UBC Finishes 4th at National Championships

Richard Minielly (’20), Matt Goguen (’20), Natalie Benoit (’20), Kayden Polachek (’22) and Eric Lyall (’21) attended the CICSA National Championships in Kingston, Ontario ON from October 26-27. 12 teams from across the country were in attendance, racing 420’s out of the Royal Military College.

Day 1 saw light winds from the south. A full rotation was completed in the morning. Eric and Nat finished the day with a win in race 4, sneaking across the line just ahead of RMC and McGill in near drifter conditions. UBC finished the day in 5th spot.

Day 2 saw a mixed bag of conditions.  A storm was in the forecast, but no one really knew when it would show up. A full rotation was completed for A and B fleet in light & medium breeze. As soon as the first full rotation ended, it became clear that the storm had arrived. Richard and Matt launched in a rapidly building southerly and pouring rain. By the time their race started, the wind was 25 knots. Only a handful of sailors were able to start, let alone finish the race. UBC was able to survive and stay (mostly) upright, finishing an impressive 3rd among a sea of carnage. Racing was called off immediately after the race finished.

At this point, myself, Kayden and Nat were onshore watching the fleet attempt to sail in. Winds were now gusting 30+ knots. McGill and two other boats tried to sail in first. All 3 of them nearly made it into the bay before being simultaneously wiped out by a 35-knot puff. Lake Ontario was now a sea of white- some of it from whitecaps, and some of it from upside-down boats. Safety boats from RMC quickly launched to help sailors make it back to shore.

UBC ended up finishing tied for 4th overall, with McGill winning the national title. Only 5 races for the A and B fleet were completed due to variable wind conditions. The team then travelled back to Toronto for some well-earned ramen and bubble tea before flying out Monday morning.

We would like to thank RMC for hosting the regatta and safely bringing sailors back to shore after the final race. We are looking forward to coming back and improving next year!

UBC’s CICSA Nationals Team