MAY 23 – 27, 2019
- Competitors begin arriving in Inner Harbour: Thursday May 23, 2019
- Docks open to public: Thursday May 23, 2019
- Docks open to public: Friday May 24, 2019 until 6 PM
- Watch the start of Swiftsure from Clover Point – Saturday May 25, 2019
- From 8:00 AM Pancake Breakfast will be served with ham, coffee or juice for $7.00, tea & muffins also available (Central Saanich Lions Club)
- From 9:00 AM Swiftsure 2019 first of five race starts at 10 minute intervals
- From about 10:00 AM RCAF Search & Rescue demo off Clover Point
- Yachts in the Swiftsure Inshore Yacht races will cross the finish line in Cadboro Bay: 3:00 to 7:00 PM May 25
- Yachts in the Four Long Courses will cross the finish line at Ogden Point: late Saturday, May 25 up to 6:00 AM, Monday May 27
- Watch the finishing yachts arrive in Victoria’s Inner Harbour atop Ship Point
More information about the 2019 race will become available in the Swiftsure Public Events page
The Swiftsure International Yacht Race is the premier long distance sailing race in the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia area. Starting and ending in Victoria, BC, Canada, the Swiftsure is international because the midpoint markers for the four long courses are in U.S. waters. Organized by the Royal Victoria Yacht Club, the race occurs during the Memorial Day weekend in May with staggered starts on Saturday morning. The race is most popular with sailors from British Columbia and Washington, but it has drawn boats from as far away as California, Hawaii, New Zealand, and even Russia.
The nature of the course and the notoriously unpredictable winds and currents provide an exacting test of seamanship. Swiftsure consists of nine races over five courses (tabulated below) in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, including the Swiftsure Inshore Classic (formerly “Sookesure” then “Rosedale Rock”) and “Classics” races. Therefore, it offers wide appeal to the professional and experienced amateur sailor who takes pride in his or her boat, big or small. In some years, light winds led to the race being dubbed the “Driftsure;” in other years, like 1971, 1979, and 2012, strong winds (up to 35 knots) led to boats dropping out or even being dismasted.