Inaugural J/105 Ontario Women’s Championship

The J/105 Class has a strong presence in Toronto, and as a boat well suited for all shapes and sizes, local fleet sailors launched the inaugural J/105 Ontario Women’s Championship to lower the barriers to women racing in the fleet. On August 21 the strength of women’s sailing was on full display in at the Royal Canadian Yacht Club on Lake Ontario, Canada. With the goal to encourage and welcome women sailors at every level, the result was twelve J/105 boats and 96 competitors ranging from local club sailors to Olympians and ages that ranged from 15 to 70 years. As a "Regatta for Women by Women", Felicity Rodness was the Regatta Chair, Kathy Pask as the Regatta J/105 Organizer, Anne Sanderson as Race Committee, and Lynne Beale as the Jury. On the day of the event, what looked like a no-wind day turned into champagne sailing and very tight competitive racing with boats finishing within seconds of each other in a total of four races. Additionally, the racing had the one of the largest spectator fleets cheering from the sidelines. Each race saw a different winner and only nine points separated first to sixth place. In the end, Team WOMandate skippered by Sarah Douglas (just back from a 6th place finish at the Tokyo Olympics) and team Jenny Farrand, Mariah Millen, Ingrid Merry, Emily Merry, Ali Ten Hove, and Mickey McLaughlin won the last race for the overall win. WOMandate edged out Team Hey Jude with Karen McRae skippering a team with Charlotte de Heinrich, Laura Chalmers, Martha Henderson, Charlotte Scythes, Stephanie Hardes, and Janine Clark in a tie breaker. Team Sonic Boom, made up of team members Emily Sale, Brownyn Richardson, Joanne Prokop, Allison Boyd, Michelle Skutelsky, Kira Fulford, and skipper Jen Paterson (Provan) finished third. Once racing was finished, the competitors transformed themselves from sweat and grit to glitz and glamour at the "Tactics to Tiara" sit-down dinner with a spectacular Island sunset. The success of every women sailor was celebrated from team biographies to team awards and each crew being personally introduced. Results click here.

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