California Maritime Academy looks to defend Harbor Cup trophy

Port of Los Angeles' invitational regatta brings intercollegiate sailing to L.A. Yacht Club.

SAN PEDRO — Three days of intercollegiate sailing returns to Los Angeles Yacht Club as the Port of Los Angeles hosts the 2018 Harbor Cup here in San Pedro, March 9-11. California Maritime Academy, the regatta’s host school, took first place honors in the 2017 iteration of the regatta and looks to defend its title this year.

The Harbor Cup is only open to invited schools; last year’s regatta featured 10 schools competing against each other – Cal Maritime, South Florida, College of Charleston, U.S. Coast Guard Academy, Maine Maritime Academy, USC, University of Santa Barbara, U.S. Naval Academy, Oregon State and a team from Ireland.

South Florida finished last year’s race in second place, followed by Charleston, U.S. Coast Guard Academy and Maine Maritime.

All teams compete on the water in Catalina 37s; fans will be able to observe the regatta from provided spectator boats. Each team must comprise of eight crewmembers.

First race begins at 1:30 p.m., March 9; teams will also take to the water starting at 11:30 a.m. on March 10 and 11. The trophy presentation is scheduled after all racing is complete on March 11.

An alumni and parent cocktail party will be held at Los Angeles YC on March 9; the yacht club will also host a dinner and surprise guest speaker on March 10.

Cal Maritime has won six Harbor Cups, including five in a row between 2011 and 2015. Charleston won the Harbor Cup in 2016, edging out Cal Maritime and U.S. Navy.

USC won the cup in 2010; the Trojans finished second in 2009, 2012 and 2014. Maine Maritime won the first two Harbor Cups in 2008 and 2008.

The Port of Los Angeles, Cal Maritime and Los Angeles YC founded the Harbor Cup in 2008. Housing, meals, hosting, visiting team events and other operational elements of the regatta is provided by Los Angeles YC.

Requiring all competitors to race in Catalina 37s, according to organizers, provides an equal playing field but also challenges the skills and strategies of each team. Racing in Catalina 37s also allows the teams to race in unprotected waters.

Contact Willie Bell, the race chair for Los Angeles YC, at or Jaimie Bartlett at Cal Maritime ( for more information on the Harbor Cup.

Photo credit: Bronny Daniels

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