Regattas in Puerto Rico

Sailing in Puerto Rico

Sailing in Puerto Rico is pretty close to sailing in paradise. The trade winds that blow east to west are constant and the water is warm. These ideal conditions attract many competitors to the different regattas in Puerto Rico that are held all around the island. Two of the biggest small boat events of the year will be held in San Juan Bay in May and July. 

Pan Pepín International Regatta

The first event is the Pan Pepín International Dinghy Regatta from May 24th to the 27th. This event features many of the most popular boats in the world such as Sunfish, Optimists and ILCA’s. Racing will be held in the Atlantic just east of the entrance to the bay. The best place to watch the regatta is from the grounds of El Morro. It can also be seen from Norzagaray Street with a cold beer at La Vergüenza restaurant.

Sailing in Puerto Rico
Optimists lined up for the start in Puerto Rico


The Optimist North American Championships

The largest of the regattas in Puerto Rico will be held July 13-20th right outside of El Morro in the waters of the Atlantic. The Optimist North American Championships will feature 180 competitors. They come from as far away as New Zealand, Hong Kong and Great Britain. This an interesting class of sailboat because all competitors are between 8 and 15 years old. It’s one of the few individual sports where boys and girls compete equally. 

Optimist Puerto Rico
Optimist Sailing near La Perla community, north of Old San Juan

This boat is the biggest youth racing class in the world. Some regattas host a 1,000 sailors at a time. Most of the Olympic champions sailed Optis in their youth. Once they “age out” they move on to boats that compete in the Summer Games and other World Championships. 

So if you see a lot of small white sails playing in the waves in San Juan this summer you might be watching a future OIympic medallist in action. 

Optimist Sailing Girl
Optimist Sailing near El Morro

Want to know more? Check out these links for details. 

Pan Pepín Regatta:

Optimist North American Championship

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