CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - If you're by the water this weekend you may spot a few hundred or so more sail boats than usual.
Thousands of people are flocking to the Holy City for Charleston Race week which kicks off Friday.
The 21st edition keelboat regatta is the largest of its kind in both North and South America and despite April showers, the weather wasn't a deterrence for racers looking to sail from Charleston Harbor Resort and the Marina.
"I'm looking forward to it. You have to stay in game mode," Hanna Horan said."It's a premier race in the United States as far as yacht racing goes."
The largest keelboat Regetta in the America's reels in roughly 2000 sailors from across the globe.
One of them is College of Charleston's Thomas Talbot.
"The biggest thing here in Charleston is the current," Talbot said."It's always a major factor here when we're sailing. "
Talbot expects rough waters and gray skies while competing.
But he says he'll be thinking clear horizons.
"Basically it's going to be teamwork, making sure we can handle the boat," Talbot said.
The field spans from amateurs to Olympic level sailors.
All prepared for drizzles, heavy wind gusts and whatever else Mother Nature has in store.
"I didn't anticipate the rain but it didn't bother me," Talbot said."The weather is going to be what the weather is going to be."
"The rain is always a bummer because you have to put on all the gear," Eddie Evans said."There is going to be plenty of wind today and we're going to have to prepare ourselves."
Each sailor prepared with the right gear and the will to win.
The competition begins Friday and will run through Sunday, April 17.
"There will be nearly 200 boats racing in the harbor with another 50-plus racing offshore," said spokesperson Dan Dickison.
The draw of the race brings economic positives to the Lowcountry.
According to analysts, Charleston Race Week has an economic impact of nearly $4 million.
The proceeds from this event are used to benefit numerous sailing oriented nonprofit organization in the Lowcountry.