Sunday, December 31, 2006

Monkey Around


I got this beautiful shot of Peter Rahn's Wayfarer after writing about small boat sailing in Montreal. Like many former dinghy sailors, Peter has a keelboat that he races now. With just a few more sailors, though "Old Monkeys" as a new sailing phenomenon could happen! See down the page for earlier article. Another member at BYC has suggested using the Squadron dinghies. Varied boats, one design, boat ownership or using club boats - the possibilities are many!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Bird's Eye View of Lachine

I've recently been enjoying the use of Google Earth. I thought I should share with Montreal sailors some of the satellite shots I've been viewing. From time to time, I will post photos of the harbours where most of us keep our boats, as well as some others. This one is of the Lachine shoreline. I like it because it shows where the rapids become a serious whitewater affair. Actually, I remember the water being quite nasty on the other side of the land barrier protecting the harbour too. You can see the Mercier bridge, and a train bridge traversing the white water. On the south shore is the canal. The harbour in Lachine is wonderfully protected, and leads to the old Lachine Canal. There is a dinghy club in the protected water too. Nice area with a lot of public greenspace, but still, I'd be a little nervous about getting caught on the wrong side in the current!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Dinghy Fever

Fleet 413 12/10/06

I've got dinghy fever right now! Here is video from the Laser Fleet 413 in Newport last week. No, I,m not suggesting Frosties in Montreal's December weather, even though it's pretty mild right now. Old Monkeys in Montreal will hopefully be inspired to get together something for the upcoming season! Very cool video!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Old Monkeys

This is a picture of my old plywood Y-Flyer. I love my dinghy, even if it is heavy and large for a dinghy. It is still a sleek, responsive and fast one-design class. New ones are currently built out of fibreglass, and have aluminium masts. It was my first boat. And yes, it is sadly neglected. It is in need of a total rebuild, and the replacement of structural bulkheads. It's primary purpose at present is to monopolize the garage, thereby deflecting my wife's tendency to accumulate any garden tools that I might be forced to use. As shown, the boat also serves as a handy storage shelf for my keelboat stuff. Yes, I am embarrassed. I will not let it go though, so its other main purpose is irritant for my more rational partner. I often say it is my (distant) retirement project, as a way of indicating my stubbornness, and ability to test my marriage. This "Y" is number 112, built in the 1950s in nearby Sainte Anne de Bellevue. This all is to lead up to a thought I've been contemplating, particularly now with winter approaching. My apologies to Pete Seeger and any other real folkies out there.


Where have all the dinghy sailors gone?
Long time passing
Where have all the dinghy sailors gone?
Long time ago
Where have all the dinghy sailors gone?
Fixed keels, broad hips, bellies, yes everyone
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Simple fun, cheap fun, little boats, racing and messin'’ about. Could some of us old guys and gals re-discover it! No snobbery, no big investment, some comradeship and mutual skill building.

Think how much easier it would be to bring boats south and sail in the winter. Or travel to any regatta!

I even have a name for such an aggregate of sailing stiffs: the "“Old Monkeys Sailing Association"”! And no, one would not necessarily have to be that old to enter. Let'’s say anyone too old for squadron, and not yet confined to palliative care.

Old monkeys, hanging off the gunnels, or NOT! Messin' about in small boats, perhaps fixing up, rigging, sharing, sailing and racing together. Old monkeys, wet rats, near-dead ducks, just think of the fun with self-deprecating humour! Old heavy trainers or nimble Lasers, no matter, just an opportunity for cheap and cheery fun!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Montreal Sailors in Argentina

Alain Dubuc of PCYC and crew Mark Herendeen have been racing the Tornado World's in San Isidro, Argentina which just wrapped up Sunday. Canadian champs Oskar Johansson and Kevin Stittle were also there. The championship was won by Australians Darren Bundock and Glenn Ashby with a race to spare.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

What the Heck was Going On Here?

Here is a shot from the recent Etchells World Championship, won by Jud Smith, mentor of Montreal sailors in the Etchells fleet. It's a little difficult to figure out what sail belongs to what boat going in what direction! I think those sails ought to be sold for a bigger discount after this regatta. Perhaps there is a little gelcoat work to be done too. Have you ever noticed that some Montreal Etchells sailors don't like to give smaller boats their due right of way unless forced. Geez, they eat their own too!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Jud Smith, Dirk Kneulman, et al take the big prize today



Jud Smith who has twice been to Montreal to help the budding Etchells fleet, has won the 2006 Etchells World Championship. Sailing with him were the 1998 World Champ, Canadian Dirk Kneulman, an Optimist sailor and an Optimist coach both from New Zealand. Yup, a team of four. Jud had earlier praised the Optimist sailor as doing a great job up front.

Dirk said he was very happy for their victory because Jud has been the best Etchells sailor for a long time. Jud thought that he didn't deserve to win the previous year because they were good below 15 knots, but too slow, and less able in heavy winds. Now, after a year long campaign, they've got everything right.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Teacher to Montreal Sailors teaches the fleet at Etchells Worlds


This is a very tenuous connection to Montreal sailing, but what the heck, it's our off-season. The St. Lawrence Valley Yacht Racing Association's regatta calendar included the Etchells World Championship in Australia this year. Well it may have been more for amusement it seems. In any case, no Montreal sailors are attending the event. I have found a connection though!

American, Jud Smith, elite sailor, and Etchells North American champ came to the Pointe Claire Yacht Club some time back to give the local fleet an inservice on tuning their rigs. By all accounts, it was a valued event. Now Jud has teamed up with Canadian Dirk Kneulman, and two others to compete at the World Championship. It appears the Montreal fleet picked a good mentor, because Smith et al are incredibly hot at the top of the board after three races. They have taken two firsts and second place so far.

In the today's third race of eight, Smith overtook Briton Andy Beadsworth on the final beat to take the gun with 37 seconds to spare. The famous winds called the Freemantle Doctor assured plenty of whitecaps or as Kiwi born PRO Denis Thompson said "There were plenty of sheep in the paddock." The race committee had a rough time today, needing 4 efforts to get a clean start away.

Beadsworth led Smith till the last leg which was shortened from 3 to 1.6 miles to recognize a large naval vessel steaming north. Beadsworth led Smith by 3 boatlengths on the last beat, but got muddled in traffic going down, while Smith found a clear lane to victory.

After the race Smith recalling the race, and the critical tactical moment, said "We sailed with our light medium jib and we think that helped us to the first mark. We stayed close all through the race to Andy Beadsworth. Then, at the final bottom mark, we switched gates with them. We faked left and went right, and he was committed to the left. I got snuckered just the same way by Dennis, and then last year by Hank Lammens and lost both times as you have to sail through the fleet to cover and that costs."

Andy Beadsworth's take on the move: "At the bottom mark against Jud, we made our own decision; went to the wrong mark, had a less than perfect drop and then had gas all the way up to the finish."

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Guylaine Bossé Cruising in Mexico

Montreal Sailing is always envious of those who manage to extend their sailing season by heading south after we haul our boats here. Guylaine is one such Montreal sailor. She is currently in Bahia Turtugas, which I think is a small town somewhere around the Turtle Bay in Mexico. The super photo is of Guylaine after a night shift. They sailed from San Diego to San Francisco, then along with the Baja Rally.

Of course, sailing is a pastime where things easily go wrong, and sometimes beyond what you can do, or prepare for. An unfortunate experience ended their sailing. While at anchor, a large motorboat operating on autopilot t-boned their yacht. The sailboat is apparently no longer seaworthy. Guylaine, and her skipper Pierre Alain suffered no injuries, though obviously it must have been quite a shock.

Guylaine wrote "The little village where we are is wonderful, the people are so SO friendly..and everybody somehow heard about our adventures."

The skipper and crew are making arrangements for insurance, and still intent on exploring the Baha area. Montreal Sailing is relieved that they are well, and hope Pierre Alain can now get a spectacular new yacht to cruise again!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Lightning Fleet prepping for 2007-8

Valerie Tardif of the R.St.L.Y.C. Lightning Fleet made an interesting announcement in their recent issue of the Foghorn. The club will be hosting the 2007 Canadian Championships next year on June 30th and July 1st. The club is also bidding for the 2008 Junior Worlds.

photo 2006 Youth World Championships, Jyvaskyla, Finland

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Montrealers on the podium at Soling World's


Sailing CAN #225, Peter Hall, Phil Karrigan, and Jay Deakin from the R.St.L.Y.C. have taken second place overall at the World Championship of the Soling Class. Racing in Annapolis, the Montreal sailors won the first and last races of the week long regatta that featured all levels of wind. Two boats sank in a big blow of up to 49 knots. A lot of damage and havoc such as bent masts occurred early in the regatta, in which all levels of wind were sailed in.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Pas De Deux Race












I love this race, not entirely undue to my good luck in it! However, obvously I am not alone in appreciating this fun day, for 22 boats raced this year. For some sailors on Lac St. Louis, it is the last outing of the year. Many others already have their masts down. Many haul out for the winter after this last race. Adding to the special feeling is that few motorboats are in evidence to disturb the magic at this late time of year.

The Pas De Deux is for a skipper and one active crew only. Two sailors, two white sails, and a drag race from Pointe Claire to Dowker's Island and back, sometimes with a zig or a zag thrown in, if there is plenty of wind. It is a distance race using the pursuit format. That is, the slowest boats get to cross the start line first, and the successively faster boats start later, depending on their handicap rating. Everyone is then expected to finish around the same time regardless of their boat's speed, and this can be exciting.

The story of the Pas De Deux goes further. This is a race, and so of course many are competing passionately. It is also for fun and to raise participation. So, points are alloted not only by ranking the finish times, but also by how many boats participate from each club. The club accumalating the most points wins the trophy. For many, it may be a race, but it is also simply that last wonderful sail up and down Lac St. Louis. Jim Rowlandson has been the inspirational and organizational force behind this race for the five consecutive years it has been held. Thanks Jim for extending our season!

This year, the race was run in very light wind, which is great news for the smaller boats. Yachts with a long waterline can't stretch their legs as much without the necessary wind. As a result, the Tanzer 22, Shark, and Mirage 24 classes were able to break through the longer boats, and mix it up at the finish. Erica Moore pointed out a big decision had to be made early in the race: drive straight towards the windward mark over the mid-river current, or ride the more circuitous route near land where the shore breeze increased the pace. A lot of the race was close hauled, even after rounding the windward mark. Nevertheless, it's still often at least a little off the wind, and this point of sail off light wind also helps the boats with masthead rigs and big genoas. Hence, these advantages combined with the incredible sailing skills on Ambitious, helped the Tanzer 22 squeeze between two Etchells at the finish. Indeed, I will argue that we might have even given the mighty little boat a first place flag had it not been for a human gaffe!

After rounding the windward mark, we noticed the race committee boat moving towards that previous mark and stopping nearby. We then noticed the crash boat doing likewise. Gasp! It looked like they had moved the finish line to near the mark we had already rounded for a shortened course. The fallible humans argued over whether the course had been shortened, then turned the eager little boat around and headed back straight towards the tailing fleet. Hmm... the other boats rounding the mark did not turn towards the committee boat. Yikes, the race committee was only taking photos! We turned again, and headed to Pointe Claire and the finish once again. I could only laugh and hope that our lead had not been fatally diminished. Laurence on the other hand was not laughing. Then again, when racing she rarely does!

Brian and Madeleine Palfreeman did manage to ride the current by us to lead near the end. However then, the course really was shortened, and they found themselves on a less speedy point of sail to the relocated finish. Pierre Jasmin had been quietly working slightly stronger wisps of wind nearer shore, and nipped by on our left for the gun. Then, we crossed, followed by Ben and Lin, and the Palfreemans - all four boats each separated from the other by a few boatlengths after hours of racing.

Michel Roch and Luc Vallee had the impossible task of racing the biggest, fastest boats in insufficiently very light winds, and with a starting time that was not till almost 24 minutes after the scratch boat! It was great to see these and some of the other big boats out on the race course.

Below is results data in order of place, skipper's name, boat name, boat class, sail #, start time from scratch, club. PCYC won the trophy!

  1. Pierre Jasmin, Vivace, Etchells, 699, 17:14.0, PCYC
  2. Ralph Stocek, Ambitious, T22, 92, 01:31.0, BYC
  3. Ben l'Esperance, Vim, Etchells, 558, 17:14.0, PCYC
  4. Brian Palfreeman, Tactic, Etchells, 305, 17:14.0 PCYC
  5. Paul Lhotsky, Andanzas, Laser 28, 211, 18:49.0, RStLYC
  6. Toff Nichol Griffith, Shark, 1465, 00:00.0, PCYC
  7. Tony McBride, Fast Company, J80, 148, 21:11.0, PCYC
  8. Luc Gloutney, Allegro, Etchells, 956, 17:14.0,PCYC
  9. Patrick Flaherty, Tara 2, Aloha 8.2, 58, 02:00.0, RStLYC
  10. Peter Vatcher, Wayward Wind, T22, 1487, 01:31.0, PCYC
  11. Laird Glass, Oasis, T22,183, 01:31.0, PCYC
  12. Allan Rheaume, Drumroll, C&C30-II, 30090, 10:41.0, RStLYC
  13. Erica Moore, Ariel, Mirage 24, 123, 02:59.0, PCYC
  14. John Macleod, Chinook, Mirage 24, 250, 02:59.0, PCYC
  15. Ron Cornelow, Karibel, Mirage 27-1, 18, 03:38.0, RStLYC
  16. Gerry McGee, Dazzle, C&C29 2, 84184, 11:42.0, RStLYC
  17. Stephan Blais, Premature Grey, J24, 4260, 12:42.0, PCYC
  18. Andre Turenne, Farr 38, 25:00.0, RStLYC
  19. Mike Guay, Fat Cat, Catalina 25, 4924, 02:00.0, PCYC
  20. Dan O'connell, My Wind Lass, C&C32, 63034, 13:30.0, PCYC
  21. Luc Vallee, Le Loup Marin, Elite 364, 54350, 18:49.0, RStLYC
  22. Michel Roch, Stargazer XX, C&C36+, 50640, 23:59.0 RStLYC

Friday, September 29, 2006

CHILLY BOWL REGATTA

Beaconsfield Yacht Club has opened up it's Chilly Bowl regatta to other SLVYRA clubs! This is a Pursuit race. Boats have different starting times depending on their PHRF handicap rating. All things being equal the competitors are expected to finish at the same time. Of course that never happens but the finishes are very exciting.

Register by calling the Club Office (514-695-1272) by Friday, September 29th, or sign up on the list that will be left at the bar all day Friday and Saturday morning. You must register by 11:00 am on Saturday morning.

The course will be announced at the skippers meeting on the Club Deck at 12:30, Saturday, 30th September. The start and finish shall be between inflatable course drop mark and the main BYC breakwater. A spacer buoy may be used off the end of the breakwater. Boats shall not pass between this mark and the breakwater. The race will be started in accordance with Rule 26. Signals will be flown from the breakwater on a flag staff or prominently displayed by the Race Committee.


Warning 1330 hours - (White flag)

Preparatory 1331 hours - (P flag up)

One Minute 1334 hours - (P flag down)

Start – Scratch Boat (s) 1335 hours - (White flag down)


A sound signal will be made for each starter or group of starters. In the event of a premature start, the Race Committee shall endeavour to signal the offending yacht by hailing her sail number. However, it is the responsibility of the skipper to start at the correct time. Starting times will be provided at the skippers' meeting.



Note: Following the race, Chilli will be served in the clubhouse.


Beaconsfield Yacht Club
26 Lakeshore Road
Beaconsfield, Québec
H9W 4H3
514-695-1272, www.byc.qc.ca

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Last 2006 Good Neighbours Race

There may be many of you out there who have sailed higher winds, but last Sunday was a personal record for me. Lac St. Louis was about as stirred a pot as I have ever seen, and the most I have ever sailed in.

Early in the morning, we walked the docks and peered beyond the harbour at the whitecaps. Sailors asked each other "Are you going out?", or "What sails are you using?" We were certainly going to race, and thought carefully about sail selection, but the wind kept building. First it was the #2 genoa, then with a reefed mainsail. Then, we thought it best to be conservative, and switched to the #3. "Well, lets keep the reef in the mainsail too." I suggested to nods in the affirmative. Finally, we also double-reefed the mainsail! Finally, I went over the rigging, and tightened up the forestay and shrouds. I didn't want any leeward slack and stress today. All of this before we had left harbour. The iron jenny was started and the 4 of us motored out of the harbour. It was a good day to be a full 4 crew.

As soon as we slowly moved beyond BYC's protected harbour, we could feel the speeding spray and rocking of the boat. Indications were the winds persistently continuing to build. The crew readied the sails for raising, and we turned to windward. The outboard motor swamped in between waves, and lifted its prop out of the crests, then stalled. Thankfully, it started again immediately.

The sails went up, and the boat heeled into the waves and sliced over the tops. The Tanzer 22's motion seemed remarkably stable given the conditions. I am accustomed to the T22 slamming over chop, and there was none of that. The gusts were still overpowering, but with a quick hand on the mainsheet, quite maneageable. I concluded we had chosen a very good sail arrangement. It is so satisfying to find the right balance of sails and wind, and propel safely forward when it's honking. Let there be no doubt, the Tanzer 22 is a good, safe boat in heavy wind.

A look at the knotmeter indicated over 7 & 1/2 knots of speed reaching through the chaos, despite the small sail area, and the waves. We are not used to much wave action on our river, so when one crew member noted that a stern wave was over his head, it was a marvel. Even, if that observation is made while the bow climbs the next wave, it is unusual for Lac St Louis. We sped by the race committee boat as marks were being set, and a couple of Etchells and Tanzer 22's struggled nearby. Chris Paynter was out with his T22, and so was John Linton. Chris was sporting a reefed main and a #3. John had a #2 up. Apparently, he had left his #3 at home. Yikes.

As the start time neared the boat mix began to change. Jake Fitchten's T22 went off to save a Fireball dinghy that had overturned. He ended up returning with them to PCYC. The two Etchells helmed by Dick Stefan and David Covo had been struggling mightily, and wisely retreated to the safety of the PCYC harbour. I wonder why those boats don't have mainsails that can be reefed? Next bail-out was John Linton who had been reaching along the start line with his #2. He kept on going beyond the line and back towards BYC.

We had continued on beyond the start line, and it rapidly shrunk in the distance. It was time to turn around and make our way back, but I didn't feel too comfortable jibing in the wind. At that point I realized it had likely built up to the high 30's (knots). We went for a chicken-jibe, spinning upwind to tack and move back downwind. It wasn't much of a spin though. The bow pushed into a big wave, and stopped the turn. Losing momentum, we had to lay off and try again. It took three tries to turn around. We had to turn upwind, build speed, then turn at the right time to not be deflected by a wave. Now, the wind was higher than I had ever experienced before, and I couldn't estimate the strength. It took us a while to make our way back to the start line and cross, but that we did. Al was doing race committee, and I think he was hoping we would not cross, and he could call off the race! Chris had a good lead by that time, but we were having a blast, and wanted to sail. We got around the windward-leeward course once, and then decided we had had enough heavy weather experience. One crew member was feeling nausea from having worked at the mast, and we thought we would make for the nearest harbour, PCYC. Chris Paynter brilliantly completed the two laps of the course in his T22, the only boat to do so. Then, his #3 blew up on the way back to BYC.

A little later, I measured the wind from the shore at BYC. It was mostly in the high 30's, with a high of 41.6 knots. This clearly from a position where the wind was deflected and slowed. Away from shore in open unobstructed area, the wind, waves, and water were still clearly moving at an even faster, but undetermined rate!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

2006 « Mondial » Tanzer 26

There is no more apt way to put it. On Sunday, it was blowing stink! There were actually sailors out there trying to race on both both LDM and LSL. Here is another great report from Pierre Marois on the an annual event in which big wind is the norm. Soon, we shall also have a report on what happened on LSL.

(photo from 2004 event)

The 18th edition of the Mount Gay Rum Tanzer 26 « Mondial » was held last weekend at the Club de Voile des Laurentides. 8 races where scheduled. Five boats from CVL and one from the Club de Voile Baie d’Urfé participated.

Saturday, it rained for a good part of the day! The conditions were foggy with periods of heavy rain, but at least there was wind from the East at 5 to 12 knots. The race committee, under the supervision of Pierre Charbonneau, was able to run 4 races on the East side of the CVL lighthouse before the wind completely died in late afternoon. The competition was close between the top 4 boats and in particular between Roland Marois’ AUTAN and Michel Gauthier’s IDYLLE. Pierre Marois’ 2005 Tanzer 22 North American winning crew was on AUTAN while Patrice Delhaes, the 2006 Tanzer 22 North American champion steered IDYLLE.

After the first day, AUTAN (2,1,1,1) led IDYLLE (1,3,2,3), Claude Daviault’s LAVOIE LIBRE, Camille Bourgeois’ PEGASE, Annie Martin’s MER-VEILLE and LE PERIGOT from BDYC.

Saturday night, a regatta supper was organised by Yvon Chalifour and rainbow trout was served to more than 20 participants! Needless to say, our sponsor’s products were also in evidence during the evening!

On Sunday morning, racers where greeted by 30 knots winds and 4 foots waves in the St-Placide bay. Forecasters predicted that the winds would increase even more during the day and they were right! The first race was run in 30 to 35 knots winds with 40 knots gusts! The Y flag was hoisted and everybody had to wear their PFDs. All T26’s were racing with #3 jibs and single or double reefed mainsails. The race was won by AUTAN in front of IDYLLE and LAVOIE LIBRE. The two other boats scored DNF’s; PEGASE had a ripped mainsail and MER-VEILLE lost a crewmember overboard during the second downwind leg and had to drop sails and start their engine to recover her!

By the end of the race, the winds had increased even more (a steady 35 knots with 45 knots gusts!) and the RC had the good sense to cancel all the remaining races and return the fleet to harbour. The three horns where met with cheers from all remaining participants!

In the overall results, AUTAN finished first in front of IDYLLE and LAVOIE LIBRE and Roland Marois won the Tanzer 26 trophy for a record 8th time. CVL race flags and Mount Gay rum, caps and T-shirt where awarded to the first 3 boats.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Turkey Bowl Competitors Gobbled up by Fog

Saturday's Turkey Bowl was a success despite rain and fog. 13 boats came out to compete from BYC, PCYC, and the RStLYC. I had the honour of serving on race committee with David Speak and Michael Paynter. We somehow received compliments on the course set which was a nice surprise. David went to windward towing a mark to be set, and before long disappeared in the fog. After a while, we heard his voice crackle over the radio, "How's this?" It was quite amusing considering we had no idea how far out he was, nor whether his course continued to be directly to windward. Essentially we were dependent on David's good blind judgement, and good it was. Watching the boats on a returning leg we could see competitors appear out of the fog flying wing-on-wing, so we knew we were lined up pretty well. A few competitors noted finding the drop marks through the mist was a bit of a hunting game!

All of the Etchells took the top honours with David Lowther being the first one. The Etchells were all pretty tightly grouped and tactically duking it out. Then on the last leg, David jibed away and took advantage of a good lift, as he crossed the line with a good margin over the remaining fleet. Bravo David. I'm not certain but I believe David Covo was also on board, and I didn't catch the third.

The first PHRF III boat over the line was Don Osborne and Nick Van Haeften in their Shark, followed by Peter Rahn and his son, also in a Shark. Don and Nick had a good timely start, and immediately got a tack in to get on the favoured long tack, and clear their air from the Etchells. Then they disappeared into the mist! There were some bigger boats racing too, Ben Waring sailed his Grampian 26 with his son, and a Mirage 30 and a large C&C mixed it up too. Beverly Gilbertson expertly guided her smaller Tanzer 22 through the thick part of the fleet

Back at the club, everyone gobbled up hot turkey sandwiches and we raffled off a bunch of turkeys. The higher your finish the more tickets you got, so the best had an edge, but there were many to go around. It was really a great afternoon despite the wet weather, and getting the sailors from different clubs together to chat post-race was a good thing.

Lastly, on the club deck, PCYC invited BYC sailors to their "Pas De Deux" Distance Pursuit race with RStLYC, and BYC reciprocated by inviting PCYC competitors to their Chili Bowl next week. I love it!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Still some great racing this weekend



Yes, fall is here, but the sailing is great, and the season isn't over yet, Have a look at the Montreal Sailing calendar to the left, and you'll see there are plenty of events. The Turkey Bowl is a fun event, that I haven't done before, but this year I will serve on the Race Committee. It is a white sail race using PHRF handicaps and a single start. The course will be using SLVYRA marks and possibly drop marks to criss-cross Lac St. Louis. TURKEYS are raffled off to the competitors who get a higher number of raffle tickets corresponding with their placing in the competition. Even those who score a DNS or DNF get a ticket. Hot turkey sandwiches will be offered by BYC after the event. The gun is at 1:00 pm on Saturday.

Also this week end is the Mondial Tanzer 26, a one design event that is sure to provide the most exciting racing of the week end. Pierre Marois wrote an excellent piece on it for Montreal Sailing which you can find by clicking on the July 2006 archive. This year it is sponsored by Mount Gay Rum. Ahh, beautiful fall sailing, then a hot turkey sandwich at BYC, or a hot rum toddy at CVL... life's good!

Sunday marks the last two races of the Good Neighbour Series C, so there will be some hot sailing there by those trying to get a flag for the series. CNDM, CVMO and BDYC all have club racing, and the Solings have a one design race scheduled that is part of a series! Montreal Sailing would love to hear about that if anyone is in the know.

Calendar Feature on Montreal Sailing

I love this new part of Montreal Sailing, a calendar with all the racing in our area! It's on the left side column. You may need to scroll down a bit. The calendar automatically shows the upcoming 4 weeks of racing events. If you click on an event, it brings you to the Google Calendar itself, and you can probe other months. That will be useful next year with a whole season's events to choose from. All the events listed are the S.L.V.Y.R.A. regattas, plus the club races and other events from club websites. During the approaching offseason, if anyone has meetings or club events still happening, I would be happy to post them.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Team Osborne wins BYC Club Championship


From the Crews’ Union:

On what must have been one of the best weekends weather wise this summer, nine of Beaconsfield Yacht Club’s finest, which included a Niagara 26, four Tanzer 22’s and four Sharks, sailed out to do battle on Saturday, September 16th in the Annual Club Championship Regatta. This invitation only event featured BYC sailors who qualified by their performance at local events through the summer.

Beautiful sunshine, warm weather and an eight to ten knot breeze welcomed in the first race at 12:30pm. Gold Cup courses were the order of the day. A significant wind shift just before the start meant that those who had picked the pin end of the line were hot out of the gate! The Tanzer 22 team skippered by John Linton was first out of the blocks and held the lead with excellent boat speed around the windward mark. The white sail format was a change/challenge for a number of competitors, and wing & wing sailing was the order of the day on the offwind legs. Jin Fratti’s team on Shark #711 were in second with the Osborne Shark team in third. Things tightened up considerably for the top three on the off-wind legs and all three rounded at close quarters. A favourable shift on the left hand side of the course allowed Team Osborne to round the windward mark just ahead of Team Linton. The dead run to the finish line was a battle, with the masthead genoa of the Tanzer looming large over the fractional rig of the Shark. Linton crossed the finish line four seconds ahead of Osborne, finishing second after the handicaps were applied. Team Fratti finished third.

The second race saw Team Osborne lead from wire to wire. The battle in this race was for second where once again, it was a Tanzer and a Shark dueling on the final leg, a dead run – sans spinnaker. Once again, the offwind advantage went to the Tanzer, with Linton finishing second and Fratti third.

The third and final race proved to be the most intense, with lots of action around the leeward mark!! Team Benedetti in the Niagara 26, showed incredible speed and sailed away from the pack on the first beat. It would be a lead that not relinquished. Team Langeder in Tanzer 22 Breezin’ were the second team around the windward, with Linton, Fratti, Teams Gilbertson and Paynter (both in T22’s) all in a tight pack. The two offwind legs were a parade – making for a very interesting meeting at the leeward mark.
A rather quick flip onto starboard immediately upon rounding led to some raised voices, a little bumping and a lot of congestion. When the smoke had cleared, Team Osborne had crept up from seventh place into second, steering wide of the commotion and maintaining boat speed.

The Niagara crossed the line first; with Team Osborne crossing second and winning the championship with three first place finishes on corrected time. Team Linton finished second and Team Fratti rounded out the podium.
The racing was very tight and all teams are to be congratulated. The Crews’ Union would be remiss if we did not congratulate BYC Sailing Chairman Ben Waring, and Club Manager David Speak on an outstanding job of race management.

CU

Monday, September 18, 2006

Screwball

The Fireball sailors have just completed their Screwball Regatta at PCYC. 16 boats were in attendance. This regatta was part of a series this year put on by Ottawa and Montreal sailors. For 2006, the top prize goes to Joe Jospe and Tom Egli. They were in fourth place at the end of the first day, even though they took a bullet in one race, and did well in the others too. That placing was taking into account the drop of a 10th place. Then, on the second day, they placed 4th in the first race, then took command of the regatta with two bullets to top off their weekend.

Rob Levy and Phil Lawee had the same number of bullets as the victors but had to settle with second overall. Jospe and Levy are highly competitive and often very close in their finishes. Usually, these two are at the top of the Fireball fleet. Another duo that had a superb regatta were the sailors third overall, Eric Owston and Joe Grant. They took one first place and three second positions, for a powerful showing.

It looks like the Fireball fleet in Montreal are continuing to defy the dismal state of dinghy racing in the area. This class continues to host high performance sailing. It is indeed the only small centreboarder with crews in the trapeze that offers regular racing.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Quebec Star Fleet Championship 2006

Here is a report from Philipe Hofer on the recent Star championship. Thanks Philippe!

A fleet of 8 boats showed up for a beautiful weekend of sailing on Lac Des Deux-Montagnes. Unfortunately for some of them, this would prove to be trying times for their equipment and patience.

The competitors showed up early Saturday morning, and were greeted by a building 10 knot breeze. By the start of the first race, the breeze was blowing at a solid 12-14 knots, with puffs in the 16 range, which turned out to be the order of the day. Sailing with an older fleet of boats, with typical conditions in the 6-8 range, these conditions proved to a little testing for some of the boats. Three boats either retired, or had to do on shore repairs on this first day of racing. Breaks varied from a snapped main halyard, to a ripped off the deck traveler track. Two races were run on course 4 and one on course 3, in a northwesterly oscillating breeze. Part of the fleet regrouped Saturday evening for a BBQ dinner, and to share the stories of the day.

On Sunday, the fleet made it out to race course in a building breeze that started a little softer than Saturday at 6-8 knots, but ended up in the same 12-14 knot range by the end of the second race. After the end of the 5th race (of a scheduled 6 race regatta) William Hendershot headed for shore with 5 bullets, and the rest of the fleet followed as the last race would have not changed anything in the standings.

At the end of the weekend, William Hendershot walked away with his 5th consecutive fleet title, followed by Philippe Hofer, and André Marcotte.

Rank

Boat

Skipper

Crew

August 12th

August 13th

Total

1

6756

Hendershot

Vranderick

1

1

1

1

1

DNS

5

2

7940

Hofer

Macot

2

2

3

2

3

DNS

12

3

7044

Marcotte

Croteau

3

4

2

3

4

DNS

16

4

7520

Gagnon

Després

4

3

5

4

2

DNS

18

5

794

Gravel

Dionne

5

5

6

DNS

DNS

DNS

34

6

6633

Seguin

Farmer

DNF

DNS

4

5

DNF

DNS

36

7

6687

Molimard

Molimard

DNF

DNS

DNS

DNS

DNS

DNS

45

8

7067

Berger

Ryan

DNC

DNC

DNC

DNC

DNC

DNS

45

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Tanzer 22 North American Championship: Wrap Up


The T22 North American Championship for 2006 was held in plenty of wind, September 3-4th, hosted by Hudson YC. In fact, the first day had winds peaking at 25-30 knots. Racers used a variety of sail options with reefed mains, #2 genoa and #3 working jib foresails. There were gear breakdowns, and a Dragon approached Patrice Dehaes' Turbo on port tack, and got his backstay snagged. The Dragon lost it's mast which broke in two. Other boats were racing on the same course with different starts, but this was the only incident resulting in such a failure. Ambitious and Sine Wave did collide right in front of the finish line at the conclusion of the final race, while in the front pack! No significant damage other than frayed competitive nerves were the result. A lot of competitors crossed the finish line from behind while the collision victims sorted themselves out!

Regatta favourite, Patrice Delhaes dropped out of the first race after the collision with the Dragon, but it appears the day would belong to Ken Hodgson's Sloop de Jour anyway. With three 1sts. in the 4 heavy air races of day 1, Ken who owns Tanzer Boat Parts can also be known as this year's heavy air King. Other than the DNF due to the collision, Patrice' Turbo picked up a 2nd and two 3rds., HYC Club Manager, Trevor Collins was able to race his T22 this week end and took 3rd overall, followed by HYC Club Champion Bernard Le Duc a point behind. In 5th overall the first day, Derek Prest's Westerhall from Nova Scotia did well despite some errors in recording his finishes, and a spinnaker broach that filled the cockpit with water. Tanzer 22 sailors be reminded: keep your lower washboard in place in the companionway! Westerhall picked up a bullet in race #4 to top off the first day. Also from Nova Scotia, Doug Caldwell and crew picked up a 2nd in the first race of the regatta.

The second race day brought easier winds that were still strong enough for good racing. This day would belong to Turbo which took bullets in all three races. Patrice and his crew are able to extract extraordinary speed out of their boat, and this served them superbly. Trevor Collins and crew sailing Penny Wise came on big time the second day picking up two 2nds and a 3rd. Sloop de Jour took two 3rds and a 5th. Phil Wilcox from Ottawa was sailing with different and varying crew, and did very well with the more moderate wind the second day. In the final race he picked up a 2nd place.

I don't know about the first day, but Montreal Sailing must make special note of Ken Barrieau and Chris Campbell who each sailed their race boats with only one crew the second day, and did so with spinnaker very, very well!

It was good to see Tanzer sailors travelling to make their class' championship. Tanzerites came from 6 different clubs and three provinces. Daniel Godbout and Phil Wilcox came from Ottawa, and Doug Caldwell and Derek Prest brought two boats and an army of crew and partners from Grand Lake YC in Nova Scotia. 3 boats came from Lac St. Louis. With boats from Lac Des Deux Montagnes that made for a total of 15. Not bad considering the heavy air and rain the first day, and the difficulties being experienced by top end racing these days.

Regatta Chair Pat Patterson, main on the water race official and guru Ross Tellier, and all the volunteers from HYC and CVL worked hard to give the Class a great regatta. Run concurrently with Hudson's Annual Regatta made for great organization, fun parties, and the maximum number of Tanzers given the Class popularity on Lac Des Deux Montagnes in Montreal. The historic North American nautical clock trophy had no more room left for this year's winner plate, so Pierre Marois refurbished the trophy with a new teak base, and it looks as impressive as ever.

Results

Order of stats are position, boat, Sail #, skipper, club, finishes
1 Turbo, 650, P. Delhaes, CVL, DNF, 2, 3, 3, 1, 1, 1
2 Sloop de Jour, 1093, K. Hodgson, HYC, 1, 1, 1, 7, 3, 3, 5
3 Penny Wise, 489, T. Collins, HYC, 4, 5, 4, 2, 2, 2, 3
4 Maverick, 44, B. LeDuc, HYC, 3, 4, 2, 5, 4, 8, 6
5 Westerhall, 2172, D. Prest, GLYC, 5, 7, 5, 1, 9, 4, 4
6 Sine Wave, 835, J. Fichten, PCYC, 7, 6, 6, 6, 8, 5, 11
7 Beagle, 1681, P. Wilcox, 9, 9, 9, 10, 5, 6, 2
8 Freyja, 1801, D. Caldwell, GLYC, 2, 8, 8, 12, 9, 9, 10
9 Encore Une Fois, 1099, J. Linton, BYC, 8, 10, 10, 4, 6, 10, 8
10 Shigawac, 413, C. Campbell, HYC, 6, 3, 7, 8, 11, 14, 15
11 Knot a Clew, 1531, M.Laventure, HYC, 10,11 12, 11, 12, 11, 12
12 Charisma, 20, K.Barrieau, HYC, DNC, DNC, DNC, DNC, 7, 7, 7
13 Sherrie, 89, D.Godbout, 11, 12, 11, 9, 14, 15, 14
14 Ambitious, 92, R. Stocek, BYC, DNF, DNC, DNC, DNC, 13, 13, 9
15 Evergreen, 1618, C. Paynter, BYC, DNC, DNC, DNC, DNC, 10, 12, 13

Monday, September 04, 2006

Tanzer 22 North American Championship

The T22 N.A.s got off to an intense start yesterday with very high winds playing their way down the course upriver from the hosting Hudson Yacht Club. Gear break downs and a collision with a PHRF racer on the course, whose mast snapped in two, were evidence off tough conditions. No interimn results yet from the 4 races held, and a lot of the racers believe they are in a potential podium position, so the racing should continue to be hot today for the final three races. Teams from Ontario, Nova Scotia, and the two Montreal areas are competing. Yesterday, the Coupe du Quebec was won by Patrice Delhaes in his T22, Turbo for being first T22 accross the line in Hudson's annual Long Distance race.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Hudson Annual Regatta ongoing

HYC's Annual Regatta had its ever popular long distance PHRF race yesterday. It was a downwind start for the 103 boats which made for a pretty exciting blast off. To make things even more interesting the wind shifted and a lot of us suddenly had to flip onto port tack on the line! The wind had favoured the committee boat which suddenly changed and the pin starters got a big advantage with favoured wind, and nice clean undisturbed wind too. Even more importantly the course was about a 10th of a nautical mile shorter from that end of the typically long line. A shrewd Tanzer 22 crew from Halifax had laid a waypoint when leaving the club, and thus had the knowledge on the start line. Most of the days winners started nearer the pin.

Big winners were Pierre Jasmin in his Etchells, Tof Nicholl-Griffith in his Shark, and Ron Harris in the J22. Patrice Delhaies was winner of the Tanzer Quebec Championship with the first T22 over. He just nipped over the line ahead and to leeward of Derek Prest and his T22 crew from Grand Lake, Nova Scotia.

Racing continues for two more days, and the Tanzer 22s have their North American Championship this year during the HYC regatta. Wind today is forecast to be 20-30 knots.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Trying a Shark in the Coupe Du Quebec


This past weekend, I had the pleasure of helming a Shark in the Coupe Du Quebec held at BYC. Also recently, Bob and I crewed in a Shark in the Montreal One Design Regatta. So, now I have done foredeck and helmed. Bob did mid-crew each time. Much thanks to Tony at PCYC for inviting us to crew, and now William for loaning his great boat. Being strangers to the boat, we didn't expect to place well and didn't! But, we were pleased to experience it, and see the Shark class in action. It was definitely worth it! The calibre of sailing talent in this class, both in Montreal and from Ontario is very high. We would have to seriously train for some time just to keep up with this class. As far as the boat itself, well it is a pleasure to sail. Having sailed a T22, some comparisons are inevitable, though it is important to understand that today the two classes really share little purpose of use, or design aspects in common. The Shark's outboard motor goes on and off the transom from storage, so we found it less hassle to paddle a bit, and raise the mainsail coming out of harbour. I actually enjoyed not starting up an iron jenny. The cockpit is rather cramped, since for the boat to be balanced and fast, the helmsman must sit forward of the traveler. I found using the traveler and tiller extension awkward from the forward position. The boom swings low, and thus the potential for accidents a bit higher. The boat is a fractional rig, and does not carry a lot of sail to power a fairly narrow and light hull compared to a T22. So, I found the boat sluggish in very light wind, but an absolute joy whenever the wind was moderate or higher. In heavy winds, the boat sliced through waves easily, and never presented a physical challenge to its crew. In the end, I concluded the Shark is a very safe, easy boat to sail even in difficult conditions, but a much more difficult boat to sail fast and competitively against talented members of the class! That makes the Shark Class a very attractive option for racing, particularly with its large one design racing circuit. Montreal has a good fleet, and active racing extends to many one design regattas in Ontario. Anyone wanting to campaign a relatively inexpensive keelboat in one design racing will find the Shark Class challenging fun. The usual cautions to finding and maintaining an old boat apply, since all Sharks are aged boats now. Certainly, one can find a wide range of boats from cheap fixer-uppers to beautifully-maintained dry sails, and everything in between. Another asset of the class is friendly good members like William, Nick, Jin and others who are happy to introduce people to the boat and keep the fleet healthy. Thanks guys.