The team racing will start at 1100 local time, conditions permitting. Fleet racing for the official class championship will run from Sunday through to Saturday 16 September, on a course set off Sunset Beach east of the city. Fleet racing will start at 1300 or 1430 on given days.
The team racing originally was scheduled for two days starting Thursday but was reduced to one day because of limited entries, most teams preferring to save their energy and concentrate on the full week of fleet racing to come later.
More than 70 of the skittish little two person skiffs from six countries and four continents are entered for the class's return to Long Beach and ABYC, which hosted the inaugural I-14 fleet racing global competition in 1979, and the team racing should set the tone.
American sailors are familiar with three boat team racing, where one or two of a team's boats attempt to observe and exploit right of way rules to advantage to obstruct the progress of rivals, while a team mate sails away to victory. It is a bit more complex in four boat team racing, especially when it involves craft as fast and close to the edge of control as I-14s.
Archie MASSEY, captain of the Great Britain team, said the basic strategy is, 'getting in each other's way.' The races will be two laps and MASSEY says, 'The first lap we're just going to fleet race,' then assess the situation and act accordingly.
The teams will be matched one on one in best of three semi-final eliminations, then the winners will meet for the title. The race course will be configured to run, in order, a beat to windward, a reach, a downwind run, a reach and a final beat to the finish.
Fleet racing entries include six past World Champions - New Zealand's Lindsey IRWIN, Great Britain's Rob GREENHALGH, America's Kris BUNDY, Australia's Grant GEDDES and Britain's Roddy BRIDGE and Martin JONES - but none will compete in the team racing, nor will local favourite Howard HAMLIN of Long Beach, sailing with Australia's Euan MCNICOL as crew.
Supporting sponsors for the International 14 World Championship are West Marine Products, Ronstan, North Sails, Glaser Sails, Irwin Sails, SailingProShop.com, Magic Marine, Acqua di Gio Georgio Armani, Shackle Dog and Labatt's.