September 14, 2022
Will Keilty is Canada’s youngest ever National Champion. Last weekend he won the 2022 Optimist Dinghy Canadian Championships at Lunenburg Yacht Club held August 22-26. At just 11 years old, and on the final race ending four days of racing, he pulled ahead of 15-year-old RNSYS sailors Ethan Thompson (2nd) and Andi Kinnear (3rd) and 130 competitors in championship and green fleet to win this year’s title. Past notable national Opti champions are Sarah Douglas (2007), Justin Vittecoq (2011, 2012), Noah Adler (2017, 2018) and Thomas Desrochers (2019).
The RNSYS Opti Race Team, coached by Maru Ferrario and Jackson Macaulay, also won the National Team Racing title this year. Team West Vancouver Yacht Club beat RNSYS in the round robin earning themselves a bye to the finals. It came down to a rematch in the finals with RNSYS’s Team Captain Ethan Thompson (Age 15), Andi Kinnear (Age 15), Kai Luther (Age 13) and Will Keilty (Age 11) successfully winning the best two out of three final team race matches to win the 2022 national team racing title.
The COCs are held every year, normally on the 3rd week of August. The event rotates between a West, Central and East location. Due to Covid, the events in 2020 and 2021 that were supposed to be held at Chester Yacht Club in Nova Scotia were postponed. This event consists of a Fleet Racing Championship and a Team Racing Championship, and it serves as the only qualifier event for the Canadian sailors to the IODA Worlds, IODA Europeans, IODA North Americans and IODA South Americans.
The COCs will be held Aug 20-26, 2023 at West Vancouver Yacht Club.