Yacht Racing at Royal Harwich Yacht Club

Racing is a great excuse to get out on the water. Not only is it a brilliant way to get all your crew practicing some key skills, it is a good way to become involved with the sailing community at the club. The yacht racing at RHYC is about offering an opportunity to all sailors to get out on their yachts to give racing a go and have some fun. It is a friendly and relaxed fleet and always happy to chat over rules or tactics at the end of a race. There are often two fleets: Spinnakers and white sails and a mix of racing in the river and out in Dovercourt Bay. 

If you have questions about any of these events contact Liz Neville, RHYC Yacht Racing Class Captain.

Yacht Events 2024

If you have questions about any of these events contact Liz Neville, RHYC Yacht Racing Class Captain.

RHYC Events Here is a summary of the events planned for 2024.  Please see the Club Diary for dates and times.

TUNING FORK – April.  OPEN EVENT – Free. Please see April’s report here

The warmup for the season! Boats are back in the water and this event is a good focus to make sure everything is back in place and in working order. One race this year, starting at the Measured Mile lasting no more than 3 hours and finishing back on the club line. Prize giving back at the club afterwards.

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN. May, June, July, August and September. Read the latest report for June here

The Catch Me If You Can event has continued to be hugely popular with often over 20 boats entered.  Yachts start at different times depending on handicap and the aim is to chase the boats in front (and avoid being caught by the boats behind) as you sail a course around the Orwell and possibly the Stour cans before the 3 hour time limit is up. At that point boats make a note of their location and this determines the placings. Everyone meets back at the bar afterwards and final positions are worked out. Great fun and a ‘Quiz and Curry’ evening and a ‘King’s Cocktails and BBQ’ event have been arranged to coincide with the first two CMIYC of the season.

 Handicaps will be tweaked from one race to the next with the aim of getting as many boats finishing at the club line around the same time! Over time this will create a club handicap for boats racing in this event. 

Club Regatta in August: OPEN EVENT.  This is a great opportunity to come and sail at the club in either or both a Catch Me If You Can or a yacht race – one on either day.

Sunk and Bell races in October: End of season finale. Perhaps the last jaunt before putting your boat to bed for the winter. Weather permitting, these races usually see the fleets heading out into the Dovercourt Bay for a 3-4 hour race. Depending on demand, the Bell Race may be a pursuit style race.

Laying up supper and prizegiving Saturday 26th October Come and relive the fun of the season in the warm and dry and perhaps collect the odd glass trophy!

Other racing on the river:

Haven Combined Clubs This racing is organised jointly by various clubs on the river including the RHYC and aims to appeal to a wide range of sailors. There are two classes : relaxed and experienced. All are welcomed regardless of experience and if you just fancy giving it a try, your first race is complimentary!

 A committee with representatives from each club oversees a points series of eight races as well as an off-shore series of four races. Each club takes responsibility for running a couple of the races.  There is a relaxed fleet and an experienced fleet with separate starts.

The races in the points series typically last about 3-4 hours and are based around the Dovercourt Bay and in the river Orwell and Stour. They are on Saturdays spread over the season.

The offshore races in 2024 will go to Lowestoft, Burnham, Ostend and one round trip race out to Roughs Towers and Cork Sands. Please note that the Ostend race is classed as category 3 race which means all yachts competing will need an AIS transponder and to have had a keel inspection carried out by a surveyor whilst the yacht is in slings.

 For detailed information go to the Haven Combined Clubs website or speak to Liz Neville , RHYC Haven CC representative.


If you fancy some longer races check out the East Anglian Offshore Racing Association