March celebrates the spring equinox marking the beginning of spring sailing, well at least in parts of the country. While some Canadian provinces continue to dig out from the trenches of winter, the warmer southern climates continue to offer exceptional conditions for all our Canadian sailors.
The Lightning class kicked off the month in with the Deep South Regatta in Savannah Georgia where Pan Am Games Bronze medalist Larry MacDonald took second place with crew members Jody Starck and Ian Jones.
Canadian Rob Butler and his Touch2Play crew swept the overall J70 open series clinching the title from the 55 boat fleet. Rob and Sandy Butler were also recognized last year for their top Canadian performance in Melges 20.
Debbie Kirkby won the Fireball Midwinter Championships at the Davis Island Yacht Club in Tampa, Florida.
Brad Boston, Sailor of the Month this time last year, was busy at it again at the Bacardi Miami Sailing Week placing second overall in the Viper 640. Brad sailed the Soling for Canada at the 1996 and 2000 Olympics with fellow talented sailor Bill Abbott.
Youth sailors flocked to their midwinter events for Youth World qualification opportunities. Ian Elliot (RVicYC/CYC) was top Canadian in the Laser fleet while Graham Harney (RVYC) placed fourth overall and top Canadian, securing his spot on the Canadian Youth World Team.
After winning the Sail Canada Youth Sailing Championships last summer, 29er brothers Ryan and Andrew Wood (RVYC) went on to put up another impressive performance at the 29er MidWinters West, placing third and securing the spot on the Canadian Youth World Team. Ryan and Andrew proved their relentless work ethic is paying off, beating top level international teams and laying down bullets towards the end of their event. BC Provincial coach Kevin Black is 'thrilled by their progress as they continue to develop quickly at such a young age'. The BC 29er program currently have 11 boats sailing four days a week with an expected rise this summer to 15 boats.
As young models of dedication, hard work and success, Sail Canada is pleased to award the Sailor of the Month Award, Ryan and Andrew Wood. We look forward to following their progress over the next several years! Sail Canada’s Sailor of the Month award acknowledges sailing achievements by Canadians involved or associated with the sport in all its forms. Sail Canada encourages the submission of noteworthy Canadian sailing activities to firstname.lastname@example.org. Sail Canada