Lake Ontario Offshore RacingSusan Hood Trophy Race presented by

Susan Hood Trophy Race presented by



2017 Susan Hood Trophy Race recap:

Congratulations to all the racers who made it out of their own clubs to compete in the Coolest Race on the Lake, The Susan Hood Trophy Race. This year provided many obstacles around the lake just to get boats in the water and sailing, but 91 yachts were on the start line Friday, June 3rd to take on the 78 mile overnight challenge. At the start of the race, winds were looking solid and a tight reach to Burlington was anticipated. Somewhere between the first and the eight starts the winds died and moved west with the lead boats pulling away creating the largest gap between fleets ever experienced in this race.


Spitfire, the Farr45 skippered by Jonathan Bamberger from National Yacht Club, took line honors finishing at 7:48:44 Saturday morning. At the opposite end, Folga, the  Beneteau 34 skippered by Yuriy Mikhailov from Mimico Cruising Club flying white sail only, was the final boat to complete the race at 04:03:44 Sunday morning. With the wind vanishing from the west end of the lake for over half the competitors a special congratulations goes to all those who had the perseverance to endure the at times interminable conditions and temperature changes and finish the race. In total 28 yachts withdrew from this year’s Susan Hood Trophy Race.


A special congratulation goes to this year’s Susan Hood Trophy Race Champions:

Switch, a J92 skippered by Andrew Sharp from Olcott Yacht Club, finishing with a corrected time of 0:16:19:46.  Switch competed in FS-FC 4 and finished with many boats from division 3 almost a full hour ahead of the next division 4 finisher, which is great sailing.  It is worth noting that according to our records, Switch has become the first boat from an American Yacht Club to win the Susan Hood trophy.

Crew included Doug Folsetter, Zoe Folsetter, Louis Johnson, Maureen Johnson and Ethan Sharp.

Spitfire, the Farr45 skippered by Jonathan Bamberger from National Yacht Club finishing at 0:7:48:44, is this year’s Susan Hood IRC Champion as well.

We extend a special thank you to Graham Dougall and all the volunteers working on the finish line for an extended manning of the station far beyond what was anticipated.


The 2018 Susan Hood Trophy Race presented by is run by the Port Credit Yacht Club and is scheduled to run on Friday, June 1, 2018 at PCYC. Boats typically are back at PCYC mid-day or during the afternoon of the following day.The first great race of the season

Since 1955, fully crewed yachts have been taking the challenge of a spring offshore race.

The Susan Hood is a great race to shake down your boat and crew and start the 2018 season.

Booking Slips at PCYC: If you are not a member of PCYC and plan to stay overnight at the club, you must fill in a visitor registration form. The form will be posted here around a week prior to the race.

Booking Information:  If you are planning on using a visitor’s dock at PCYC prior to the Susan Hood, or the LOSHRS Course Race, ensure that you book your spot. Use the following link until end of day May 30th: Port Credit Yacht Club – Event Registration.  After My 30th, you’ll need to email the PCYC Harbourmaster at to reserve a slip.

Why race the Susan Hood Trophy Race?

  • Excellent warm up race for the LO300
  • Experience the weather challenges offered in spring
  • Convenient overnight racing will not tie up the weekend
  • Great pre-race and post- race camaraderie


by John Weakley

A long time ago (back in the 50’s), the vast majority of what we now call Racer/Cruiser yachts were custom built, usually of wood, and at the west end of Lake Ontario the only measurement handicap system was the Cruising Club of America (CCA) Rule. There were two major drawbacks to this rule: you had to have your yacht weighed, and in almost all cases you had to have a set of plans. There were several other performance rules in which your handicap changed each time you raced (just like your golf handicap) but as Doug Hood said “That was fine if you were a golfer, but the losers kept winning.”

In the spring of 1955, Doug Hood, a member of Port Credit Yacht Club, approached George Cuthbertson (the big George of C&C) and offered to put up a trophy if someone would produce a simple measurement system for handicapping custom built yachts. Big George told Doug of the “Gruthbertson” Rule that he and Colonel Grant had designed and that had been tried in Kingston. (Col. Grant was a professor at RMC and very active in sailing). Under this Rule, the yacht was measured in the water and not weighed. They decided to try it out with Doug donating the trophy named after his brand new bouncing baby daughter Susan. Approximately 25 boats were measured and the first race was held in early June. The course was Port Credit to Oakville to Port Dalhousie and back to Port Credit. In spite of a fire on one yacht, very little wind, and Doug winning his own trophy (in a Cruising 6 Metre “Junge”), the race was a great success.

The rule became known as the Lake Ontario Rule and an organization was formed to issue rating certificates. For the next 35 years LOR was the most popular handicap system on the lake until it was replaced by PHRF, a handicap system that in most cases only requires the measurement of sails.

Today, the Susan Hood Trophy is presented to the yacht winning PHRF overall, with other trophies for the division winners. It is believed that this is the only case where the title trophy is not awarded to the winner of the “Grand Prix” class (CCA, IOR, and now IMS), although there are trophies for those divisions as well.

“Excerpted from an article entitled “Susan Hood Has A Birthday Coming” which appeared in the May 1994 edition of the PCYC Newsletter “Credit Notes”. That article was based on a conversation with Doug Hood.”