Grosse Pointe Yacht Club Embraces Premiere Sailing League Concept Three Stadium-Style Events and One PSL Event on Club’s Docket for 2017

Grosse Pointe Yacht Club Embraces Premiere Sailing League Concept

Three Stadium-Style Events and One PSL Event on Club’s Docket for 2017

GROSSE POINTE SHORES, MICHIGAN (March 17, 2017) – For this summer, Grosse Pointe Yacht Club in Michigan has organized a series of three stadium-style regattas – scheduled May 20, June 23 and September 16 – and will host the Premiere Sailing League USA’s Freshwater Cup/Great Lakes Challenge, slated for August 12. All four competitions will be sailed in one-design J/70s, with the May 20 event promising “adrenalin-fueled action” at the club’s Great Lakes Boating Festival.


StadiumPremiere Sailing League USA’s Freshwater Cup/Great Lakes Challenge is slated for Grosse Pointe Yacht Club, August 12.

“The May event, like the others, is free, open to the public, and designed to capitalize on fast-paced sailing in close quarters that is thrilling for both competitors and spectators,” said Grosse Pointe Yacht Club Sailing Director Wally Cross, explaining that in a timeframe of four hours, 18 races will be sailed.  Each race will have four legs and last between two and three minutes. Skippers and crews “sail nine, watch nine,” giving them an opportunity to interact with the shore-side crowds. “It’s based on the concept introduced by Premier Sailing League USA and tested with great success last Fall here at this club. Because of the fun factor, word has already spread and people are excited to get involved.”

There are approximately 20 J/70s that regularly sail in the Michigan area, and Cross says the club’s three-race series is open to anyone who owns or can get their hands on a J/70. Points will be cumulative, with the series winner determined at the final event in September. The Premier Sailing League USA event will be separately scored and slightly different. It will be a yacht club challenge open to all clubs on the Great Lakes, and each club (as many as 30 are expected) will be allowed to sail one J/70 in the one-day event. It also guarantees exciting action close to shore, but with as many as 20 short windward/leeward races

“When the action is literally right out in front of the dock, where the dock is part of the course (meaning you tack not to hit it), people standing there really get a feel for it,” said Cross. “The J/70 is the perfect boat; it’s sporty but manageable and really fun to sail.”

According to Premiere Sailing League USA’s Director and Founder Benjamin Klatzka: “The PSL concept, by nature, is a competition between districts and regions in J/70s and then ultimately between national finalists in J/88s.  We are excited that Grosse Pointe Yacht Club has taken the initiative to host its own series to prep the sailors and fans for our August 12 event.”

Because of the need for three marks to be constantly moving due to changing wind direction and length of course desired, Grosse Pointe Yacht Club and the Premiere Sailing League USA plan to test a new remote-controlled buoy system for the races.

“There are so many elements that make all this truly exciting, but the key thing is that it starts at one time and finishes at another, just like a basketball game,” said Cross. “Life today is all about justifying your free time, and if you can clearly say that from beginning to end something will last four hours, that our families can join in, and we’re going to have a lot of fun, it’s going to change the way people view the sport of sailing.”

For more detailed information on the Premiere Sailing League USA, visit; contact us at, or find us on Facebook. For more information about the Great Lakes Boating Festival, visit