Author Archives: Mike McEvoy

Fireball International Elections

Upcoming Election

Commodore – .As there are two nominations for the Commodore’s position a vote will be required to determine who will fill the position for the coming three years. The nominees are Joe Jospe (CAN) and Pat Crump (USA)


Joe Jospe (CAN)


Pat Crump (USA)

The election period will be between October 1st and October 30th 2014.

Past Commodore Francois Schluchter has been asked to oversee the process as an independent and will collate the votes.



Here is the position of Joe Jospe and here is the position of Pat Crump.

Other executive positions are:

Rear Commodore Africa – David Laing (South Africa) – Elected Unopposed – David continues on in this position having taken over from Peter Colebank in March this year.  Fireball International would like to thank Peter for the work that he has put in over more than 20 years.

Rear Commodore Asia – Hiroshi Kato (Japan) – Elected Unopposed – Hiro continues on in this position having served several terms.

Rear Commodores Australia & Oceania - Ben Schulz (Australia)  – Elected Unopposed – Ben continues on in this position having served one term.

Rear Commodore North America – Debbie Kirkby (Canada) – Elected Unopposed – Debbie replaces Robert Thompson who has chosen not to stand again after many years in the position. Fireball International would like to thank Robert for the work that he has put in over the years.

Rear Commodore Europe – Jakub Napravnik  (Czech Republic) – Elected Unopposed – Jakub replaces Maja Suter who has chosen not to stand again after many years in the position.  Fireball International would like to thank Maja for the work that she has put in over the years.

FAntastic Nepean FAll REgatta (FANFARE)


FANFARE was the inaugural Ottawa Valley Championship.  Saturday’s racing got underway after a short delay waiting for the wind.  While the first races were sailed in lighter conditions the wind built steadily throughout the day to a solid 15knots with gusts into the 20’s.  Following the 55+ knots registered the previous evening that was a relief.

Joe Jospe and Rob Levy teamed up together and it took them the first race to relearn their crewing skills (whoever was crewing in that race) and Rune Lausten and Pete Van Rossem took the bullet.

Levy/Jospe (or Jospe/Levy) took the next race followed by Rune and Pete.  Unfortunately Pete had to leave to attend a wedding in Kingston and so that was the end of their racing for the day.

Meanwhile Pierre Carpentier and Tom Bird encountered equipment issues and missed the first three races.  Upon their return to the water in Race 4 they promptly showed winning form with a win to begin a comeback that would eventually see them place third in the regatta.

After the traditional Hip of Beef dinner, delayed a little due to a power outage from the previous nights storm, the fleet returned on Sunday to lighter conditions.  Four points separated McEvoy/Faison from Dave Landsberg and Mona Barakat.; Very shifty and dying winds confounded nearly everyone with each boat having apparent moments of glory only to find themselves on the elevator to the bottom of the fleet.  McEvoy and Faison sailed their two drop races in these conditions but recovered to take a second in the final race of the day.  Dave and Mona also had some difficult results which opened the door for Carpentier/Bird and Lausten/Van Rossem to leapfrog them into third and fourth place.

Oh and Jospe and Levy finished in first with equal combinations of firsts and seconds….but Joe who was crewing on Sunday pointed out that he crossed the line first!

Full results are here


2015 North American Championship



Davis Island Yacht Club will host the 2015 North Americans March 9-11, 2015 just prior to the 50th Midwinters.  The NA’s will be a three-day event followed by a layday to allow time to explore the Tampa and Orlando area followed by the 50th Midwinters March 13-15.

Visit the Tampa Tourism site to explore all the things to do in and around Tampa and plan to make this a family vacation in sunny, Gulf Coast Florida.

Here’s all you need to know about the Championship



2015 Midwinters – 50th Annual


The 50th consecutive running of the Fireball Midwinters will take place March 13-15, 2015 at the Davis Island Yacht Club.  It’s doubtful that any class anywhere has been welcomed at the same club for such an extended period of time and the organizers are working hard to commemorate this occasion.  There are rumours that some European boats are planning to attend and participate in this and the North American Championship which will be part of the same week-long celebration of sailing at the “Sailingest Club in the South”

Mark your calendars, book time off, polish off the old boat and plan to be there

Here’s the NOR and for information on things to do in the area visit Tampa Tourism

US Nationals at CGOD

US Nationals at the CGOD 2014, August 1-3. Aka; The Gorge.

12 courageous Fireball teams made the journey from afar to gather at the sailing mecca of Cascade Locks, Oregon for the 2014 US Nationals. In attendance were two boats from Oregon, four from Victoria, three from Calgary, one each from Arizona and Colorado, and a team from Montreal. All who came were rewarded with sunny days in the 90‘s and three days of fine wind. The trip and effort were regretted by none.

Friday opened with an unexpectedly light wind day. Well, at least light for the Gorge. The day was fine with sunshine and light clouds with winds in the mid-teens and gusts around twenty. After four races, the first day leaders were Frank Crawford and Sean Holmes-Smith in boat #14156. Showing all that the old North American (Ed Note Australian) boats still have plenty of fight. The front group was tight with Joe Jospe/Tom Egli and Debbie Kirkby/Gregg Ferguson tied at one point back followed by Jamie Cox/Simon Pearson just one more back.

Day two brought on real Gorge conditions. Medium wind on the way out led to racing conditions in the mid-twenties with gusts strong enough to knock everyone down. Every team had the opportunity to wash their boats as no one was upright all day (Ed Note Jospe and Egli dispute this!). Several boats broke and ran into shore for repairs and a few teams decided it was best to retire for the later races. The heavy winds gave Joe and Tom a chance to prove their experience and use their size and strength to pull off three bullets and take a commanding lead.

On the final day, again the wind wasn’t quite up to truly Gorge-like conditions. Instead of brutality we had beautiful sun, fairly flat water, and great sailing with winds again in the high teens low twenties. The lighter conditions kept all the boats much closer together and gave some of the lighter teams a chance to box with the front group. The ‘evil doctor’ Rob Thompson/Francis Westlake had two strong bullets in his new boat. the other wins went to Debbie and Gregg and Joe and Tom.

Other teams competing were Mianne Erne/Clay Poulson, Mark Cummings/Evelyn Chisholm, Peter Wirth/Mike Leitch, Paithen Larkens/Alana, Greg Desilets/ Pete Adam, Liz Brennan/Michael Moleski, and Leigh Anderson with Vanessa Edwards.

Everyone who attended this event was thrilled to be at this great event. The Western North American fleet meets here every year for a reason. Wonderful weather, fabulously consistent winds, and great company. Every Fireballer on the planet should at least once in their lifetime, sail the Gorge!!!

Clay Poulson

USIFA President

Fireball (12 boats) (top)
Series Standing – 12 races scored

Sail   Boat   Skipper Yacht Club  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12  Total Pos
USA14968      Joe Jospe   Pointe Claire Yacht Club   [5]   1   [4]   1   2   1   1   1   3   3   1   3   17  
14680   TANGERRO   JAMES COX   ROYAL VICTORIA YACHT CLUB   1   [7]   2   2   1   3   3   [4]   2   1   4   2   21  
14156   Go Deja   Frank Crawford   Glenmore Sailing Club   3   3   1   3   3   2   2   3   [4]   2   [13/RET]   4   26  
CAN14766      Debbie Kirkby   Glenmore Sailing Club   2   2   3   4   5   4   5   2   6   [13/OCS]   2   [13/OCS]   35  
15098   Robert Thompson   Robert Thompson   Royal Victoria Yacht Club   4   4   5   8   4   [13/DNF]   7   5   1   [13/OCS]   5   1   44  
15034   Queso Suiza   Mianne Erne   Hallvil Yacht Club   7   6   7   5   [9]   6   [9]   6   5   4   3   7   56  
14425   Dannces With Waves   Peter Wirth   Aspen Yacht Club   [9]   5   6   6   7   7   4   [9]   9   8   7   5   64T  
11800   eeyore   MARK CUMMINGS   cbsa   6   8   8   [9]   6   5   6   7   7   5   [13/OCS]   6   64T  
14758   Incorrigible   Leigh Andersen   CBSA   8   [10]   10   7   8   8   8   10   [12]   7   8   10   84  
14428   Jane   Paithen Larkins   VLSC   [13/DNF]   9   9   [11]   10   9   10   8   11   6   6   8   86  
15051   Trois Voiles an Vent   Greg Desilets   VLSC   10   11   11   10   11   [13/DNF]   [13/DNS]   13/DNS   8   10   9   9   102  
CAN14481   Concorde   Liz Brennan   Glenmore Sailing Club   11   12   12   12   12   [13/DNF]   [13/DNS]   13/DNS   10   9   10   11   112  

North Americans 2014 Recap

North Americans 2014 – Wabamun Sailing Club

by Sean Holmes-Smith

Wabamun Sailing Club, west of Edmonton hosted 11 boats of sailors from Alberta, BC and Oregon. For those who had to rig their boats on Saturday morning the wet start was not a welcoming one but definitely a sign of things to come for the weather.

Saturday racing saw a the winds shift a lot and die down to as little as 5 knots and gust up to as much as 12 knots (just a rough guess and could be completely wrong). With that much change in the wind speed and direction it was a real busy day for all us sailors who were moving in and out way too much to keep the boat flat.   The winners of the 5 races that were run on Saturday were Debbie/Gregg, Frank/Sean, Jamie/Simon, Debbie/Gregg, Debbie/Gregg. Despite only have one 1st place finish, Simon/Jamie managed to rack up 4 2nd place finishes on Saturday which had them leading the regatta. While Debbie/Gregg who were winners of three races had some boat problems and swimming problems that had them deep in the other two races, which had them 2 points back. This left Frank and myself 3 points back in 3rd (and only 2 points up on 4th). The only thing constant about the wind was that it was constantly shifting, there were a lot of lead changes and boats coming from way back and falling way back in one leg.

With only two more races left in the regatta and nothing decided yet, Sunday had two intense races with lots of lead changes, and surprises as well as a huge rain/hail storm and line squall to end it all. In first race of the day, Jamie/Simon, Debbie/Gregg and Hamish/Francis got out in front and stayed there until the last windward leg until a huge shift came in from the right side where Frank and I along with John Henderson and Mike Leitch were there to capitalize and catch up. At the last mark rounding before going downwind the finish the top 5 boats were completely mixed up and very close. Frank and I managed to stay in front of the charging Debbie/Gregg. In the final race of the regatta, it was a battle between 4-6 boats all the way around the race course, Frank and I spent the first part of the race battling it out and change positions with Debbie and Gregg, and then the 2nd half of the race we were also battling with Simon/Jamie, and John/Mike.   Coming downwind towards the finish we had 4 boats battling it out hard to find the next gust and wave to get ahead, as well as Mark/Evelin charging up from behind with a huge gust. At the finish line there was 5 boat finishing at the same time (PHOT O FINISH!!!). Frank and I squeaked ahead to take the win with Mark/Evelin’s late charge grabbing them 2nd, and Jamie/Simon along with John/Mike tied for 3rd and Debbie/Gregg getting just edged out by everyone and finishing 5th. It’s not over till it’s over, and even then you don’t know for sure.

As soon as the top boats finished it was a race to get the spinnaker’s down as there was a big storm coming. The Sail in through that storm was crazy as there was small hail and heavy rain that were pelting down on us along with the massive wind that came with. This was a new experience, and looking back quite a cool one as the views of the boats sailing by us was quite spectacular.

Thanks to the Tichkowsky family and Wabamun Sailng Club for putting on the regatta. It was a grand time.

Full results 2014 North American Fireball

36th Sam Myers Memorial Regatta

A great time was had by all at the 36th Annual Sam Myers Regatta at Pymatuning Sailing Club. We ended up with one Fireball short of having our own separate start with only four boats showing up and were placed in a very competitive handicap fleet consisting of four Fireballs, two Lasers and one very good Windmill.

Saturday broke with blue skies and the wind blowing from the south in the 10-12 mph range with gusts coming in at 15 with just the hint of white caps on the lake.   The race committee got us off on time using a windward leeward course with Dave and Lainey White and the Windmill crossing the line together but with the handicap the win went to the Windmill and Dave had to settle for second place. Cal Cotton crossed the line in third followed by Fred Steward and John Abby brought up the rear. The second race saw the wind increase a bit and the race committee opted for a triangle course. The Windmill kept up with Dave and Lainey for the weather leg but the resulting reaches put the Fireball way in front but the Windmill still managed to beat Fred Steward for second place with Cal Cotton coming in fourth and John Abby taking fifth. The Lasers were in the group as well but at that point in time nobody was really keeping track of them.   One more race was done on Saturday which went back to the windward leeward format only this time it was twice around and the Windmill got Dave and Lainey at the finish with Fred taking another third and John Abby placing fourth. Cal had to settle for a fifth due to a capsize on the last windward leg.

As usual the club had a good meal with plenty of conversation and partying into the night, leaving everyone wanting Sunday to come so we could do it again.   But as Jimmy Buffet sings, there’s a big difference between Saturday night and Sunday morning. During the night a series of storm fronts started to push through the area and the weather turned grey with heavy showers and some thunder in the early morning. The race committee postponed the racing for about an hour and a half and checked the radar and the conditions on the lake several times before lowering the postponement flag and giving us the half hour gun.  The wind was blowing in the 18-20 mph range with gust hitting the mid twenty’s easily. The waves were also starting to build into the legendary Pymatuning rollers which happens when the wind comes from the south. The race committee wanted to get as many races in as possible before the next set of storm came through so all courses were windward leeward. Once again Dave and Lainey White battled the Windmill for first place with Cal Cotton and John Abby fighting for second place. Both suffered a capsize and split the first two races.   Fred Steward decided to call it a weekend and packed his boat up for home before the racing started. The last race saw the winds increase a bit and both the Windmill and the Whites had a great time planning both to weather and downwind with Dave and Lainey White getting to finish line first but again the course wasn’t long enough to beat the Windmill on time.

After sorting out the final standings and times the Windmill took first place in our division and Dave and Lainey took second followed by a Laser which ended up in third place.   This was one regatta were another Fireball or four more Windmills would have helped.   But the competition was good and everyone enjoyed themselves and in the end that’s what it’s all about anyway. Breaking down the boat in a rain storm wasn’t exactly fun but the memory of all three sails up and planning faster than anyone else heading down to the leeward mark was. So congratulations to Pymatuning Sailing Club for hosting another great Sam Myers and to everyone who came out to support it.

Weathermark Sailboats are coming to North America

Weathermark logo 1Weathermark Sailboats is happy to announce the appointment of Mike McEvoy as agent for the North American market. Mike has over 40 years experience in Fireball as well as many years as a race coach in Canada.
A perennial problem for potential Fireball purchasers in Canada and the USA has been the availability of boats without a long waiting period and in the face of high shipping costs. With regular shipments to the East Coast due to our partnership with Rondar Raceboats , we can supply boats, spars, and sails for the North American market with very reasonable shipping rates Pricing can be obtained by contacting Mike at The first Weathermark boat in North America is expected this July and will soon be seen on the regatta circuit.

The principal at Weathermark is Dave Hall. As an old hand in the Fireball, Dave has put his years of experience and thoughts into the construction of the hull, deck and internal design. The hull is the current “wide bow” thinking but has a slightly more vee’d entry and is not as bulbous as the other current boats available. This makes the boat kinder through the water upwind. The water line length is also maximised and the aft rocker is as flat as the rules permit.

weathermark boatweathermark jib bar

Inside, the forward part of the centreboard case is a low as practical to save those shins. The substantial jib bars go from the front of the case to the side tanks in line with the shrouds forming a rigid frame and fairing into an extra bulkhead

.weathermark cockpitweathermark cockpit 2
The centre board case rises after the thwart onto a flat table to allow owners a free hand in the way they like their controls. The deck has been made functional and aesthetically pleasing. The aft tank has the recess for the spinnaker sheets and the coaming is designed for function and comfort without looking too imposing. The foredeck comes back further than other builders but just far enough to add extra strength and rigidity to the mast area without fouling the vang.

Both hull and deck moulds have been made to the highest standards to keep the design shape and enable them to be used in conjunction with a vacuum bag system and to go in an oven for post curing.

Visit the webpage at Weathermark Sailboats or on Facebook

Weathermark on Facebook

You can contact Mike for the latest updates and prices: 613-796-2122

So you want to go to a regatta!

With the 2014 regatta season about to start that means loading the boat on a trailer and heading out. Some have never done it….here’s some tips.  Contacts have been updated so if you have questions ask

A reprint from the Ontario Fireball newsletter, May 2001

I’ve been sending these occasional bulletins out with the hope of getting more boats on the water this season. ‘Fleet-building” for the entire province is somewhat difficult from Ottawa, so I’m also depending an all the old regulars out there to help nurture and encourage any fleet newcomers in their areas.

I know for a fact that there are Fireballers out there that have never travelled to a regatta outside of their home waters. Guess what – it’s actually a lot of fun. The social side of Fireball sailing should never be overlooked either, it’s what keeps many of us in the fleet (okay, the boats are fun to sail too).

Let’s go over a list of concerns you might have before going on your first road trip:

  • Do you need a measurement certificate? While we encourage all boats to be “legal” Fireballs, with the certificate to prove it, in reality the only nearby regatta where you’ll be asked for it this year will be the Canadians in Montreal in September. If this worries you, don’t hesitate to contact our measurer, Dave Landsberg. ( He can issue you a new certificate if there is a record of the boat being measured or arrange to have the boat measured.
  • Do you need to know the rules? I’d encourage you to be familiar with the basics, and generally just try to do what everyone else does and stay out of trouble. It gets a bit aggressive at times at the front of the fleet, but if this is your first regatta that probably isn’t a concern to you.
  • Do you need a launch dolly? No. Sure, they make it convenient for getting on and off the water, but usually you can borrow one (or get a few others to just carry your boat to the water). You MAY need something to set the boat down on though – a couple of carpeted chunks of 4×4 will do the trick.
    • Nepean Sailing Club (NSC) – Nepean One Design in June and Fanfare in September – the dinghy area is gravel, but there is a grass strip near the water that will accommodate a few boats. Launching is from ramps. You can park near your boat. Camping is allowed on club grounds. Contact Jeremy Kennedy ( if you have questions about this venue.
    • Britannia Yacht Club (BYC) – National Capital in August – there is a small area near the gas dock that can accommodate a few Fireballs. Main dinghy area is around on the North side of the harbour and a long walk back to the Club
    • Pointe Claire Yacht Club (Montreal). All paved, no grass. Concrete ramps for launching. No camping allowed on the property. Stephen Waldie ( ) is your contact.
    • Sam Myers Regatta at Pymatuning Sailing Club (Andover Ohio) in July. Great venue. Camping on site is encouraged and the beer flows freely (there are a few B&Bs in Andover if you aren’t a camper). All grass. Boats are lifted in off of floating docks. Cal Cotton ( is your contact.
    • Pymatuning Yacht Club (Jamestown PA) Opposite end of the lake from PSC Lots of grass, camping club, ramp launching
  • What else do you need to bring? Have a watch, preferably one that can be set to work as a countdown timer. Make sure you have a small paddle (it’s the law, and also handy for getting in & out of unfamiliar harbours) and a life jacket for each person on the boat. Pack a light lunch for each day, and have a bottle or two of water on the boat. Sunscreen is a good idea, and think about having more clothing (spraytops etc) on the boat than you think you’ll need. It’s no fun being cold & wet. Most of these things can be stuffed into the tanks through the inspection ports. Have enough cash for the entry fee, dinners, and drinks. Most regattas aren’t terribly expensive affairs, unless you’re into staying at posh hotels. And there are discounts available on hotels through the CFA. Don’t be shy about asking the regatta contact if any of the fleet locals will put you up for the duration of the regatta – usually there are some billets available.
  • Get to the site early enough to be sure you’re rigged in time and not stressed out by rushing. This may mean arriving the night before. Look up the Notice of Race beforehand to know what time the first start is, and be out there on time. The Race Committee won’t wait for you.

That’s all there is to it. I hope to see a lot of boats out there this season!


Phil Locker, CAN14678