This year the Swiftsure International Yacht Race is making an effort to encourage the entry of “classic yachts”. These boats probably don’t qualify as classic yachts but the Strait looks tame and the mountains lovely.

The Swiftsure International Yacht Race is no ordinary yacht race; it’s a festival of four different race courses with excitement and camaraderie that draws as many as 200 of the Pacific Northwest’s sailboats and an international audience of thousands to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. 2013 will see the Royal Victoria Yacht Club (RVYC) host the 70th Swiftsure International Yacht Race from May 23 to 27, 2013. This year’s ‘canvas to carbon’ theme celebrates the incredible change in technology that has occurred throughout the race’s lifetime.

Although the older ‘classicsailboats have always been welcomed with open arms to enter Swiftsure, this year we are making a special welcome and appeal to owners and skippers of classic yachts to enter one of the races and show off their contribution to preserving our sailing history.. We hope to have many boats, old and new, to make this a truly classic event.

Your entry fee includes two nights free moorage before the race and one night after the race. The Inshore Classic Race will be of particular interest to those not set up for overnight racing or just interested in joining the fun. Boats without a PHRF handicap will be provided one for the race. You don’t need to fly a spinnaker if you don’t wish to as there will be a no flying sails division.

Thursday, May 23rd: Free moorage for racers.
From 8:00 pm to 11:00 pm you can enjoy rhythm and blues by
The Midnights” at the Swiftsure Centre, which will be serving beer, wine, and rum. No cover charge.

Friday, May 24th: Free moorage for racers.
Most of the boats will have arrived at the Inner Harbour. HMCS ORIOLE (launched in 1921), SV MARTHA (launched in 1907), and Westerly (a Santa Cruz 70) will be open for visitors during the afternoon. Come and compare the old and the new. This will be a wonderful time to bring family and guests downtown for the afternoon and an evening dinner and a tour of the docks at sunset on a warm May evening. From 8:00 pm to 11:00 pm dance to good vibrations by
“Mid Life Crisis” at the Swiftsure Centre. No cover charge.

Saturday, May 23rd: Race Day!
8:50 am – Race sequence starts.
9:00 am – The first of five race starts!

After the Inshore Classic Race there is free moorage for the Racers at Royal Victoria Yacht Club where the finish will occur, as well as a BBQ and music for dancing.

8:00 am – Before the races begin Saturday morning there will be a Pancake Breakfast for spectators at Clover Point presented by the Central Saanich Lions Club. There will be lots of photo opportunities along the waterfront during the Inshore Classics Race as the boats jockey for position between the Ogden Point breakwater and Brotchie Ledge. Be sure to watch overhead as the Royal Canadian Air Force performs a safety demonstration in honor of the 70th edition of Swiftsure.

Please put Swiftsure on your calendar this year. Come out and enjoy the premier yacht race in the Pacific Northwest.