With a record number of skippers and crews – 450 and counting – the 2015 Van Isle 360 International Yacht Race is ready to set sail.
The 10th edition of the yacht race around Vancouver Island has dropped the second stop of the circumnavigation at French Creek, so after the boats leave Nanaimo on June 6 they will be heading straight to Comox.
Also new this year, the finish line has been moved from the Comox Marina entrance to an area between Chrome Island near the southwest tip of Denman Island and the Vancouver Island shore.
“There should be excellent viewing for boats finishing during the day,” race officials note. “RCMSAR stations 60 and 59 will be available to escort any boats that require assistance to the Comox Harbour. We expect most boats to be parking during darkness.”
With the Comox stopover extended to two days, the Comox Bay Sailing Club has organized an inshore race of approximately three hours on Sunday, June 7.
The Strait Marine In Port Race is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. “The yachts will race around the buoys between Comox Bay and Denman Island,” said CBSC Commodore Andrew Walther.
“This will undoubtedly be a spectacle when 40 yachts provide on and off the water viewers with quality action in close-quarters racing conditions,” Walthers added.
The awards celebrations will start at 4 p.m. in Comox Marina Park, is open to the public, and will consist of the following:
• Fleet welcome by Comox First Nation
• Nanaimo to Comox awards, and Strait Marine In Port Race awards
• Beer garden staffed by Rotary Club of Strathcona
• Reception provided by Plates Eatery and Catering (full meals available from concessions)
• Musical entertainment by Comox Valley’s Luke Blu Guthrie
“We encourage all to come to the marina, check out the action, and participate in the festivities,” Walthers said.
After a night of rest, the fleet will gather June 8 and leave at 9 a.m. for Campbell River. Leg Three on June 9 is Deepwater Bay to Hardwicke Island, Leg Four is June 10 from Hardwicke to Telegraph Cove, Leg Five is June 11 Telegraph Cove to Port Hardy, Leg Six is June 12 Port Hardy to Winter Harbour, Leg Seven is June 14-16 Winter Harbour to Ucluelet, Leg Eight is June 17-18 Ucluelet to Victoria, and Leg Nine is June 19-12 Victoria to the finish line in Nanaimo.
Organizers note the schedule is subject to change. Updates are posted at vanisle360.com
– Van Isle 360 International Yacht Race