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Susan Hood Trophy RaceThe Susan Hood Race kicked off last Friday night with quite a bang, if you count the sound of signs being blown over by the wind. The racers were greeted with heavy winds and rain and with the potential for more storms over the next 24 hours.

The Susan Hood is an annual race held by the Port Credit Yacht Club that covers 73 nautical miles of the western part of Lake Ontario. The race begins at 8pm and boats race from Port Credit to Burlington, then across the lake to Niagara and then back to the starting point. Although usually extremely cold, this race is considered an essential practice for anyone considering entering in the Lake Ontario 300 Race. The Lake Ontario 300, circumnavigates 300 nautical miles and it is considered one of the premiere races on the Lakes. This event will be held on July 13th also hosted by the Port Credit Yacht Club.

This year’s Susan Hood had a surge in participants with nearly 100 boats competing for the title. The race has grown enormously since its first inception 58 years ago where there were only 25 boats that raced a similar course to Port Dalhousie.

For the majority of participants, this year’s race was exceptional. Strong winds for the upwind start to Burlington followed by two tight reaches on the next two legs of the course. Those who were able to keep their spinnakers flying were able to make ground on other boats. The race didn’t end with the same note; most boats had to finish the last few miles with little to no wind. Small price to pay for a great night of sailing.

For results go to Yacht Scoring:
www.yachtscoring.com/event_results_cumulative.cfm?eID=766

Ron Bianaci

Picture 1: Susan Hood and Darren Gornall, Chairman of Lake Ontario Offshore Racing, with the Trophy
Picture 2: Weatherman, Ron Bianchi, presenting an overview of the weather systems at the skippers’ meeting.