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Armenian Sailors Win 2 Trophies in International Yacht Race

Newport_to_Ensenada_trophies._2011Newport Beach, CA, July 2011 – A crew of five Armenians won two trophies in the 64th annual Newport to Ensenada Yacht race, an international sailing event. A total of 175 sailboats participated in the race, which is 125 miles.

The Armenian sailors, Puzant Zorayan, Civan Kocar, George Mahshigian, Ara Karakesis and Garbis Kojaian, won the Secretary of Foreign Relations-Mexico trophy for coming in FIRST among 79 boats in the "CRUZ ALL BOATS" class. They also received the Union Bank trophy for coming in FIRST in the "CRUZ NA" class of 7 boats. The boat they sailed, C’est La Vie, is a 44-foot Beneteau. The sailors flew the Armenian flag.

“It was a very slow start because there was little to no wind,” says Zorayan, the skipper of the boat. “But constant trimming and small adjustments put us in an early lead.” Instead of sailing south, the Armenians used their computer to track winds in the area. They sailed due west more than 10 miles until they picked up winds, then sailed south.

“The secret was staying up all night. Some people take it easy at night, but we were working the sails to pick up the wind whenever we could find it,” Mahshigian related.

“I think I slept 1½ hours,” recalls Zorayan. “I wanted to make sure we used every bit of wind to our advantage.”

The official non-corrected race time for C’est La Vie was: 28:03:04 (28 hours, 3 minutes, 4 seconds). The corrected time was 24:00:26, reflecting the adjusted time for the boat.

This was the second year that Zorayan and his team entered the race. Zorayan, who is in the computer business, was joined by Mahshigian, a futures broker; Kojaian, a marine engineer; Karakesis, a professional fisherman; and Kocar, a rancher and entrepreneur.

For over 64 years, the Newport Ocean Sailing Association (NOSA) has been the organizing authority for the Newport to Ensenada Yacht Race, which is 125 miles. The race provides novices and seasoned professionals with the unique challenge of a long-distance, overnight race from Newport Beach, California, to Ensenada, Mexico.

Additional information about the Newport to Ensenada race can be found at


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