17 Sailors Compete in Annual Cascadia Cup Regatta

This past weekend, October 7-8, UBC Thunderbirds Sailing Sport Club descended on Seattle en masse for the annual Cascadia Cup Regatta. With 17 sailors and Coach MP Alary in attendance, this will likely be the largest UBC attendance at a regatta this academic year. The regatta had 21 gold fleet varsity boats and 21 Junior Varsity and high school boats on the starting line. This made for some crowded start lines and mark roundings, but gave the team great experience. The team drove down Friday night, as always participating in the ritualistic stop at Boomer’s Drive In in Bellingham. Special thanks go out to Eric and Stephanie Kristen, parents of sophomore Mary Kristen (’20), for housing the entire team and preparing an amazing pre-race breakfast each day.


Two boats were driven down to Seattle for the event, requiring assembly on Saturday morning


Saturday was a day of shifting winds and changing weather, with winds ranging from 0-12 knts and periods of sun and pouring rain. All four UBC boats took to the water, with two boats racing in the Varsity fleet and two in Junior Varsity. While there were 21 boats in each start, official scores reflect only the college teams, making each fleet seven boats on the score sheet. The wind started out at 5knts with the weather slightly overcast, and two races were run in the challenging conditions. As ‘B’ fleet took to the water for the first time, the wind switched to a strong northerly, bringing with in torrential rain. The wind died off quickly but two more races were run in the new northerly breeze. With a total of 4 races completed, racing was called for the day around 4pm.



Sidney, the dog of coach MP, became the team’s unofficial mascot for the weekend


On Sunday, the wind was even less predictable, and with the 3pm deadline looming there was pressure on the race committee to get as many races off as possible. ‘A’ fleet headed out for the 10am start in little to no breeze and were postponed on the water until a very slight northerly filled in. By 12pm, two short races had been completed and it was time for ‘B’ fleet to hit the water. After getting one race off, the fleet drifted around the committee before finally getting the second race off just after 2pm. Back on the dock by 2:30, the team then packed their boats up and headed on their way, with many of the team members enjoying a Thanksgiving dinner on Bainbridge Island with the Goguen family [Matt Goguen (’19)] while a few headed back to Canada.



The final scores for this promotional regatta saw UBC take 4 and 6 out of 7 in each fleet. This was the first UBC regatta for many attending sailors including Natalie Benoit (’20), Aidan Chiu (’21), Julian Deggan (’18), Jenny Dinwoodie (Exchange), El Hawkins (’19), and Josh Renault (’21),. These rookie college sailors had great showings at their first event in the North American collegiate format and were joined by returning sailors Jonah Cadieux-Johnson (’19), Andrew Futcher (’20), Matt Goguen (’19), Joseph Gustafson (’18), Elmeri Hakkinen (’18), Margaret Joba-Woodruff (’20), Mary Kristen (’20), Richard Minielly (’20), Laura Stewart (’18), Gabby Savage (’18), and Molly Voltz (’20). Full scores are available here for Gold Fleet and here for Silver Fleet. The team had a hugely fun weekend and would like to thank University of Washington for hosting the event and would also like to congratulate them on their win.


Above all else, the regatta was a bonding experience for the team. Shown above are Mary Kristen (’20), Natalie Benoit (’20), and Molly Voltz (’20) [left to right].


Article by Richard Minielly