Bay Race October 2-6, 2024

Please read this page and then

Email:  Race Contact   |   Contact in Baltimore  |  Contact in Norfolk


Register your vessel to participate in this year’s race.

  • In order to have your vessel name printed on your race shirts, you must register by August 1st and order a minimum of 4 shirts. Race shirts identify your crew members and admit them to all festivities.
  • There is no registration deadline, so you may register right up to the beginning of the race, but docking is limited and will be determined on a first-paid, first-entered basis. Only complete entries will be considered. A waiting list will be maintained once the limit is reached. We will contact wait-listed vessels.
  • N-Class vessels should register as early as possible. Registration applications will be reviewed by GCBSR and vessels will be notified of their status by August 18th. If invited to participate in this year’s race, N-Class vessels should continue to follow the instructions for all participating vessels.
  • 2024 registration fees are $3.00/ft ($2.50 by August 1), $25 per race shirts (required for everyone aboard as well as anyone joining in for the land-based events), and vessels carrying passengers pay an additional $10/passenger.
  • If you have family or friends who will be joining us for the party on either end of the race, separate party tickets can be purchased for them.
  • If your plans change after registration, please contact


Submit your race payment. The registration process should take you directly to the payment system, but this link will let you go back and buy additional shirts, etc. Your entry fee is not refundable and you are not completely registered until you have paid in full. If you have any questions, please contact


Draft Race Handbook (PDF) All the rules, instructions and information for race captains and crew, including schedule, racing rules and instructions, and more. (Note: This is a draft handbook subject to change.)

2023 Fleet Book (PDF) a photobook of last year’s participating vessels. (this will be updated when the 2024 book is complete)

A Full Crew List Form (Jotform) must be completed with an entry for each person on a vessel. If not filled out online, a hand copy must be turned in to Duncan Hood before the Skippers’ Meeting starts on Thursday morning.

The Safety Statement & Waiver (PDF) must be signed and turned in prior to participating in race events. Please send or hand the completed form to Duncan Hood before or at the Captains’ Meeting on Wednesday morning.

Race Log (PDF) The captain of each schooner must ensure that the time when the vessel passed through each of the race “gates” is logged (hh:mm:ss). A paper log is located at the end of the Race Handbook for your convenience, or you may use any other paper record that has the appropriate information.

Chantey Songbook (PDF) There is a chantey sing on Saturday evening. Download the pdf and get your crew keyed up to participate!

In Baltimore

  • Please fuel your vessel and pump your holding tank before docking. The morning of the race you really will not have time to do this.
  • We encourage you to take a turn around the Inner Harbor under sail before you tie up to promote the race to the public.
  • All participating schooners will be assigned a berth in Baltimore. We will send captains all of the docking information by email in advance of race week.
  • We will help you arrange transportation, provisioning, ice, etc.
  • Early arrivals are welcome and can receive free docking beginning on Tuesday. Hail “Schooner Race Dockmaster” on VHF 16 as you enter the harbor. You will likely then be asked to switch to VHF 68.
  • For information about mail, packages and faxes in Baltimore, contact

In Norfolk

  • Expect to arrive in Norfolk between Friday morning and Saturday morning, depending on the weather and your speed. Make sure your family knows how to communicate with the race organizers in event of personal emergencies.
  • For information about mail, packages and faxes in Norfolk, contact

Schedule at a Glance

See Participants’ Events for additional details about these events.

Tuesday, October 1, 2024

  • 1000-1400 Open Docks
  • 1700-1900 Open Docks

Wednesday, October 2, 2024

  • 1000-1400 Open Docks
  • 1200 All schooners must be docked in Baltimore
  • 1400 Mandatory Captains’ Meeting
  • 1600 Push off, for Parade of Sail at 1700
  • 1900 All Hands Party (outdoors on the Marina dock like last year)

Thursday, October 3, 2024

  • 0630 Mandatory Skippers’ Meeting – Schooners not represented at this mandatory meetings will be disqualified. Captains unable to attend must arrange official representation and notify the race committee.
  • 0730 Cast-off for the Start
  • 1200 Beginning of the Race Start Sequence

Friday, October 4, 2024

Saturday, October 5, 2024

  • 0800-1800 Open Docks
  • 1200 Deadline for calling in finish time
  • 1300-1700 Pig and Oyster Roast / Awards Ceremony
  • 1700-2100 Schooner Social -We all like meeting other classic boat sailors and seeing each other’s boats. Captains and crew are encouraged to host those from other vessels and show them all the neat things that you love about your boat. All are encouraged to knock on the hull of a vessel you would like to get to know and wait to be asked aboard.
  • 2000-2300 Sailors’ Evening and Sea Chantey Sing-along – The Norfolk Boat Club is hosting a Sea Chantey Sing and we are all invited to come and lend our voices! Chanteys are about having fun, not perfect pitch, so come join in the festivities.  Songbooks provided. Location is just 2 ½  blocks from Freemason harbor, 432 W Freemason St.

Sunday, October 6, 2024

  • 0730-0900 Captain’s Meeting
  • 0900-1100 All Hands Breakfast

Monday, October 7, 2024

  • 0900-1600 Tentative Educational sails / dockside

Safety Statement

This is meant to be a fun race; however, the safety of a vessel and her crew is the sole and inescapable responsibility of the captain, who must ensure that the vessel is sound, seaworthy, and manned by experienced crew who are physically fit. The captain must further ensure that all equipment is properly maintained and stowed, and that the crew knows its location and proper usage. It is recommended that all vessels have GPS, chartplotter, AIS, radar, EPIRB, life raft and any other equipment needed to maintain situational awareness and effect rescue in the event it is needed. It is also the sole and exclusive responsibility of the captain to decide whether or not to start or continue in the race. Vessels will be disqualified for unsafe operation or failure to have formal representation at the skipper’s meeting Thursday morning pre-race. The race involves sailing at night in an area busy with commercial traffic. All participating vessels must fly radar reflectors, maintain a radio watch, and keep a good lookout at all times. Captains unfamiliar with night sailing on the Chesapeake are encouraged to seek local knowledge and experienced crew before entering the event.