The Commodore’s Cup and Santana 525 Nationals August, 18th-20th, 2017!

by Marc Noel

Although I was not fortunate enough to participate in the entire 2017 Okanagan Sail Week, my adventure this year began with the Wednesday night race at the Kelowna Yacht Club.  We were very lucky to get a solid night of breeze with gusts over 20 knots throughout the entire evening.  Several out of town boats joined in the action, and it is always refreshing to be able to compete against some new blood.

Kelowna Yacht Club’s Kent Hardisty organizing the Fleets for the 71st Commodore’s Cup Regatta and Santana 525 Nationals

Thursday night was the 1st annual Jack and Jill double handed race.  This race caped off the very popular single hand racing series.  My hat goes off to Brad Hallam who brought this new racing series forward for 2017.  It’s this type of fresh thinking that is much needed in our sport.

The 71st annual Commodores Cup was a huge success this year.  After a very lively “Rockin’ The Dock Party” on Friday night, organized by Danny Foster, we enjoyed 2 solid days of racing in conditions ranging from 3 to 15 knots.

Sponsors Evolution Sails‘ Jayson Serving up Oysters at the “Rockin’ The Dock Party”

My primary focus has been on watching our local racing program develop over the last 10 years.  We have seen steady improvements being made to the quality of our regattas in the Okanagan.  Thanks to several recent high level events hosted locally, we have been able to take away great knowledge and practices to apply to our own long standing regattas. has very recently been adopted, much to our sailors benefit.  Not only does this streamline the registration process, but we can actually see who has registered to compete before the event.  This is a huge step forward and one I hope we do not retreat from.  The next step in this evolution is to move from our current Sailwave based scoring software to a fully online version supported within yachtscoring.  This will allow for nearly instantaneous results posting and will be easier for a wider audience to view.

Santana 525s Holy Doodle and Mystique’s Spinnaker run

Kent Hardisty did a bang up job with his race committee this year.  The courses were clearly defined and the RC resisted the temptation to start racing before the breeze had truly filled in.  I was very happy to see the use of an offset mark at the top end.  This helps eliminate the usual conflict between a boat gybesetting and one approaching the top mark on the port tack layline.  The use of VHF radio is also a massive step forward in my opinion.  It’s use makes the check-in process very easy, and is of great value to keep the entire fleet advised of starting sequences and courses without the need for a close sail-by the Race Committee boat within the starting box.  Courtesy over early callouts were also very handy to minimize confusion when the dreaded X flag was flown.

I am very proud of our sailing community for banding together once again and throwing what was by all accounts a very successful 2017 Okanagan Sail Week.  Let’s help spread the word, continue to refine, and improve our format for 2018.


THANK YOU to our Sponsors: Evolution Sails VancouverBoundary Brewing CompanyDockside Marine CentreOkanagan Yacht ToursRE/MAX of Western Canada, Smart Move Youth Sailing Initiatives, Nautical Sailing Services (Alan Christopher Barnes) for making this event happen!

Results For the 71st Commodore’s Cup Regatta and the Santana 525 Nationals are here >>>  Kelowna Yacht Club Regatta Page

>>>The 71st Commodore’s Cup Facebook Photo Gallery

Razzle Dazzle and Team with Al Barnes on Helm take 1st Place in the 2017 Santana 525 Nationals

Shadowfax and Team with Danny Foster on Helm Take 1st Place in Fleet – 1 and the Overall for the 71st Commodore’s Cup Regatta

Pentameter’s helm,  John Sharples and Team take 1st Place in Fleet – 2  for Commodores Cup