Monday, December 26, 2011

Doing RC on a Race Night Early This Summer

Team Ambitious did Race Committee duty in late June, and truth be told, it was somewhat problematic, but still fun. It was an evening of light winds, which can make things more challenging. Still, it always beats working, and good stuff can happen. It was a lot of fun to join up with the usual RC people, who are out there for us every race night. Aileen, the main scorer knows almost every boat now.

First, we postponed the usual 6:40 pm countdown to wait for late boats. That is something I am not keen on with evening racing, but when you only have a handful of boats, and you can see most of the competitors are not only late, but are just leaving the mouth of their harbours, you don't have much choice. With a north breeze making our start line distant from shore, it took yet longer for the fleets to arrive. While we waited, the winds, already light and shifty, began their light evening die-down. Hmmm, perhaps, Montreal's oft-light summer period had begun. We sent off a mark boat to bring the windward marks in closer. Radio contact was lost . One mark was moved closer, but not close enough, and the 2nd mark for dinghies did not get moved. A second mark boat was dispatched with radio to re-establish communication at the windward end. The second mark is moved after some confusion. Neither mark is close enough for the light winds. However, at this point we need to get racing going without further delay, or it won't happen, given the wind and time. Most of the boats had arrived. So, we re-started the countdown sequence at 7:04 pm, and settled for a long race, and a late night. Still, all the fleets finished their races and were back in harbour well before sunset. Hooray for late summer nights. Sometimes, you just have to take what conditions are thrown at you and make the best of it.

The big shifts in wind were coming pretty frequently, so the favoured start-line side would change, but mostly ended up being the pin. The Fireballs congregated at that end making the start difficult to call. As many as 4 teams may have over early, but we only called out the 2 sail numbers we were certain of. In PHRF 3, Encore Une Fois went over early, re-started, and still accomplished finishing 2nd. Jospe and crew finished first, thanks to the two Fireballs that did not re-start after being OCS. Even in difficult winds, entertainment can always be had on the water.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Eclipse at 2011 Shark World's

Peter, Alexander, and on the foredeck Krista Rahn in action mode rounding weather mark. That sure looks like a quick launch! This great picture is yet another taken by Heather Deeks.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Clarke & Bjorn Finish 8th in the Medal Race at ISAF World's

Despite having to do a 720 degree penalty turn after being in fifth place at the first mark, Clarke and Bjorn fought back, sailing their Star to finish eighth in the final medal race at the 2011 ISAF World Championship in Perth, Australia. This gives them a tenth overall for the regatta.

The Start:
Montrealer Tyler Bjorn and BC native Richard Clarke had a fine start near the Race Committee boat, but it, of course, was a congested crowd. Of the 10 boats qualifying for the medal round, 6 of them chose the RC end. Clarke swung the bow up and down jostling for air and position for the last 20 seconds before the gun. The Polish team of Kusznierewicz & Zycki pointed right at the pin, and entirely alone, spurted out ahead of the fleet. The German team on #8414 saw the opportunity and followed the Poles left.

4 teams sailed from the start on the Canadians' windward side. The Swedes immediately ducked sterns to go right after clearing the RC boat, followed by a different German team on #8340 looking for clear air. That left the French right on Clarke & Bjorn's leeward hip, and the Norwegians a little more to the right. A cluster of teams sailed on the windward side of the Canucks, essentially all in the same pack. Clarke/Bjorn tacked out ducking the French and Norwegians to head right followed by the Americans and Brazilians.

Windward leg:
When the Swedes and Germans came back from the right on starboard, only two minutes into the race, the Canadians tacked to leeward and so did the Americans and Brazilians. Clarke/Bjorn led the pack back to the left in 6th overall. As boats bailed out of the cluster, the Canadian team pushed forward on the same tack.

Then, at three and a half minutes, Bjorn/Tyler tacked onto port sailing the same direction as most of the fleet. Crossing the rhumb line only a little more than four minutes into the race, they are already about a quarter up the short leg of a short, fast race.

By this point of the race, the Poles and Germans on 8414 who started alone at the pin and went left, sailed alone, and were in a strong leading position, first and second. The remainder of the fleet then all lined up side by side, all sailing on port tack, and about 10 to 15 metres separated them in terms of distance from leading boat. Clarke/Bjorn were now fourth.

It's all pretty close, and the Canadians bounced up and down in the standings in the tacking fleet. With no one reaching the laylines just yet, the Canadians made a bold tack, moving alone onto starboard, below the windward mark. This tactic helps them move into third position. Then, coming back at the fleet on port tack, they mix it up and jostle their way in to the layline. The whole fleet is jam packed in tight. Clarke/Bjorn get onto the starboard layline in 5th, but somehow manage to round the mark through the crazy melee of boats in 4th position.

Leeward leg:

Moving down the course, Clarke/Bjorn went left of the fleet, and were maintaining fourth to fifth position overall. Well to the left, they then spun the boat in two circles, a 720 degree penalty turn! This immediately put them into last position, tenth, and about 200 metres back from the leading Polish team. This was 14 minutes into the race. That sure seems like a heckuva lot of action for less than a quarter-hour!

Second Windward Leg:
The fleet passed through a leeward gate, still led by the Poles who go left to windward until they run smack up against bending land and tack. The Canadians went through the gate well back in tenth. Initially, they also headed to land, but then broke off to sail unhindered to the right. The fleet worked their way up without any consistently favoured or long tack. The Polish team rounded the windward mark all by themselves in first place. The Canucks are well back, still in last place working to windward. Then, below the windward mark, they repeated their methodology of the first windward rounding. They tacked to starboard still a good ways below the layline, and were sailing in relatively unhindered wind. Most of the boats then are mixing it up around the mark or on the starboard layline. Clarke/Bjorn continued to sail fast on starboard below the layline, and moved up, now into 8th place. The Swedes and Americans who were ahead on the same tack became involved in a pissing match and screwed each other up as they went out to the port layline. The Canadians opted not follow them, and instead tacked towards the starboard layline. The Americans and Swedes then approaching on port have to alter course to avoid boats, including the Canadians who just round ahead as the battling last teams approach.

Second Leeward Leg:
Bjorn and Clarke made good headway downwind, and are now in a position to attack a French team in 7th. All of this time, the Polish team that started by itself at the pin, continued to sail far ahead all by its lonesome, and unhindered by boats behind. The entire fleet has sailed a downwind course to the right side directly at the same bending land barrier. At only 36 minutes into the race, the leading Poles went through the leeward gate and made their short dash towards the finish line to the right. The Canadians finished in eighth position comfortably ahead (by roughly a hundred metres) of the Americans and Swedes who are still locked in battle. The Polish team of Mateusz Kusnierewicz and Dominik Zycki finished the race victorious, in a little under thirty-seven minutes. The Canadians finished the short, intense racing in a little under 38 minutes.

The Penalty:

Montrealer Tyler Bjorn and BC native Richard Clarke were flagged for kinetics. Clarke assumes the penalty was given for rocking the boat, difficult to avoid in waves. Were it not for that foul, they may have been able to strike for the podium. Their impressive finish, tenth overall in the regatta, both qualifies Canada for the 2012 Olympics in London in the Star Class, and Clarke and Bjorn as Canada's representatives. They will certainly be exciting to watch. Their challenge now is to find that last little missing puzzle piece to make that small and most difficult graduation from top ten in the world to top three and the Olympic podium.

Guys, congratulations on a super race from Montreal Sailing.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Clarke & Bjorn Make it to the Medal Round at ISAF World Championship

It must have been a pretty stressful day of racing for Montrealer Tyler Bjorn and his helmsman Richard Clarke but, they have done it! They have made it into the final medal round race to be held Saturday. The weather in Perth was tough with reports citing puffs of breeze and glassy areas during some of the racing. After two races for the day, Bjorn & Clarke held onto 10th overall. Only the top ten teams move on to the final medal round race Saturday. Legendary sailor Robert Scheidt and Bruno Prada of Brazil, the defending World Champions are dominating, in 1st overall. Anything can happen in the medal round format though, so it will be an exciting day tomorrow.

Day's Star racing summary

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Clarke & Bjorn after 8 Races at 2011 ISAF Worlds

photo by Fried Elliot

Richard Clarke and Tyler Bjorn continue to hold onto their top ten position. After 8 races, they remain in 8th overall. Today is a day off. From yesterday, here is the most recent post from Clarke:

Well the trend of one good race and one bad race continued today. We carded a 7 and 19 to sit 8th overall in a real dog fight for placed 5 through 12th. Everyone except the top 4 guys are struggling in the unpredictable winds, on good day can move a team up many places and the reverse is true for a bad day. We seem to be plugging along having OK races and maintaining our position, while the elevator takes our competition up and down the leader board. I talked to someone today who asked if we were just trying to qualify and I told them that I was trying hard to win this thing but that it was proving extremely difficult.

We almost saw Fremantle Doctor conditions in the first race today as winds were in the correct quadrant but a bit lighter. We had an average start that saw us looking over our shoulders a few minutes after the start for a lane out right. After patiently waiting for things to clear out we tacked and headed out to what I hoped was the favoured side. It didn't look all the good early but came together towards the end of the beat as we rounded the first mark 6th. Unfortunately we dropped a few places on the first run but managed to take them back on the second beat and found ourselves in 8th place down the final run. What should have been a straight forward affair turned into a bit of a crap shoot as the wind completely died and tried to fill in from many directions. Luckily we survived the lottery and finished 7th.

In the second race we had the unfortunate privilege of starting between 2 boats that were both over the line at the gun. Luckily we realized our predicament and dropped back far enough not to be called over but our start was severely compromised. Things went from bad to worse as the side we chose on the first beat was not correct and we rounded the first mark in the 30's. A typical Clarke/Bjorn come back saw us close distance on the leaders but we could only catch 12 boats over the course of the race for a 19th.

It will be a good battle Friday (tomorrow is a day off) for the top 10 to see who makes the medal race.

Stay tuned.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Clarke/Bjorn Sailing Team in 8th Overall Thus far in ISAF Worlds

Wow! Star class team Tyler Bjorn and Richard Clarke are having a pretty exciting time at the ISAF World Championship. Most of the countries there are qualifying to compete at the upcoming London Olympics, and individual competitors are vying for selection. That means some extraordinary competition. Montrealer Bjorn and BC sailor Clarke results so far are:

12 6 10 (17) 7 15

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Freaks Frighten Montreal Sailors

One of the highlights of sailing this past summer was the 2011 Shark World Championship hosted by Beaconsfield Yacht Club. Lots of exceptional sailors, including this team, "Freak On A Leash" Whenever they weren't sailing, Jeremy Crowder could be seen skateboarding around the club. I assume the team's name comes from the song "Freak On A Leash" by Korn. So is the mask in keeping with the song's lyric "Sometimes I cannot feel my face", or just Jeremy being "Korny"?

Jeremy Crowder, Connolly Aziz, Steve Mazza from Royal Hamilton YC on Shark #185 placed 8th overall out of the fleet of 54.

Heather Deeks took the pic, and this summer she has an even larger portfolio of great shots!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Clarke/Bjorn Sailing Team make CBC News

Montreal sailor Tyler Bjorn recently appeared on CBC news in a feature on his London 2012 Olympic campaign with team mate Richard Clarke. See the video online here. The pic above is from their website.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Mobility Cup 2011 – Royal Hamilton Yacht Club

Toby Bryant competing in PCYC's latest acquistion, a 2.4mR.

Thanks a bunch Jenn Davey for keeping us up to date on the action in this fleet. - Ralph

The 21st Annual Mobility Cup drew to a close on Friday September 3rd in Hamilton, ON after a week of great winds and fantastic competition.

The event, co-hosted by the Burlington Sailing and Boating Club with the Royal Hamilton Yacht Club, included 5 days of racing for the Martin 16 fleet and the Access Liberties. Over 60 sailors with disabilities from Canada, the US, Australia, the Netherlands, and the UK participated. 

AQVA came out of the event with their strongest performance to date, with the 4 PCYC/AQVA sailors sweeping the top 4 places in Gold Fleet (in fact, after the first day of racing, two AQVA racers were tied for 3rd – meaning 4 AQVA sailors in the top 3!).

Pierre Richard capped off a strong season finishing with 10 points after 8 races to clinch first overall. Team mate Marc Villeneuve was in fact in the lead going into the last day, but Pierre finished the event with two commanding bullets to sneak 2 points ahead on the final scoresheet. After a winning the Mobility Silver Fleet last year, Hafsa Chaar, in her first full season in Gold, took 3rd place while AQVA founder and veteran René Dallaire sipped and puffed his way to 4th, also taking the Sam Sullivan Trophy for top-placing Sip n’ Puff sailor. AQVA did not send any Silver participants this year, but several new Learn to Sail graduates are chomping at the bit for next season!

Off the water, AQVA’s strong support did not go unnoticed. Paula Stone, who once again coordinated the docks, transfers and companions, was awarded the Graham Alvey Memorial Award, given annually to the person who ‘has pushed the boundaries to support, encourage and inspire people with disabilities to participate in sailing’. She received her award to resounding applause from sailors and fellow volunteers alike.

Congratulations also to Matt Palardy, AQVA’s team leader for the event who not only assisted and coached 4 AQVA sailors to an excellent regatta, but also transferred, companioned and encouraged countless more sailors from other clubs as well. To the relief of many sailors, he also came to the rescue more than once when assistive electronics failed or were fussy – we knew your studies in electrical engineering would come in handy for something!

2.4mR North American Championship
Held as a separate event to the Mobility Cup, but at the same time and also at RHYC, was the 2.4mR North Americans. An “open” event – meaning sailors with or without disabilities may participate – the championship drew 16 competitors with a variety of abilities and from a variety of backgrounds, including PCYC’s own Toby Bryant. Sailing AQVA’s newly acquired club 2.4mR Abyssinia, Toby finished a strong 5th on the heels of Canadian and US national team members and Paralympians.
Toby, who also helped the Mobility racers by towing a Martin to the event, said he hopes to learn the 2.4mR better in order to help build the fleet at PCYC and coach AQVA athletes new to the boat. His ongoing help and enthusiasm over the years - and now in this new capacity - is hugely appreciated by the AQVA sailors and fellow volunteers who look forward to the injection of his expertise into our burgeoning 2.4mR program. Thanks Toby!

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Championnat SHARK du CNDM (Québec Open)

Du 27 au 28 Août 2011

Chimère compte rendu - par Nicolas LeMarchand,
(foredeck dans le photo, avec Marion LeMarchand et Peter Rahn)

L'édition, cette année, a été marquée par la venue d'une invitée surprise nommée Iréne. Son arrivée a obligé le comité de course à annuler la journée de dimanche.
Nous avons donc couru samedi quatre manches pleine de rebondissements, de départs plein d'actions, de passages de bouée serrés, de croisements limites mais le tout dans une ambiance assez sportive.  Le plan d'eau généralement avantageux sur la gauche réservait toujours une petite surprise. Les variations de pression et de direction offraient à tous les bords un nouveau chalenge pour tous. Mais les meilleurs étaient souvent en bonne position à la fin.
Nuisance, Crisis et Ketchup, vont vraiment vites et régulièrement au bon endroit. Il reste pour nous, cette saison, nos trois bateaux imbattables, nous terminons donc à la quatrième place.
A bord de Chimère, nous avions un invité de marque Peter de "Stimulus package" qui nous fait partager son expérience du Shark 24. En effet, petits nouveaux dans cette Classe, chaque nouvelle régate est un découverte pour nous. Lors de cette fin de semaine, nous avons ainsi découvert un nouveau club chaleureux, des nouveaux compétiteurs. 
Merci au CNDM pour son accueil chaleureux, son superbe jardin et aussi à l'ensemble des Sharks et, en particulier, ceux du BYC qui nous ont adopté.

Bravo à Nuisance qui fait une très belle saison et remporte le titre de champion du Québec. A la semaine prochaine pour la Longue Distance.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Star 2011 Montreal Open

Much thanks to Brian Cramer for passing on this super report, so we can all keep abreast of the news from an important Montreal one design fleet. I look forward to sailing at CNDM next week, a jewel of the Montreal clubs. - Ralph

Every year for the past 7, Star boats gather at Vaudreuil-sur-le-lac for racing on Lac des Deux-Montagnes.  The special nature of the club, the lake and the local Star Fleet has made the trip one of the good regattas in a summer season.

This past weekend was no exception.

Friday was a perfect day for setting up the boat.  Boats started to arrive at noon with the goal of getting the mast up and some practice time on the lake.  Local Star sailor Philippe Hofer greeted the travelers with an open tool kit, combinations to gates and washrooms etc.  There was a plan to get on the water as soon as crews arrived for some speed training, important set-up for any regatta.

Saturday morning started with a skippers’ meeting on the front lawn of the Club Nautique Deux-Montagnes. Three races are planned for the day with a start time of 10:30 am. Everyone gets to the starting area, but unfortunately the wind disappeared for 30 minutes.  Like magic, the breeze fills in from 210 degrees and the first race sequence begins. 

Sometimes the decision to travel up the port or starboard side involves wind strength and angle.  On this lake, there is a current flowing from the west to east which also must be considered and for race 1 it looked like a port side favoured windward leg.  Most of the competitors recognized this strategy and fought for the pin end.  A couple of tacks up the first leg and the leaders were in the left side of the course.  Rick Shousha went the farthest to the left and was rewarded with a first place rounding.  On the first downwind the pattern of jibing on the shifts began to show its advantages and the leaders gained some big distance on the fleet.  Two more legs with mostly the same pattern and the first race is complete.  Rick hangs on for a fourth place finish, his best of the regatta.

Race two waits for a shift in the windward mark but once started it is a repeat of the first.  Fight for the pin end and protect the left side of the course.   A much bigger bunch up at the first mark but again jibing at the right moment paid big dividends on the first downwind.  Race 2 ends with the leaders enjoying a big lead but Hendershot and Folsetter fight for position 2 and 3. 

Still good winds (8-10kts) so a third race is planned.  As the afternoon progressed the wind shifted to 220 and finally 230 degrees.  That changed the starting strategy as the committee boat became favoured.  Again the fleet recognized the advantage and there was a collection at the right end of the line.  John Draper who was competing in his first Star regatta had a great start and pushed the fleet to the left.  Once he tacked the rest followed and waited patiently for the first shift.  One minute into the last race and a right shift hit the leaders.  Tack on the headers and the first group started to separate from the back markers.   With the breeze starting to shift more to the north the downwind winning formula was to pass on the north side of the course.  Folsetter passed Cramer on the first downwind using the north pressure to his advantage.  Some tacking and covering resulted in Folsetter getting a big lead.  Cramer recognized the advance of third place Hendershot and tacked to the left side to cover.  Both these two were close to the port layline when the wind shifted 30 degrees in their favour.  Folsetter immediately started to race to the left side but arrived on the Cramer/Folsetter line two boat lengths late giving up the lead for the leg and race.

Saturday night dinner was hosted by the Hofer’s at their lakeside summer home.  Very good food with all the competitors and some of their families made it an event highlight. 

Sunday was going to be tricky racing as the forecast was for thunderstorms but the committee planned for two races.

After setting the starting line, it became apparent that the left side was favoured and again a fight for the pin end started with about a minute left.  Rick Shousha, Brian Cramer and Doug Folsetter all positioned near the pin and with 10 seconds left the three powered up and drove to the line.  Within 2 minutes a small left shift signaled the first tack and Cramer gained a small but significant advantage.  Twice he protected the left side first covering Folsetter then Hendershot.  Those two began their own duel as the result of race four was significant in the overall positions.  In the 10 knots of steady breeze the passing lanes were tough and the positions held until the end. There was a dramatic moment on the finish line between Draper and Hofer with a jibe, jibe and twirl maneuver perfectly executed by Draper for the enjoyment of the watchers and with Hofer winning the duel.  At this point overall positions first and second were settled so Cramer and Folsetter left for the dock.

Race 5 repeated the pattern of left side for the first leg and cover the fleet on the downwind.  Two groups separated and Will Hendershot scored his first race win with Philippe Hofer close behind. 

A short award ceremony wound up the regatta.  Special thanks to the Quebec Star Fleet for providing great races on a great summer weekend.

Sail # Skipper Crew Race 1 Race 2 Race 3 Race 4 Race 5 Total
8143 Brian Cramer Rick Burgess 1 1 1 1 DNS 4
8024 Doug Folsetter Chris Danner 2 2 2 2 DNS 8
8361 Will Hendershot Gary Soules 3 5 3 3 1 10
8236 Philippe Hofer Olivier Teisserenc 5 3 5 4 2 14
8401 John Draper Larry Scott 6 4 4 5 3 16
7506 André Marcotte Xavier Marcotte 7 6 6 6 4 22
4 Rick Shousha Stéphane Barbeau 4 7 7 7 5 23

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

11th Annual Coupe du Quebec Martin 16 Regatta

Here is a report from Jen Davey on the recent action sponsored by the AQVA and PCYC. Thanks Jen!

The 11th Annual Coupe du Quebec Martin 16 regatta took place at the Pointe Claire Yacht Club this weekend, hosted by the Association québécoise de voile adapée (AQVA) in conjunction with PCYC. 25 competitors from across eastern Canada and the US joined together for two days of racing in Silver and Gold fleets. 

The weekend kicked off with a special ceremony to launch the newest addition to AQVA’ s fleet of accessible boats: a 2.4mR, the single-handed Paralympic class. The acquisition was made possible through a generous grant from the Canadian Paralympic Committee’s Paralympic Equipment Fund. The boat belonged to Nigist Legesse-Sewnnet, a 2.4mR sailor from the Disabled Sailing Association of Ontario who passed away this spring. Nigist was dearly beloved by many and the boat was christened “Abyssinia”, a nod to her Ethiopian roots, and the name she had chosen for her boat. Abyssinia will be a club boat used to expose developing competitors to the Paralympic class and offer the opportunity to engage in high performance regattas that might not otherwise be within reach of developing racers.

At the end of two often light and shifty days, the final score sheet revealed the tight level of competition currently at play in the east coast Martin fleet. Gold fleet was won by Pierre Richard of AQVA/PCYC, just ahead of Nepean Sailing Club’s Christine Lavallée, with Erick Poirier, also of AQVA/PCYC in 3rd . The top 3 were separated by just 1 point before the drop race added a slightly wider gap of 4 points. Silver was close as well: Brian Cuerrier or Belleville, ON took top place followed by Basil Katsivalis (AQVA/PCYC) and Karell Regnier (Nepean Able Sail), all three within 2 points of each other.

A big thank you to PRO Madelaine Palfreeman and her crew who, as always, provided excellent racing in a variety of conditions. Thanks also to the staff and support from the Pointe Claire Yacht Club and the many AQVA volunteers who made the whole weekend possible.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Sailweek 2011 great fun in PHRF 3

In PHRF III, where the largest competition is taking place, Sailweek's podium placers are:
  1. Ketchup
  2. Encore Une Fois
  3. Nuisance
The PHRF III fleet winners: Ketchup, the Shark skippered by George Stedman. Ketchup is on a roll this year. They took third at the Shark World's last month, also making them the highest Montreal team. Now they have added Sailweek to their 2011 credentials. Hold on though, it may still be too early in the season to pronounce Ketchup as Montreal Sailing's Top Dawg. While it certainly looks like Stedman's #422 is the Dominator, Nuisance (another PCYC Shark) actually beat Ketchup in most of the races it sailed. If Nuisance had not been absent the first day of Sailweek, the BYC Annual Regatta, we might be telling a different story. So, it is still possible that the chest-pumping of Montreal Sailing is not over yet! Indeed, there are other sailors out there who could legitimately hold bragging rights. While the two aforementioned Sharks battled it out, the Tanzer 22, Encore Une Fois, actually sailed to second overall in Sailweek. Now there is a usurper! The Lintons and team aboard Encore Une Fois are having a very, very competitive season thus far. Three other Sharks, also took bullets during Sailweek. Kaos, and Crisis are always in the top ranks, of course. The only other bullet belongs to .... drumroll please... wait for it.... Ambitious! Yes, the boat formerly called Mainsail,  of yours truly, the long suffering backpacker, the cheerful but sometimes bald-faced bum,  the ever-trying... Okay, that's enough. But, Whoo-hoo! Team Ambitious took first in Race #2 of the BYC Annual.

The picture above was taken during a return from a club race. Our boat still had bow numbers from the Shark World Championship, #51. After our bullet during Sailweek, Jin peeled off the 5, and left on the 1. I didn't realize until we returned from a race. I have to admit, I appreciated the generous humour and left the number on.

Photo taken by Francesca Frati.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Two teams at 2011 Lightning Canadian Open

This past weekend must have busy on the highways with lots of boat trailers. Yet another regatta attended by local road warriors was the 2011 Lightning Canadian Open, hosted by Buffalo Canoe Club. It was sailed this past weekend on the eastern end of Lake Erie. BYC sailors did very well:
  • 5th, Jamie Allan, Jay Deakin & Stephanie Boucher
  • 8th, Michael Holly Jr, William Hall & Valerie Tardif-Holly
24 teams sailed 8 races over the two days.

Full results

Congrats all!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Fireballs win at NOD

Tom Bird has sent us this great report on the PCYC Fireball fleet's local road warriors. They have just competed in one of my favourite regattas, the Nepean One Design in  Ottawa. Thanks Tom!

 The Fireball fleet including a 3 boat Pointe-Claire armada consisting of Pierre Carpentier & Tom Bird sailing on Friarballs, Steven Waldie & Nicola Mocchiutti sailing on Pontificate and keen newcomers Ancilla Rompala & Valerie Knight were looking forward to their first sail after countless hours reviving Wildchild.

The 10 boat fleet was treated to an array of shifts, swirls, impossible lifts and devastating headers; all things typical of sailing on the Ottawa River. The temperatures on the water were average and quite comfortable. Saturday featured an imminent threat of rain with mostly light winds. Clearing skies and a more exciting breeze was served up for Sunday’s racing.

The 7th and final race turned into a battle of inches for the lead boats. At the starting signal of the last race, the top three teams were separated by only 0.75 points in the standings (a shocking 0.25 point gap for scores including drops!!).

 When the top half of the fleet rounded the lee mark only seconds apart, it was clear that the regatta would come down to 2 final marks. On the last beat, a slippery lead changed hands often and the boats were even tighter rounding the top mark. Friarballs made it around first to secure the regatta. Pontificate fouled at the mark but managed to get ahead of NSC’s Rocket Science for second overall, despite making penalty turns with the spinnaker up on the last leg.

NOD always marks the beginning of the Fireball’s regatta season and this one’s close finish will be one to remember. Thanks to the organizers and our gracious hosts. Results are available at;

Tom Bird