The PS Hakuna Matata (left) and Tantivy II approach the finish line

Lasqueti regatta hosts lots of yachts

Nanaimo skippers take top spots in Schooner Cove Yacht Club race around island

Skipper Bill Allen of the Nanaimo Yacht Club piloted Lawn Dart to the overall title as Schooner Cove Yacht Club staged its annual Around Lasqueti Island Regatta on June 3-5.

The event drew 150 sailors and 31 craft representing eight yacht clubs, plus the local fleet.

An increase in visiting crews from Vancouver and Victoria helped create the large field, said Andrew Rycroft, regatta planning chair.

“This increase in racers from other clubs is a testament to the popularity of the SCYC regatta,” said Rycroft.  “We have a great course around Lasqueti Island, a high level of competition, and a wonderful venue at Fairwinds Marina. Being part of the Vancouver Island Race Series also helps draw racers to this regatta.”

Action heated up when twenty-five boats crowded the line for the first start.

“It’s really a spectacle when  boats are vying for the best position on the line,” said Rycroft. “There are a lot of fast tacks and other manoeuvers in the five minutes leading up to the starting horn.”

The five fastest boats, including two fifty-foot sailboats, started one hour later. Winds held for the morning then the fleet spent an hour in the doldrums at the top of Lasqueti, waiting for afternoon winds to pick up for the spinnaker run back to the finish line.

Racers were split into four divisions based on their PHRF-NW handicap, which adjusts a boat’s elapsed time based on the distance of the course. Peter Milne, Regatta Chair, presented awards to first, second and third place finishers in each of the four divisions.

The first boat over the finish line, Allen’s Lawn Dart, was the fastest on corrected time, winner of Division One and also the overall winner of the regatta.

NYC skippers also captured first place in Division Two and Three. Competition was stiff in Division Four, where only 16 seconds separated the second- and third-place finishers after nine hours of racing. Freewind, skippered by  Richard Hudson, was the highest placing SCYC boat, taking second place in division four.

More than 40 club members were involved in the planning and staging of the regatta.

“We received tremendous support from our sponsors, and that makes it possible for SCYC to stage one of the best regattas on Vancouver Island” said Milne. “From the Friday night barbecue, where we flipped over 200 burgers, to the awards presentation on Sunday, there was a great atmosphere and vibrancy.”

See results in Scoreboard, page A41.

—Submitted by SCYC

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