Great things ahead for RCN Sail

RCN Sail program’s new Bavaria C45s (outboard nested) undergo final preparation at a contractor facility on Granville Island.

Michael McWhinnie

There is an ebb and flow to our personal and professional lives. Those times when new investments or capabilities come to fruition are infrequent; they seem all the more special.

Such was the case when training staff took delivery of the eight Orca-class patrol vessels when the local ship maintenance and repair community observed the construction of the modern Fleet Maintenance Facility Cape Breton, or currently, as we all observe, the jetty recapitalization project taking form.

That same sense of good fortune, albeit on a much more modest scale, is beginning to resonate with Naval Fleet School Pacific (NFS(P)) staff as an important milestone in their sail training vessel replacement program approaches.

There is a tangible sense of anticipation at NFS(P), especially at the Campus Support Division, which relies on the boats to run the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) Sail program.

Lieutenant (Navy) Ellery Down discusses rig configuration with a contractor at their facility on Granville Island.

“We’ve known for a while the new boats were coming, but now that they’re being rigged in Vancouver, they are no longer just an idea: they’ve become something tangible,” said Lieutenant (Navy) (Lt(N)) Ellery Down, RCN Sail Program Coordinator, during a recent inspection of the two yet-to-be-named Bavaria C45 sailboats at a contractor facility on Granville Island.

There is a strong and vibrant sailing community at CFB Esquimalt due largely to RCN Sail. The community is a driving force that fosters interest in sailing, attracts new members, and imparts essential knowledge and skills to participants.

Lt(N) Down is excited at the prospect of managing the new boats on behalf of NFS(P). Not only will their size double the unit’s training capacity, but the potential for increased crew size will also allow greater flexibility in how they employ them.

“With everything proceeding on schedule, we should be taking delivery of the boats in Esquimalt before the end of September,” he adds. “They will be a great asset for decades to come.”

The new sailboats will eventually replace STV Tuna and STV Goldcrest, two CS36s built in 1985 and presently operated by RCN Sail.

As these are modern and very capable vessels, they are bound to attract much attention, Lt(N) Down said. He hopes their acquisition will help promote sail training opportunities amongst the local Defence Team.

“The vessels will hopefully generate some interest and excitement about the Navy when Canadians see the RCN identifiers while we train, compete, or conduct outreach activities in the coastal waters of Vancouver Island,” he concluded.

RCN Sail program’s new Bavaria C45s (outboard nested) undergo final preparation at a contractor facility on Granville Island.

Filed Under: Top Stories


About the Author:

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Comments are closed.