Racing & Regattas

The CYC Foundation supports the Rickover Academy JNROTC racing team, the Neill Advanced Sailing Clinic for accomplished junior 420 sailors, and the North American Challenge Cup, one of the longest-running sailing events for disabled adults.

Rickover Academy

For nearly a decade, CYC Foundation has partnered with the Rickover Naval Academy, a Chicago Public School (CPS) located within Senn Public High School in the Edgewater community to promote the nautical arts. Begun as a sail safety and training program in 2008, this relationship has introduced sailing at all levels to well over 200 students. In addition to traditional Sonar and 420 training programs, the program has provided sailing opportunities on Etchell's during the 2008 Worlds, the J-105 fleet, Farr 40's, a Volvo 70 and a few Wednesday night "soda pop" crew spots.

Having evolved to be more than a sailing program, the CYC Foundation has enabled CPS students to learn about local nautical history, discover the science involved in the manufacture and operation of sail boats, enjoy the yacht club environs during Fleet Reviews and annual Military Balls (Belmont and Monroe) and connect with yacht club members. One of the major programs involves sending young women on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure on a tall ship during the summer. Over the past seven years, 29 girls have been provided grants to crew a working tall ship on the waters of both Lake Michigan and the Atlantic Ocean.

The Rickover Racing Sail Program follows a strong format of consistent curriculum, instruction and scheduling. Through a partnership, CYC Foundation supports the Rickover Academy NJROTC racing team by supplying safety equipment, sail training and transportation. There are two distinct teams within this program. The Development Team teaches beginning and intermediate sailing to the cadets. If Development Team members progress and want to move to the next level, they are promoted to the Race Team. The race team focuses on advanced sailing techniques and racing tactics that they apply on the racecourse against other Midwest high school teams. With this structure, the cadets are able to mingle with students from other high schools and go back to their school with unique experiences and expanded horizons.

Neill Advanced Sailing Clinic

The Neill Advanced Sailing Clinic, sponsored by the CYC Foundation, is a high-level educational opportunity for the country’s most accomplished junior 420 and Laser sailors who are working hard to elevate their racing skills to the next level. The clinic is named for Tom Neill, who was an avid Chicago Yacht Club sailor and competitor locally and nationally.

The program recruits top-level college coaches from around the country to work with up and coming high school sailors. The Clinic consists of lectures and on-the-water drills including tactics, strategy, sail trim and boat speed. Coaches use daily video footage, archival footage, chalk talks, land demos and on the water exercises. The experience is rounded out with nightly guest speakers, presentations, and Chicago sight-seeing to show the sailors new avenues of sailing and a little of the amazing city of Chicago.

Click here to read a letter of appreciation from a junior sailor to the Chicago Yacht Club Foundation.

For applications or more information, visit

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