Monday, July 7, 2014

Vic-Maui Race Preview

Vic Maui Race poster (Victoria, British Columbia, Canada)- Co-hosted by the Royal Vancouver Yacht Club and the Lahaina Yacht Club, the Vic-Maui International Yacht Race, the pinnacle of Pacific Northwest ocean racing, covers a distance on the rhumbline of 2,308 nautical miles.  The Vic-Maui race was first contested in 1965 and has been sailed every two years since 1968.  The start venue is Victoria, BC, on Canada's West Coast, where pre-start preparations are completed in the picturesque Inner Harbour.

The fleet starts just outside the harbour, sails out of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, leaves Cape Flattery on Washington's Olympic Peninsula to port, and heads across the Northeast Pacific Ocean.  Boats aim to sail around the North Pacific High and into the Trade Winds for the sub-tropical run to Hawaii.  Days and nights at sea pass with sightings of whales, dolphins and albatross, under spectacular sunrises, sunsets, and brilliant starry nights.  The finish venue is Lahaina, Maui, the former royal capital of the Hawaiian Islands.  As each boat crosses the finish line, the boat and crew are warmly welcomed in the Hawaiian tradition, after which the crew, family and friends enjoy a stay on Maui and attend a festive awards banquet.

J/160 JAM sailing Vic-Maui Race to HawaiiSimilar to the Pacific Cup, the starting date range for the fleets is from July 3rd to 7th (last are the big boats and multihulls).  Most boats are expected to finish by July 22nd to 23rd.

The lone J/Team in the race is John McPhail's J/160 JAM from Gig Harbor Yacht Club on Fox Island, WA.  JAM is a veteran of 14 Swiftsures, two Pacific Cups and the 2004 Vic-Maui race. The likelihood that she may be a “first to finish” in the keelboat division is pretty good.  In the last edition in 2012, the J/145 DOUBLE TAKE was first to finish— will JAM match that accomplishment?  Time will tell.  For more Vic-Maui Race sailing information