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Kirkland Sailing Club Race School

Learn from instructors who win races!

All our race school instructors have strong race pedigrees and will help you tune your skills to become more competitive as a skipper or crew

In this 4-week course you will sail J/80’s on Monday nights from Shilshole Bay Marina. We will meet at the boat at 5pm, do some pre-race practice, participate in the race, and get back ashore for a debrief around 9pm. That is four hours of coaching on the water per day on a sporty J/80 with an asymmetrical spinnaker!

Book now & reserve your space here!!

As part of the course, you will receive a copy of the Getting Started in Sailboat Racing. Furthermore, we will have weekly video conferences to cover various topics. These will be recorded and made available on our website for your convenience.

Topics will include:

  • How races work and where to get race information
  • Race starts and starting techniques
  • Boat handling – how to go fast!
  • Race tactics (e.g., laylines, shifts, favored tacks, etc.)
  • Boat prep
  • Team building

Each week the students will rotate positions on the boat. Each role has nuances and although you may not be able to master each, you’ll develop an appreciation for the synergy between them.

If you are new to racing, this course will catapult you on your journey to becoming a competent racer. And if you’ve been racing on other’s boats, you’ll be armed with resources and experiences that would typically take years to build, making you a much sought-after crew.

This course is designed for sailors who want to learn how to race. It is not intended to teach sailing. Students are not required to hold any certifications. Still, they are expected to know the basics of sailing, which include points of sail, the basic maneuvers of heading up, bearing away, tacking, gybing, and being able to helm a tillered boat.

Kirkland Sailing Club offers both private and group lessons should you need to brush up on these essential skills before joining this class.

KSC Race School

This exciting 4-week class will teach you how to go fast!

Join the Monday night Ballard Cup Series in a sporty J/80 with an accomplished racer and USCG Captain as coach out of Shilshole Bay marina. On-shore instruction will cover everything from race formats to starting sequences to strategy and tactics, as well as guidance on pre-race routines, tips for each role on the boat, valuable advice for aspiring skippers and much more.

Each week you’ll rotate roles on the boat to develop a full appreciation of each and their synergy. On-water coaching will include practice time for all maneuvers including mariner overboard drills to ensure you develop the skills necessary to make you a competent racer.


  • Basic Keelboat
  • Racing Fundamentals
  • Asymmetric Spinnaker

PRICE: $595

DATES: 4 Monday evenings from 5pm-9pm

  • May 8, 15, 22, Jun 5 (Shilshole)
  •  Jun 12, 19, Jul 10, 17 (Shilshole)
  • Aug 7, 14, 21, 28 (Shilshole)

Participants must be familiar with points of sail, basic maneuvers and helming a tiller-steered boat. Private lessons with the coach are available through Kirkland Sailing Club to help you brush up on any of these areas prior or during the four-week program.