Wind, Sunshine, More Wind, Swimming, Blood, Broken Gear and Smiles….that sums up the weekend for the 2010 Canadian Championships. We have all gone to Kingston for three day regattas and it is expected that two out of three days will be good wind. This was not the case here where it was a wind all the time. Yes, the first races of each day was 10 knots but all subsequent races brought forth a cheery 15-20 knots.
Driver stamina was the secret weapon for this event where races were won and lost on the beats. There was lots of “Go Lefts”, normal for Kingston, but to everyones surprise there was some gains to be made in the middle of the course. Overall team fitness was also required to make it through the day. For example, we were on the water for seven hours on Saturday and people came home beaten up and had to get out the next day to be slapped down again.
The downwinds were an absolute delight. You know those times in a 505 where you set the kite, the bow comes up, air replaces water under the boat, all rigging eases up and the whole experience settles into a state of absolute perfection? Well many of the downwinds were like that until a bad crash knocks you back to reality. I think it was on the downwind that Clayton James provided sacrificial blood to the waters of Kingston – his gift to Neptune.
It was a regatta of fresh blood. Francois-Xavier Bertrand from Montreal and past owner of two 505s just graduated from Mechanical Engineering school at week before the regatta and came out of for the event after being away for seven years. Clayton James could not resist an invitation from Henry Amthor to come to Kingston and has also been resting on ice for a number of years. Nick Kroeger, a young talented 29er sailor and world sailing traveller was holding Steve Adolph content on the wire in the lead pack. All of these guys would be great hired guys should you need their services – assuming they are not already taken.
And speaking of sailing talent, the Watsons started a new level of 505 sailing were they showed that light teams can truly be up there with the best of them by putting in three top three finishes in breeze. Even with gear failures and two DNCs they still managed a fourth place finish.
Points wise, the regatta was not decided until the very last race. Boyd/Tenhove and Amthor/James were tied going into the last race. It was match racing it’s best. The fleet went one way and the two boats went the other. It was great to see but unfortunately it was all for not because the Boyd/Tenhove boat was OCS and that solved the problem of who would take the event. Amthor/James were the winners taking the Canadian Championships home to America. The ghost of Canada now lives on the walls of Hampton Yacht Club for then next year.
And lastly, it would not be a Kingston Regatta without dinner at the Boyds were the food was wonderful and the beer flowed freely. Many thanks to the Boyds for dealing with the details of the organization.
Fun for all and to the rest of the 505 community, we wished you were there.
President of 505 Canada
For results, see http://www.cork.org/results2010/OFF/505tbl.htm