Winter Meeting Re-cap

Despite Mother Nature’s attempt to keep the number to a minimum of those attending the 2017 GYA Winter Meeting we had great attendance. Every committee meeting was full (some had to bring in extra chairs), roughly 100 attendees at the Awards Banquet and 18 clubs represented at the Board of Directors meeting.

The 2017 GYA Bridge: Michael Hage (GYC), Commodore; Chris Luppens (MYC), Vice Commodore; Shan Kirk (SYC/PontYC), Rear Commodore; Cathy Cromartie (FYC), Past Commodore; Jennifer Schmidt (SYC/MYC), Secretary/Treasurer.

The ExCom met on Friday evening. During that meeting it was decided to close the GYA savings account and move that money to our investment accounts. The ExCom feels there is little to no benefit to have funds sitting in an account that draws so little interest. It was also decided that at the end of each year any funds in the checking account in excess of $5,000 will be moved to the investment accounts. The primary goal of the investment accounts is the self-insurance of GYA perpetual trophies.

The GYA ExCom and the Safety Advisory Committee encourages all GYA Clubs, Jr. Programs and individuals to purchase a subscription to the Storm Trysail Foundation Safety At Sea videos. The SaS videos, narrated by Storm Trysail Club member Gary Jobson, vary in length from 3 minutes to 27 minutes and cover subjects from Man Overboard Recovery, safety equipment, understanding weather and more. For a one-time fee of $40 you receive lifetime access to the full library to view over and over. More information here.

Full Committee reports will be published with the minutes, but some items of note that came from the various Committee meetings:

The Fish Class Curren Perpetual Trophy will permanently reside at Buccaneer YC. Due to the trophy’s age and fragility, it will not travel. A suitable keep award is being considered to award to the winner of the trophy.

The One-Design Council will have “Demo Days” in 2017 at various regattas, with the goal being to expose sailors to new and existing boats and classes they may not otherwise have the opportunity to experience. The first demo day will be in conjunction with the Opening Regatta at Gulfport YC on May 6-7.

The Offshore Council reported that regulations for the GYC PHRF Circuit are almost complete and will include regattas along the Gulf Coast to determine the GYA PHRF Boat of the Year. Navy YC will host the GYA PHRF Women’s Championship in 2017. The 2017 Challenge Cup will include a steeplechase/fixed mark race to be sailed after a windward/leeward race on either Friday or Saturday. Be on the look-out for some updated Offshore Regulations and By-Laws which will be noticed and voted on at the Opening Regatta Board of Directors meeting. Good response from safety measures implemented in 2016.

The Appeals Committee had three appeals in 2017; one was resolved and two have been appealed to US Sailing. It is anticipated that a decision on the US Sailing appeals will come in January or February 2017.

Bernard Moseby was selected as the President of the GYA Foundation Board. The Foundation considered three requests from sailors for financial assistance and made disbursements totaling $2338. A fourth request was incomplete but will be considered once proper documentation is received.

The Judges Committee reported there is still a need for more certified Race Officials and Judges in the GYA.

Capdevielle: Until there is a ruling on one of the appeals with US Sailing, the 2016 Overall Capdevielle Winner cannot be awarded. Biloxi YC won the Mississippi Challenger Division. No club in Alabama or Louisiana met all of the requirements for Challenger Division, and the Florida winner will be determined once a ruling is handed down on the aforementioned appeal. Modifications to the Regulations for the Challenger Division are being considered.  At the Viper 640 Annual General Meeting the GYA sail numbering was approved, which allows for GYA sailing numbering to be recognized at sanctioned Viper events. Other Viper 640 class rule changes were discussed. Buccaneer YC was the winner of the 2016 Sportboat Championship, with Gulfport YC 2nd and St. Andrews Bay YC 3rd. Eight regattas in 2017 will be included in the Sportboat Championship: Mardi Gras, Opening, Candler, Meigs, Summer, Weatherly, Wadewitz and Sugar Bowl. See the GYA Sailing Schedule for full details and dates.

Elizabeth McGriff (Fairhope YC) was appointed Chair of the Youth Committee. At the Opening Regatta there will be a trial format for a youth event to be comprised of 3 fleets – singled-handed to be sailed in the Laser Radial, doublehanded in the 420 with trap/spin and triplehanded in the Flying Scot. Team scores in the 3 fleets will be combined to determine overall winner. High performance clinics will be held throughout the year at various clubs with high level coaches brought in. Fairhope YC will host the Area D Championship June 9-11, a qualifier for the US Sailing Youth Championship.

The 2017 Schedule is on-line at  Clubs are strongly encouraged to use the link sent to them to post NoRs and results. If any club needs their link resent, contact Randy Fitz-Wainwright.

As you can see, it was a very productive weekend and there is a lot of momentum in the GYA, from youth events to big boat sailing and everything in between.


The Safety at Sea videos, produced by the Storm Trysail Foundation and narrated by Storm Trysail Club member Gary Jobson, vary in length and cover subjects from Man Overboard Recovery, safety equipment, understanding weather and more.

For a one-time fee of $40 US, you receive lifetime access to the full library to view over and over. You and your shipmates will be better prepared in the case of an emergency whether you’re racing or cruising, in coastal waters or off shore, under sail or power. And, as Storm Trysail adds more videos to its library, you will have access to the full collection.

The GYA ExCom and the Safety Advisory Committee encourages all GYA Clubs, Jr. Programs and individuals to purchase a subscription to the STF Safety At Sea videos. The videos are not intended to replace a Safety at Sea seminar such as the one being hosted at Pensacola Yacht Club in March. Anyone seeking Off Shore certification would need to attend a seminar. But, we recognize that there are many local/coastal sailors who are not seeking off-shore certification so will most likely never attend a seminar. We also recognize that sailing accidents can happen on a beer can race, a sanctioned event or just out cruising for the day.

The first ten videos cover:
 Practical Man Overboard Recovery (24 mins.)
 Understanding Weather (23 mins.)
 Understanding Offshore Weather (24 mins.)
 Flares and Pyrotechnic Devices (6 mins.)
 Storm Sails (12 mins.)
 Shipboard Firefighting Strategies (4 mins.)
 Fighting Shipboard Fires (7 mins.)
 Personal Safety Equipment (27 mins.)
 Cold water survival & Life Rafts (3 min.)
 Deploying a Life Raft (6 mins.)

$40 is a very small cost to pay if even just one life is saved because you watched the video and know how to recover a man overboard, or if one boat is saved because you know how to properly extinguish a blaze.

Payment may be made through PayPal. The GYA will reimburse any GYA club who purchases a subscription to the library. Simply purchase your subscription and send a copy of your receipt to

Sailors can visit the link below and order their subscription to the Storm Trysail Foundation’s complete Safety-at-Sea Video Library.

GYA Winter Meeting


Sunday, January 8, 2017
Pensacola Yacht Club
1897 West Cypress Street
Pensacola, FL 32502


TO: Commodores of General & Affiliate Members GYA Executive Committee
GYA Past Commodores
GYA Standing Committee & Council Chairmen
GYA Coordinator of each GYA General Member Club GYA Associate Members

The Winter Meeting of the Gulf Yachting Association will be held on January 7 & 8, 2017 at Pensacola Yacht Club (850-433-8804). Since some mailing and email addresses have changed since the last meeting, please distribute this information to the appropriate contacts at your club.

Friday, January 6, 2017
1830 GYA Executive Committee Meeting

Saturday, January 7, 2017
0800-1100 Registration

0830 Committee Meetings start according to schedule
1730 Cocktail Party and GYA Foundation Silent Auction
1900 GYA Annual Awards Banquet

Sunday, January 8, 2017

0800-1000 Committee meetings continue 1030-1230 Board of Directors Meeting

GYA COMMODORES – GENERAL MEMBER CLUBS – Your club’s attendance is very important. If you cannot attend the Board meeting, please send a WRITTEN NOTICE naming your club’s representative to the
GYA Secretary-Treasurer at
5171 Eagle Point Drive
Grand Bay, AL 36541

email the document to, or hand deliver at the meeting.

All GYA Clubs and their members are invited to attend the GYA Annual Awards Banquet to be held on Saturday evening at Pensacola, FL 1900.

A block of 15 rooms is being held at the Grand Hotel in Pensacola (hotel by the Pensacola Civic Center), 200 East Gregory Street, for the nights of Jan. 6 and 7, 2017, at a rate of $119.00 per night. The rooms will be held until December 9. Call 850-433-3336 to make your reservation and use reference code GYA. After December 9 rooms will be subject to availability and will not be at the discounted rate.

Please make dinner reservations no later than December 31st, 2016, by email only please to Scott Segers: The banquet cost will be $27 and includes tax and gratuity.

If you have recently lost a member of your sailing community and would like to have them included in the silent prayer at the Winter meeting, please call or email the pertinent information to me (251-367-2252).

Your GYA Flag Officers look forward to seeing you at the Winter Meetings at Pensacola Yacht Club. Sincerely, Janace Batty GYA Secretary-Treasurer (251)367-2252

A Special Invitation from Sarasota Sailing Squadron to GYA Sailors.

With a large part of the Viper Class getting ready for Bermuda, the Sarasota Viper Fleet is getting fired up to host a fantastic East Coast Winter Series. The Sarasota Viper Fleet will again host a three event series that feeds perfectly into the EFG Pan American Championships in Miami.

As a new member of the GYA Sarasota Sailing Squadron would like to extend a extra special welcome to our fellow GYA member clubs and private teams. THE FIRST THREE NEW GYA AFFILATED TEAMS TO REGESTER FOR THE THREE EVENT SERIES WILL RECEIVE FREE MAST UP STORAGE @ SSS from DEC-MAR! The Sarasota Winter Series is scored per boat so we encourage all clubs and individuals to consider sending your boat for the series and rotating teams out to represent your club and take advantage of the 18-28 fleets that we expect. We are looking forward to seeing you  this winter in Florida!

The Sarasota Viper Fleet

for more info click here…

VIPER 640 – NA Boats Going Fast

Rondar has only 3 boats still available for purchase following the Viper 640 NAs in Bermuda in November. These boats will have been sailed for 5 days, will come with all GYA package accessories and new sails. Add to that $1,000 off the already discounted GYA price. Contact Dan Tucker ( or 781.799.8132) for more details and/or to purchase one of these boats.

Supporting Yachting in the Southeast since 1901