Officially launched in February 2015, Wind Athletes has supported Canada’s premier ocean racing program, Canadian Ocean Racing, through the use of the Open 60 O Canada and financial support from our generous private donors to make this program possible.
Canadian Ocean Racing’s mission is to build the sport of offshore racing in Canada. Over the past few years, a group of aspiring Canadian offshore athletes have sailed with the program across Canada and the Atlantic Ocean. Gaining thousands of miles of experience individually and as a team, the team has competed in international IMOCA and IRC races on behalf of Canada.
The program began with a Launch Tour in Spring 2015 in which select Aspiring Offshore Athletes (AOA) joined Canada Rolex Sailor of the Year Eric Holden on a Canadian coast-to-coast journey. Since then, Six AOAs have sailed over 15,000 NM on the Open 60 O Canada, as the team completed two training Transatlantics and entered two IMOCA class races.
Canadian Ocean Racing’s program provided Aspiring Offshore Athletes with access to a competitive Open 60 (OCANADA) to build their experience as individuals and as a team. The team has created a network and support system to build up a strong ocean racing team for Canada to compete in international offshore races.
Wind Athlete’s support of this program has helped build the future of offshore sailing in Canada. With the recent sale of the O CANADA, the Canadian Ocean Racing Team is now bidding for a 2017 and 2019 Volvo Ocean Race team, first as a development team, then as an all-Canadian team in future editions. Donate to the program via Wind Athletes Canada to support the Canadian Volvo Ocean Race campaign and youth development programs.
The Canadian Ocean Racing team is always welcoming applications to the Aspiring Offshore Athletes program. Applicants to Canadian Ocean Racing’s AOA program must be a Canadian national between the ages of 21-35 and have some previous offshore experience. For more information and/or to apply, please visit: www.canadianoceanracing.com
THE COR TEAM
Morgen Watson, Founder and COO
Morgen Watson is an outdoor adventure enthusiast. Watson has logged over 100,000 offshore nM, and served as a watch leader onboard Henri Lloyd, 13-14 Clipper Round the World Race winner. In the Fall of 2014, Watson started making plans for his next adventure. As a result, Canadian Ocean Racing was founded. Watson has spent two years as co-skipper of O Canada logging competitive offshore racing and delivery miles. He is currently skipper of Hermes, a Pogo 12.50 for his international racing program Ocean Racers.
As COO, Watson is responsible for team direction, boat management and race prep. Watson is a co-founder of Canadian Ocean Racing and is always looking for ways to promote the sport and provide opportunities for other aspiring Canadian ocean sailors like himself.
Meg Reilly, PR & Partnership Manager
Meg Reilly is a marketing and communications professional with a big passion for sailing and the world’s oceans. Reilly left her coveted career on Madison Avenue to sail around the world in the Clipper 2013/14 Race. After winning the race, Reilly and teammate Morgen Watson launched the Canadian Ocean Racing program with former skipper Eric Holden. Since then, she has co-founded the international arm of Ocean Racers and founded North Cove Sailing in NYC.
Joel Ross, Director of Canadian Development
Joel Ross originally joined Canadian Ocean Racing as an Aspiring Offshore Athlete in Fall 2015. After meeting the team in Newport for a refit, Ross joined the team for a transatlantic from Newport to Le Havre, France. He there helped the team prepare for the Transat Jacques Vabre Race, then again joined the team in St. Barths for BtoB Race prep. Joel has since won Farr 30 Canadian Nationals in 2016 and competed with Ocean Racers in the Antigua Bermuda Race 2017.