49er Canada:

The webpage for the 2016 49e NA Champs in Newport is now live! NOR is up and Registration is open! Early bird registration ends July 31st so, be sure to register asap.

See you there!


I hope that everyone is doing well. As most of you know by now, the men’s 49er will be changing sails after the Rio 2016 Olympics. The changes, however, are quite minor:

  • Jib essentially remains unchanged
  • Mainsail shape remains the same, but will have more luff reinforcements to handle vang / cunno loads, and will have a slightly different look
  • Spinnakers are flattening out and becoming 1.7m2 smaller – a modern shape given that our spinnaker design is 20+ years old (but you would probably not be able to tell the difference)

Going forward for all racing in North America (except for ISAF World Cup and World Gold Fleet racing), ALL previous generations of sails are legal (so come out and race no matter what!).

The new sails will be class legal some time after September 1st – we will mirror the international class, meaning that once the new rules are approved by ISAF then we can race with the new sails. So all events up to and including North Americans in Newport will be raced with the pre 2016 sails.

Pitch Pole is ordering some sails for delivery to Newport North Americans (Aug 26 – 28) in limited quantities. Therefore, if you want the new sails delivered to you at Newport or just after, please email me ASAP!

Thanks and hope to hear back from you soon.


Here are the events for the Grand Prix this summer:

Ice Breakers at TS&CC, Toronto – May 20-21
RCYC Skiff, Toronto – June 13-14
Canadians Championship at KYC, Kingston – July 30-Aug 1
CORK, Kingston – August 19-22
North American Championship, Newport – Aug 26-28
US Nationals at Oakcliff Sailing Center, NY – Sept 16-18

Mark your calendars!

Here are your regatta dates and links for winter 2016:

Mid Winters – January 16 to 18 – Regatta Park, Miami

ISAF World Cup – January 23 to 30 – Regatta Park, Miami

World Championships – February 7 to 14 – CCSC, Clearwater

Mark your calendars today!

2016 49er.ca Boat Grant Program

With the aim of bringing younger sailors into the Canadian 49er class, Pitch Pole Skiff Products (aka 49er.ca) will be providing charter boats to young sailors interested in sailing the Olympic class 49er or 49erFX skiff. The charter boats will be a complete 49er or 49erFX with dolly, a carbon mast and ready to race for a period of one year. This is a perfect opportunity for young Laser, C420 or 29er sailors, both male and female, looking to make the jump into the exciting 49er or 49erFX class!

Here are the details of the program:
• 49er or 49erFX Complete including dolly and top cover, ready to sail
• Carbon mast and current sails
• One year charter period: February 15th, 2016 to February 14th, 2017
• Pickup and drop-off in Montreal, QC
• For athletes 21 years old and younger
• Cost $2,000 per year
• Preference will be given to the 49erFX applications

In order to qualify for the charter program, the athletes must agree to the following terms:

• The athletes must be a team of two, willing to sail together for at least one year.
• The athletes should be part of a National, Provincial or club training program.
• During the charter period the athletes are expected to train and race regularly in the Canadian and North American circuits. Additionally, the athletes are free to bring the boats down to Florida to train or participate in the Miami World Cup.
• If anything breaks on the boat, the athletes are expected to repair / replace it (it is their own boat for 1 year).
• The boat shall be returned in original condition, less wear & tear
• The athletes shall attend all 49er.ca Grand Prix events
• The athletes will provide regular photo and written reports to the class ass’n

Interested athletes should complete their application and return it to the Canadian 49er Class Association President for consideration. Your application should include:
• Outline schedule for 2016 season
• Sailing resume
• Curriculum vitae
• Head shots and bio
• Short cover letter, outlining their qualifications for the program

Applications shall be submitted by email to Arielle Morgan (president@49er.ca) on or before Friday, December 11th, 2015. A decision on the selected athletes will subsequently be made by December 18th, 2015 and all parties will be notified. If you need more information on the program, please contact the undersigned.

Thanks and hope to see the young-guns out there!

Trevor Parekh
Pitch Pole Skiff Products Inc.

The 49er and 49erFX Canadian Class meeting will be Sunday, August 16th at Portsmouth Olympic Harbour in Kingston after racing. Meeting will either be in the press lounge or in the boat park.

Topics to be discussed are:
1. Class dues – $5 per person payable in cash or interac transfer to president@49er.ca
2. Quick international fleet hot topics update (not for discussion- just information)
- Fleet size
- Tightening up measurement
- Equal rights for crews on ISAF rankings
- New foils
- Mast track feeders
- Join the Int class FB page
3. Fall events
- There are enough boats around for a good regatta
- Kingston (fall CORK?), Halifax, American Yacht Club High Performance Dinghy Open
4. Grand Prix Schedule for next summer
5. Class development
- What can we do to grow the class in numbers and attract strong youth sailors
6. Class leadership election
- Positions: President, Vice-president, VP Marketing
- Interested in helping develop the class?  Email me to learn more about the responsibilities the roles
If you have any topics you would like to add please let me know.
See you there!

Over three EPIC days of classic Kingston thermal breezes, Champions were crowned for the 49er and 49erFX Canadian Championships. Kingston served up champagne conditions, and the sailors capitalized:

The top three are:
1. Marc Farmer / Trevor Parekh (RStLYC)
2. David Mori / Justin Barnes (RCYC)
3. John / Arthur Ferguson (RCYC)

1. Erin Rafuse / Dannie Boyd (RNSYS) – defending champions!
2. Arielle Morgan / Heather Myatt (RStLYC)
3. Emily Dellenbaugh / Liz Barry (RYC)

Full results here

Photo credits: Luka Bartulovic

The ‘Batmobile’ of sailing, with its sleek wing design and extreme speed, appeared for the first time on the Olympic stage at the 2000 Sydney Games. The Men’s double-handed high performance skiff, the 49er, has grown immensely popular over the years, inspiring the addition of the women’s skiff for inclusion in 2016. The boat uses a double trapeze, with wings and the hull sitting low to the water, displaying the raw essence of speed and athleticism while in race mode.

While the men’s 49er has yet to make it’s first appearance on to the Pan Am stage, the sister boat, the 49erFX will make it’s skiff debut as the 10th sailing medal at Pan Am’s this coming July. The FX consists of the same hull design, including wings and foils, however the rig and sails were re-designed to power a lighter crew, the women’s skiff.

Erin Rafuse and Danielle Boyd will be the only two Canadian sailors to compete in the 49erFX class at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games. Rafuse, a 26-year old skipper from Halifax, and Boyd, a 25-year old crew from Kingston, are using Toronto 2015 as a stepping stone towards their ultimate goal: qualifying for Rio 2016.

The pair similarly started sailing at a young age, both being provoked by their fathers, who were heavily involved in the sport. In fact, Danielle’s father, Jeff Boyd, has competed in many Pan Am Trials. His Lightning team competed at the 1979 Pan Am Games, which he unfortunately missed out on due to illness. After sitting on the fence about competing in the Toronto 2015 trials, he decided, with a heavy heart, that “it just might be time to hang it up,” says Boyd. “Helping reach this decision is certainly easier knowing that our family will be well-represented. (Danielle and Erin) qualified in the 49erFX class and for them it might just be the start of their Pan Am story.

Rafuse and Boyd sailed competitively while simultaneously pursuing psychology degrees, Boyd at Dalhousie University, and Rafuse at Carleton University. Perhaps the similarities between the two caused them to gravitate towards each other, as the pair sought each other out in early 2013. They were both looking to abandon their solo classes to begin an Olympic campaign in the newly adopted Olympic event: the 49erFX. It was a natural fit.

Unlike the complexity of the sport, Rafuse and Boyd’s daily routines are simple: eat, sleep, sail. The duo’s intense training regime has allowed them to win a national title, as well as claim 16th at the most recent World Cup in France. With the very focused Pan Am fleets of only 6 boats, Rafuse and Boyd have set themselves up nicely for a potential medal finish at Toronto 2015.

The 49er class has revolutionized sailing from a fan & media-friendly perspective in the last four years, being the first to trial theater-style racing at world cup sailing events. This form of racing includes shorter courses closer to shore to provide fans and broadcast media with a live experience displaying the intensity and skill of 49er sailing. Sponsorship and broadcast rights have been a constant struggle for the international federation due to the inaccessibility of the sport on the field of play. The skiff class have been very proactive in engaging their sport with the fans, strapping go-pro cameras on the boats for live tracking, live broadcasting and commentary.

The Pan Am sailing events will be held on several race courses on Lake Ontario, including a downtown course on Toronto Harbour in the shadow of the CN Tower. The FX is scheduled to compete starting on July 12th with medal races taking place July 18 & 19. See you there!

Story originally appeared on http://www.sailing.ca/49erfx-debut-at-toronto-2015-p198232

The NOR as been posted and registration is open for the 2015 49er and 49erFX Canadian Championships.

The regatta is July 31st to August 2nd. Early registration ends on July 10th with a $75 late penalty so be sure to register by then!

Register & download NOR here.

Please not that you must be a member of the 49er and 49erFX Canadian Class association to participate in the event. The class dues are $5 per person and can be payed at the regatta check-in in cash.

The Nepean Sailing Club hosted the annual Ottawa Skiff Grand Prix this past weekend, June 6th and 7th. The 49er fleet consisted of four 49erFX, and one 49er. Ottawa served up a classic mix of patchy, and shifty breeze. The conditions demanded rapid gear changes, and attention outside of the boat. The first day of racing started off with a two-boat start for the fleet as it was a longer sail out to the race course than anticipated. Five races were run on Saturday, and three on Sunday. Will Jones and Evan DePaul, from Hamilton and sailing out of Kingston, managed to stay ahead of everyone with consistent finishes.