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2010 marks 10th Performance Race Week with North U. and Offshore Sailing School

By Staff | Oct 6, 2009

Offshore Sailing School’s chairman, Steve Colgate, and North U. director, Bill Gladstone, announced on Friday a new venue and 2010 dates for their popular Performance Race Week training program.

“We are celebrating a 10-year collaboration that puts racing sailors in the winner’s circle,” says Colgate. “This serious yet fun week produces stunning results back home.”

Offshore/North U. Performance Race Weeks started 10 years ago at South Seas Island Resort on Captiva Island, home of Offshore Sailing School’s premier year-round location for 34 years (except for a three-year hiatus when the resort was rebuilt after Hurricane Charley).

Returning to Captiva, the 2010 week is scheduled for April 18-25.

Gladstone, who spearheads Performance Race Week, created the North U. curriculum and textbooks and conducts racing seminars all over the country. During Performance Race Week, crews of four learn and race mornings and afternoons with an Offshore Sailing School coach on each of the school’s award-winning Colgate 26s.

“No other program offers so much racing, coaches with decades of teaching experience right on each boat, video reviews combined with our North U. curriculum, in such an incomparable setting,” said Gladstone.

Shawna Gauthier of Marblehead, Mass. attended a Performance Race Week with Bill Gladstone and wrote, “I was not comfortable taking the helm during a race until I attended this camp. I have since become quite confident in my driving skills and feel very competitive with the rest of the fleet (hence third place finish in the Marblehead NOODS!)”

Another participant, John Breyfogle of Countersville, Ala., said, “This has been a great learning experience and it delivers. With the same skipper (back home) we never finished better than fourth; yesterday we got a second and two firsts!”

The program starts Sunday evening, April 18, with an orientation gathering of all participants and the teaching staff, followed by a welcome party. Throughout the week, crews of four are coached by expert instructors on each boat in morning and afternoon sessions, with midday seminar breaks and evening video recaps.

On Regatta Day Saturday, crews race without coaches, culminating with silver awards to winning teams at a gala dinner that evening.

Non-racing family and friends are encouraged to accompany participants.

“This is one of the best vacation areas in the country, with so much for them to do at the resort and surrounding areas,” said Colgate. “Too often our participants tell us after the fact they would have brought their families if they had known how much fun they could have, too!”

For those who have good mid-sized sailboat skills but no racing experience, a three-day Performance Sailing course brings participants up to speed Friday through Sunday, April 16-18.

Offshore Sailing School also conducts its Learn to Sail, Bareboat Cruising Preparation and Performance Sailing courses during the same week, available to family and friends who want to learn but not race. The schedule for these courses is in half-day sessions, providing free time to enjoy all the other activities available for vacationers.

“During Performance Race Week you learn more, have more fun, and go home a much better racer on a rewarding vacation that can’t be beat,” added Gladstone.

“Awesome week! is the mantra heard over and over,” coaches report.

To celebrate the program’s 10th year, a special Yacht Club trophy is awarded, and recognition in prizes and discounts are available to returning participants.

“You don’t have to put a crew together,” said Colgate. “For singles and couples, we put teams together.”

For more information on Performance Race Week and courses ranging from Learn To Sail to Offshore Passage Making, call 800-221-4326 or e-mail sail@offshoresailing.com.