2024 CanAm Series Wrap up – US Nationals

Apr 4, 2024

By John Seepe


Every winter for the last ten years, 2.4-meter sailboat fleets from both Canada and the United States gather for the CanAm Regatta Series.    This year’s series saw the greatest numbers on record for our annual event, with 24 boats sailing in the regattas out of CHYC (Charlotte Harbor Yacht Club) in Port Charlotte Florida.    9 Canadian boats and 15 American boats competed in what turned out to be the best weather in memory.

The Series comprised of 5 regattas and there were no days which failed to have wind.   Most race days saw higher winds and warm temperatures so racing conditions were enjoyed by all on the Peace River.    One day the racing was suspended after only one race due to heavy conditions.

The race committee laid out great courses and managed the adjustments efficiently, making the sailing very fair and enjoyable.    Last year the club docks were heavily damaged due to a hurricane so all the boats put in each day and rigged on the one floating dock available.   With all the sailors and volunteers working together this went smoothly and maybe even better than when we had more dockage.

The days when winds were up and “spicy” saw the normal breakdowns and thorough inspection of rigs weeded out troubles before they became big ones.    One race day with high winds had more rivet issues than the fleet can remember ever experiencing in the past.    The majority of the rivet failures were boom vang failures.

The fleet was tight with all the races being 4 legged windward-leeward races.   Many of the races saw multiple boats finishing in mass, overlapped and fighting for every last inch.    Many were close between the first boat and last boat to finish as the fleet got better over time.

The fun on the water was complemented by the activities off the water having fun and conversations or helping each other upgrade or repair boats.   One moment had Olympians meeting each other for the first time, Ulli Libor from Germany (1968 & 1972) met Allan Leilbel from Canada (1972 & 1976) along with Dee Smith from USA (2016) chatting and sharing memories.

The results of the CanAm Series for 2024 ended with a tie between 3rd and 4th place.   Tony Pocklington (US Vice President) took home 4thplace losing out 3rd place to Jeff Linton from Davis Island Yacht Club (World Champion in Lightning Class).    Second place was won by Allan Leibel (member of Canadian Olympic Committee) with 1st Place being earned by fellow Canadian Bruce Millar (Director and Technical Committee member for the 2.4mR International Class).

With all the competition and excitement everyone is looking forward to next year’s CanAm Series between such skilled sailors on the warm and spicy waters of Southwest Florida, which should be bigger and better than this year’s record event.