Victoria's Abby Brown

Athletes hope to make waves at B.C. Summer Games

Three local athletes are hoping to sail their way to victory at one of the most prestigious youth sporting events in the province.

Three local athletes are hoping to sail their way to victory at one of the most prestigious youth sporting events in the province this summer.

Sixteen-year-olds Abby Brown, Cameron Wallace and Makena Shepard of Victoria have been selected to compete in sailing at the B.C. Summer Games in Abbotsford later this month.

The trio qualified for the Games earlier this year following successful finishes at a local regatta, which required contestants to finish in the top of their category to qualify to compete in the Games.

“We were ecstatic,” said Brown, who is part of the crew and responsible for controlling the two front sails, and keeping the sailboat flat. “We couldn’t stop smiling, we were really excited about it.”

Brown will go to the Games alongside her skipper, Caitlyn Shum, and Wallace. They will compete in the 420 category (a two-person boat that’s roughly 12-feet-long). Shepard will race solo in the lazer radial category in a roughly four-metre-long sailboat.

Sailing is not just a sport for these teenagers, but a passion.

“When you get out there, there’s no timelines, you get to go out there and it’s like an escape from reality. You get to be there and be in the moment,” said Brown, who has been sailing since she was a child and is excited to see how they’ll measure up to other competitors.

For Wallace, the physical and mental aspect of sailing provides a unique challenge that tests all of his abilities.

Heading into the Games, each team will be practicing their skills with their respective teams, including double taps to maneuver away from other boats, making sure they know how to stop and stay on the start line and ensuring the boat is sailing as fast as it can go.

While they practice several times a week (often times racing against each other) at the Royal Victoria Yacht Club, one of the biggest challenges for the trio will be the environment. Instead of sailing in the ocean, they’ll be competing in a lake.

“It will be interesting to see how current won’t be a factor,” said Wallace, adding he’ll be racing with his skipper Hannah in the male category. “(We’ll be) dealing with being probably one of the lighter boats on the course and dealing with heavy winds and keeping our boat under control.”

For Shepard, staying concentrated for the full three days will also be a challenge.

“It’s tiring being on the water for that long,” she said, adding the course has a two-hour time limit, but most races she’s competed in the past have only taken 45 minutes. “Racing in a place you’ve never been before can also bring up new challenges. I want to do my best and stay concentrated.”

The B.C. Summer Games are a biennial celebration of sport and community, bringing together more than 3,600 athletes to compete in 18 sports, including baseball, basketball, equestrian, lacrosse, synchronized swimming, triathlon, volleyball and wrestling. The Games take place in Abbotsford from July 21 to 24.

 

 

Just Posted

Coroner’s inquest announced for Oak Bay teen’s overdose death

Elliot Eurchuk was 16 years old when he died of an opioid overdose at his Oak Bay home

Councillor wants to see concrete action after Saanich declares climate emergency

Coun. Nathalie Chambers doesn’t want declaration to be mere ‘lip-service’

UPDATE: West Shore RCMP reunite camera with owner

Police sought public’s help to identify people photographed on the camera with record-time results

Beware of geese: Nesting season may trigger aggressive behaviour

Greater Victoria residents will have to be wary of nesting geese in the area

Greater Victoria leaders coming together to talk diversity and equity

Royal Road University’s Inclusion Project engages community stakeholders from public, private sectors

Victoria hosts ‘Ultimate Hockey Fan Cave’

The hockey cave was recently featured on a Netflix special

Military officer accused of sexual misconduct, drunkenness in B.C., Alberta

Warrant Officer Jarvis Kevin Malone is charged under the National Defence Act

Stranger climbs onto B.C. family’s second-floor balcony, lights fire in barbecue

Incident in Abbotsford terrifies family with two-year-old boy

Howard the giant gnome finds new home on Vancouver Island

Iconic attraction will move from Nanoose Bay to Galey Farms in Saanich

Harbour Air to convert to all-electric seaplanes

Seaplane company to modify fleet with a 750-horsepower electric motor

Sailings cancelled after BC Ferries boat hits Langdale terminal

The Queen of Surrey is stuck on the dock, causing delays to Horseshoe Bay trips

Is it a homicide? B.C. woman dies in hospital, seven months after being shot

Stepfather think Chilliwack case should now be a homicide, but IHIT has not confirmed anything

SPCA seizes 54 animals from Vernon property

Animals weren’t receiving adequate care

Morneau unveils principles for Indigenous ownership in Trans Mountain pipeline

The controversial pipeline was bought by Ottawa last year

Most Read