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What is High School Sailing?

High school sailing competitions are sailed under the auspices of the Interscholastic Sailing Association. There are about 230 high school sailing teams across the country, sailing in regional regattas and eventually national events. The Mid-West Region (MidWest Inter Scholastic Sailing Association) hosts regattas in Traverse City, Chicago, Milwaukee and Detroit.

This program will be for experienced sailors and we would assume that the student had previous sailing experience through programs such as TACS Advanced Sailing Camp or similar programs from other sailing organizations. Middle School students are welcome to participate in practices with the team and the "open" regattas, but are not eligible to participate in MISSA championship competitions.

Program Goals: The primary goals of the Sailing Team:

1. Develop sportsmanship, integrity, and interpersonal skills

2. Instill in the students an interest and appreciation for the sport of sailing

3. Develop skills in boat handling and sailing for those who wish to compete

4. Develop a respect for the sea and the environment

5. Learn and incorporate good safety and seamanship

6. Instill a sense of responsibility for the boats and equipment

7. Create a fun atmosphere in which the students want to participate




Fall & Spring Seasons - $480 per season. Dry suit rental fee of $100 (refundable deposit) $50 per sailor per season. Varsity / High School athletes will have dibs on suits, middle school will have based on availability

Practice Schedule: 


High School:  Monday Tuesday Thursday (after school-6:00 pm)  Arrive GTYC before 3:30, rig boats, 3:50 chalk talk, sail 4-5:30,5:30 de-rig stow gear, 5:50 debrief

Middle School:  Monday Tuesday (after school-6:00)  meet at TACS, Thursday meet at GTYC to race.

Important Dates and Regattas (Fall 2021): 


September 25      TC tier 3            

October 2, 3         MISSA Great Lakes Qualifier (TC) 

October 16           State Championships (double handed) (TC) 

October 17           State Championships (laser) (TC) and tier 3 420 

October 23, 24     PYC Last chance GLQ  

October 30           Tier 3 Cornwell Memorial Dia de los Muertos Regatta (TC) 

November 6, 7     GL Championship (Chicago YC) / Shepherd (Columbia YC) 


Competitions are held both here in TC and at sites around the Midwest. Please remember that not all the competitions are selected to attend and not all of our sailors travel to those regattas selected. Sailors compete for spots on the travel team and are selected by the coaching staff based on performance, availability, attendance at practices and competitive conditions (weight, etc). 


There are three fundamental types of regattas in High school sailing:


  1. Fleet Racing - This is a competition with teams of two boats, with two sailors in each 420 (for a minimum of 4 sailors for a competition). The fleet is divided into an A and B fleet and the winner is determined by the combined low point scores of each fleet. We often will bring extra or alternate sailors to these competitions to place smaller sailors in the boats on light wind days and conversely larger sailors in heavy wind conditions. The Mallory Trophy is the national championship for HS fleet racing and our sailors compete for this trophy each spring through State and Regional qualifiers.

  2. Team Racing - This is a competition between "teams" of three boats from each school and the winner is determined by the low point score of each team in multiple head to head competitions. The minimum amount of competitors in a team race is 6 sailors (again often alternates are helpful). The Baker Trophy is the national championship for HS team racing and our sailors compete for this trophy each spring through State and Regional qualifiers

  3. Tier 3 Events - The above two kinds of events are often qualifiers and championship events that are strictly controlled as to competitor requirements (grades 9-12 from registered schools). In order to increase opportunities to compete for smaller schools and our middle school teams, TACS and other sponsoring organizations host "Tier 3" events were many of the ISSA rules for participation are waived and multiple teams, combined school teams and middle school teams are welcomed. TACS hosts one tier 3 event each season and we attend as many as possible away Tier 3 regattas as well.


Reference Material and Links

Sailing as a sport is often very difficult to understand for those new to the sport. Most of us well understand conditions and rules around the more common sports of basketball and football. The best way to learn is to get involved with the boosters parents. Talk to us at the practices or email us for their contact info.


Also here are some Helpful links:

The Boats:

The Sailing Team will use primarily the Club 420. Boats “handle” differently in all conditions, and sailor’s ability and experience level will determine their place in the boat.  Some will be skipper while the others will crew. On the first days of practice, the coaches will evaluate the skills and experience of the students, and consider factors like ability, experience, size and age, in determining into which boat a student will be placed and with whom. Club 420s are fast, fun sloop rigged double-handed (two sailors!) boats that are very popular in youth programs around the country and is also the boat used in collegiate sailing.


Registration and Forms

Your can register your sailor by clicking the blue button labeled registration to the right. The Concussion Awareness Form must be read and sign (it's a State Law folks!) and if you are available to drive to away events (always appreciated) please fill out and sign the "Driver Information Form".  There is also a registration button for our summer pre-season training session.

Thanks to our friends at the Grand Traverse Yacht Club for all their help and support!



MidWest Inter Scholastic Sailing AssociationMISSA 2016-2017 Schedule

Procedural Rules For High School Sailing

Safety Procedures For High School Sailing

Play The Rules (Illustrations and Simulations)

Simplifed Summary of the Rules of racing

Team Racing Resources

UK-Halsey Rules Quiz ( new )

Interscholastic Sailing Association (ISSA)

2016 Cherryland Team Race Pictures

2016 Cherryland Team Race Photos (TC Sailors only)

2016 Season Practice Photos

2016 Spring Practice Photos

2015 Cornwell Memorial

2014 Fall Season Pictures

2013 Spring Team Pictures

2013 Spring Awards

2013 Spring Practices

2013 Red 8 Regatta

2013 GP Team Racing Regatta

2012 Michigan State Championships

2012 Team Racing Practice (Sept 27) Photos

2012 Team Racing Practice (Sept 25) Photos

2012 Team Racing Practice Regatta (April 14) Photos

2012 Mallory Qualifier Photos

2011 Great Lakes Championship

2011 Cornwell Memorial Regatta Pictures