced once the organizers are ready to accept entries, and there will be a three-month evaluation period to determine entrant participation.
Del Rey Yacht Club members plan to rendezvous in Catalina, and then proceed to San Diego to meet up with other event participants.
The event is designed for powerboaters who wish to stay on and continue cruising in Mexico, but for those intending to return at the end of the season (May), information about return options will be provided, according to Kessler and Patman.
The fleet of powerboats would be escorted by vessels staffed by experienced skippers, and with key support people aboard such as mechanics, doctors, boat manufacturers, and makers of major marine engines, electronics and equipment, according to the powerboat rally’s Web site.
Approximately 16 days would be required for the trip, with an additional two days planned for potential weather variations.
The trip schedule is planned to be flexible to “accommodate days spent in port waiting for fair weather, fueling facilities and dockage for shore-side activities and parties that will be pre-arranged along the way where such facilities exist,” according to the FUBAR Web site.
Patman, a DRYC staff commodore, is an avid powerboater and active participant in the SCYA (Southern California Yachting Association).
Patman describes himself as a “novice” in boating, saying he has “only been involved with boating for 12 years.”
Patman was president of the Southern California Golf Association (SCGA) in 1986.
Questions from sponsors should be directed to Patman at
Kessler has circumnavigated the world in his 1970 Delta trawler Zopilote, and is a veteran Baja traveler.
Auto racing fans might remember that Kessler was a team driver along with Chuck Daigh for the Scarab race cars built by his friend Lance Reventlow in the late 1950s.
Kessler also competed in Europe in 1957 and drove for Ferrari in 1958 with Dan Gurney as his co-driver at Le Mans.
Kessler was also a film and television director and a world-class skeet and trap shooter.
Information, www.fubarodyssey.com or e-mail questions to firstname.lastname@example.org