bitHeads Ottawa Skiff Grand Prix
June 3rd and 4th 2006
(Optional Training Event June 2nd)
Nepean Sailing Club
What´s with all the hot skiffs in Ottawa, Ontario? You must be talking about the annual Skiff Grand Prix, an event that saw 40 boats in only its second year. Talk about sailing porn in the Nation´s Capital! What´ll it be like this year when the carbon converges on Nepean Sailing Club for the June 2-4 2006 clash?
It all started with a solitary Laser 5000 rippin´ up the lake. Three years later and we have what is arguably the fastest growing skiff fleet in North America with 20 boats, and climbing. So what do you do with that many adrenalin junkies why have a big regatta of course?
This is a race what you brung event. 5 boats gets you one design status. The big fleets will be the I-14 new rules and I-14 penultimate, but following last years turnout, there should be more than a gaggle of Vectors, 29ers, 49ers and yes, we´ve even shared the love with the International Canoes and race cats, cause well, they´ re kinda like skiffs! If you don´t have the numbers for One-Design, you get mashed into a Portsmouth Yardstick fleet. Why? Because the sponsor donated prizes are so good we want everyone to have a crack at em.
So is there anything else? I´d be lying if I said there´d be no party(s) with this gang. NSC is a relaxed club that sports an awesome balcony overlooking Lake Deschenes, and although shocking to many, it has a near endless supply of draft, wine and other pain killers as well as a kitchen that is not only affordable, it respects the gastronomic requirements for the morning after the night before. On- site camping or any manner of hovels are available to keep you comfy at night.
So what of the sailing? There is an excellent dry launch facility consisting of dual ramps leading to either side of a large floating T dock, all times 2. The racing is set close off the club with plenty of vantage points both at the club and throughout the surrounding parks. The wind is usually downriver with reasonable shifts. We cannot promise it´ll blow the dog off the chain, but during the day it´s usually trapeze weather. The venue will be an optional formal training day on Friday (yup, coaches, video, bullhorns; the whole enchilada). This is followed Saturday and Sunday by as many races as we can cram in without going insane or too badly interfering with evening recreation.
Bring the whole family, Ottawa has loads of activities like miles of bike trails, kayaking and roller blading, hiking and even a treetop zipline ride in Gatineau Park. For Urban warriors, there is the Byward Market, Parliament Building tours, canal boat rides, not to mention numerous National museums.