Ladies' Cup Regatta at Rhode Island Yacht Club
Updated: Jun 21
Every year in June, the Rhode Island Yacht Club (RIYC) organizes the Lady’s cup Regatta. This year the Ladies' cup will take place on Saturday, June 24, 2023 in the upper Narragansett Bay. 2023 marks the 16th running of the Ladies's Cup Regatta. The race goal is to celebrate the competitive spirit of women sailors on Narragansett Bay and has been awarded intermittently since its inception in 1898.
Ladies' Cup regatta main requirements
In order to qualify for race, a female must be Skipper of the boat and crew must have 50% female participants.
For purposes of awarding the Ladies’ Cup and in the spirit of the event, boats with a 100% female crew shall be provided with a 10 seconds/mile PHRF rating credit. The race is open to every boat, members and non-members of the Rhode Island Yacht club.
The regatta is non-spinnaker race. Only a single headsail, fully hanked to the headstay is allowed, except during the rapid change of headsails.
Scoring shall be on a Time on Distance method adjusted for Narragansett Bay PHRF. Each participant must have a valid 2023 PHRF certificate. This scoring allows boats of different size to compete in the same class.
Trophy’s and awards
Trophies will be presented to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place boats.
The Ladies’ Cup perpetual trophy will be engraved with the top finisher based on corrected time.
The RIYC Ladies' cup: a long Rhode Island tradition
The Ladies Cup Regatta was originally run in 1898 as "Ladies Day Race". 2023 marks the 16th running of the Ladies Cup Regatta. RIYC renewed it in 2005 with the help of several RIYC female members, led by Susan Quackenbush.
Under her leadership, the Bay-wide Ladies Day Regatta, was reborn as the Ladies Cup Regatta and marked the return of an event whose origins went back more than one hundred years. The original cups of the winners in the races of 1898 and 1906 were put back in circulation for this regatta.
How to join the Ladies' Cup and what to expect?
The lady’s cup is always a fun and very well attended event with a lot of boats joining in a friendly competitive spirit. A casual awards banquet and cook-out style meal will be hosted following the race. A great time to meet fellow participants and friends.
All visiting race boats are eligible for mooring and launch services June 23rd through the 25th. The RI Yacht Club has a full service restaurant and bar along with shower and bathroom facilities. It is ideal to spend a weekend or more time near the Pawtuxet village.
Registration and official websites:
Rhode Island Yacht Club (RIYC) short history
The RIYC is one of the oldest yacht clubs in America. It was founded and chartered as the Providence Yacht Club in 1875 and incorporated as such in 1877 by a group of prominent Rhode Island businessmen and boating enthusiasts. The club organized races and events since it inception. We can list the following main milestones:
1914: Henry Ford donate a sterling pitcher in honor that was presented to the winner
1921: the yacht America, the winner of the Queen’s Cup (today known as the America Cup) dropped her anchor at the club for a while on her way from Boston to Annapolis.
1938: The club and the Narragansett bay were devastated. The Clubhouse was completely destroyed by a 30-foot tidal surge.
1940: the clubhouse is rebuilt on Big Rock on wooden foundation
1954: another big storm, hurricane Carol demolished all but the pilings of what was the short-lived, second club house on Big Rock.
1956: A highly motivated group of members managed to rebuild the club
1978: A new 486 feet stone breakwater was built for the protection of the new docks
1985: Another hurricane hit Rhode Island and inflicted only minor damages to the docks and other structures
1992: the first woman commodore was elected, Francine A. Ledo and she was re-elected for a second term a year later
1995: the Lady’s cup regatta was reborn on July 16.
2007: The club established the RIYC Gaspee Regatta as an annual event
2015: Facilities were restored and maintenance dredge of the marina removing 12 years of storm and nature was completed
Find a Crew or Find a Boat for the Lady’s Cup
Coboaters , the Coboating club of North America allows boat owners to publish ads to look for crew and for crew to contact those boat owners. Everything is free for Ladies' cup participants.
Together crew and skippers can decide if they want to sail together. There are a lot of boats in Narragansett Bay that could join the race if they had more crew and especially female crew. Coboaters help in connecting boat owners with crew all over North America.