Already in its 4th year running, the North American Regatta has again accompanied the re-build-up of a 5.5m fleet in Canada and the USA. Headed by John Lister and Daniel Rossi respectively, personal contacts and hands-on work with boats being purchased and turned from sleeping beauties into racing machines has proven to be the key for success. Smiling faces all around, racing spirit plus joyful social gatherings and specially made crew shirts are all add-on features of this event. Enough to make visitors from across the Atlantic join in.
Before the start
Generously provided with a boat, from the "stables" of Daniel Rossi, this year a German team was able to participate, making it a truly International venue . Others will be welcome for future occasions - the autumn regatta in Midland Bay coming up next. A Canadian team had enjoyed race participation in Cannes, last autumn.
Starting to race
Racing in June 2017 took place again on Midland Bay, a side arm of Georgian Bay, which does form part of Lake Huron. For time counters, all this is just 1,5hrs. NorthWest of Toronto Airport. The races involved mostly 5.5m Classic boats, but also two GRP boats. 5.5 CAN 22 "Nantoria" (Ohlson/Kungsörs) with John Lister & Crew sailed to first place, next in line 5.5 USA 51 "Purple Haze" (Chance/Vator) with Daniel Rossi & Crew, followed by 5.5 Columbia 30 "Summer" (Herbern/Columbia) with Dean Harker & Crew. The visiting crew from Germany took 4th place onboard 5.5 GER 97 "Cloud 9", helmed by Thies Först. 5th place was taken by 5.5 CAN 31 "Summer School", then 5.5 CAN 3 "Jill", 5.5 USA 98 "Ol' Spice" and 5.5 USA 102 "Aeolus".
As important as the racing were the social gatherings, joining for Dinner at the houses of the Harker, Thurley and Wills families. Teh grill was on and those complying with BYOB, had their favourate liquid. To this the traditional Friday Club evening dinner at the MBSC clubhouse was added. Here especially to mention and to thank the honorary work of several MBSC members, forming safety crews, race committee and Jury.
For the German team a special treat brought them up North to a private Island on the Georgian Bay shores. Canada from a phantasy book!
Then it was time to say good-bye, combined with a promise for return. Also on the list is an invitation to crews form Canada and the USA, to be racing in Europe in summertime 2018. Loaner-boats are already being searched for - help out, if you can.
As to Class development in North America, both John and Daniel do have projects running (CAN 77 and USA 75). Also, recently Daniel came across a 5.5m Evolution boat (former BAH 16), which is in need for a bit of TLC. Once done that, she could race-meet with 5.5 USA 85, another Evolution in position for re-awakening. So then, before the question arises ("... what about Modern boats?..."): This can be covered. Daniel Rossi has all the drawings and specifications for a new 5.5m design in his home-office; just go forward and ask him for details. He will be pleased to letting you know, why his design will be performing very well.
The Rossi Design
Thanks to Kaspar for this regatta report and a couple of pictures and to the Rossi family for the rest of the photos.