Western Weekend Aug 4-6, 2023
CYFYRA Canadian National Championship Regatta July 22-23, 2023
Alberta Y-Flyer Championship Regatta July 1-2, 2023
The Alberta Y Flyer Championships and St. Mary’s Open Regatta was July 1 & 2 at St. Mary’s Sailing Club. The Canada Day weekend was selected because over the past 20 years it was a ‘sure-bet’ for water levels to be at their highest. But this year was different. There was an early melt of a shallow snowpack in mountain headwaters and a hot dry spring. St. Mary Reservoir peaked in mid-June at a paltry 3 metres below full-level and then started to drop by 20 cm/day. Cancellation was considered, but we went ahead as it seemed there’d be just enough water to launch and retrieve boats.
It was windy on July 1. We launched in 18 knots – 3 Y Flyers and a Seaspray. One Y, ‘Poseidon’, capsized and sought the bottom of the lake again, but it’s intrepid skipper and crew prevented that from happening, with some help from the committee boat. Then the rest of us were chased off the lake by rising gusts. An hour later it was clocking 25 knots with 33 knot gusts. That lasted until dark so we parked any notions we had about sailing and enjoyed our excellent club BYO BBQ. Then we watched fireworks arranged by Trina and the lit by Art. A large group gathered at the point to watch the stunning display!
On July 2, we sailed the ‘Around Bird Island Race’ starting in 10 knots and ending 2 hours later in a drifter. Art was the class of the fleet, finishing first in his Laser. He rounded the island in the opposite direction and emerged into better wind! Next across the line was Mike, of Newell Sailing Club, in his Seaspray, but the fast boat’s handicap dropped him back to fourth. Dee and Richard were first Y Flyer, followed closely by club Y, ‘Poseidon’, sailed by our Cat-sailing Commodore Jesse, along with John from NSC. Another club Y Flyer, ‘Franken-Y’ placed third, skipped by MacGregor 28 sailor Stuart, with club secretary Allison crewing. One other club Y was rigged and ready for club members but there were no takers. So, there were 3 local Ys on the water. No other Y Flyer sailors made the trip to St. Mary’s.
Thanks to all who made the weekend of sailing possible. Faith and several helpers were in the kitchen, providing registration muffins and coffee, Saturday evening salads and desserts, Sunday morning Full St. Mary’s Breakfast, and a tasty selection of lunch items for the awards ceremony. Art and Don did race management. Special thanks to the ‘Y Flyer Resurrection Society’ who met Wednesday afternoons for several consecutive weeks to refurbish 3 old club Y Flyers to be seaworthy again.
We snuck the weekend of sailing in by the skin of our teeth. Boats were retrieved from knee-deep mud beyond the ramp on the afternoon of July 2. Unfortunately, that’ll be the last day of the season for organized sailing at St. Mary’s Sailing Club due to the unusually-low water.