The main lounge at the Royal Victoria Yacht Club was buzzing before and after the presentations. Swiftsure’s 3rd Annual Technical Night attracted sailors who came to hear about the care and feeding of propulsion and boat systems from Raven Marine’s John Nassichuk, while Todd Koroll, general manager of Vector Yacht Services spoke about engines and drives, and the inimitable Brent Jacobi, Blackline Marine’s Rigging & Metal Fabrication Manager charted a course through rigging and how to spot nasties before your stick falls off.

Don Prittie, general manager of Canoe Cove Marina & Boatyard introduced these three gents, sharing some of their backgrounds which helped put credence in each presenter’s topic. 

These are experts in their fields who each shared inexpensive ways to prevent more expensive problems – not your typical sales approach. But they’re deeply immersed in life on the water and are practical.

Prior to working with Raven Marine, John Nassichuk worked with the legendary custom boat builder Schooner Creek Boat Works in Portland, Oregon where Tom Wylie-designed yachts are built, including the beloved 70’ Rage as well as proficient 43’ local race yachts Hana Mari and Magic Carpet. John recommends maintenance gems; do NOT use plastic through-hulls and LOOK at your boat fittings while cleaning – if they’re green, they need a closer look. 

With many years experience with engines and sail drives, Todd Koroll recommends keeping a close watch on your boat fluids. Vector Yacht Services is able to send your oil to Edmonton for testing; it doesn’t cost a lot and can show if there’s inappropriate inclusion of biotics, metals and water. And on the topic of biotics, Todd doesn’t recommend them as additives – what they kill in your fuel can personally hurt you (most of us don’t need extra appendages) and clump together making a bad problem worse.







Brent Jacobi always has highly practical recommendations you can personally apply. Winches – clean them regularly, lubricate lightly. Been up to check out your spreaders lately? It’s the #1 reason for spar failures. Can you reef your main in 1 minute? Practise it in good weather and analyse if yours functions smoothly. Goosenecks should NOT have play. Blackline Marine is a specialist and they work (and teach) to the highest standard. 

The key message from the three gents, remarkable in its simplicity, is to use your eyes and ears, read your maintenance manual, and set boat maintenance as a pleasurable necessity that will protect you when things get poopy. Remember – “there is nothing – absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.”

Swiftsure greatly appreciates Canoe Cove Marine Community’s support; the Swiftsure Technical Night gives racers additional knowledge to make their boats race-ready. We also thank Commodore Gordon Wilkinson of race host Royal Victoria Yacht Club for his gracious closing remarks. 



Directions to Canoe Cove Marine Community: 2300 Canoe Cove Road, North Saanich, BC

Raven Marine: 250.655.3934 or

Yacht Brokers; Yacht Shipping; Yacht Care & Maintenance


Blackline Marine: 250.656.6616 or

Quadrant Marine Institute

Fibreglass & Gel Coat Repairs, Fabrications & Modifications

Painting & Refinishing

Seasonal Maintenance

Architectural Rigging

Metal Fabrication

Yacht Rigging


Vector Yacht Services: 250.656.5515 or

Boatyard, Parts, Service for: Mercury Marine, Suzuki, Volvo Penta, Cummins Mercruiser, Yanmar Marine, Caterpillar, Vacuflush/Sealand, Webast, Espar, Zodiac Marine, Arneson Surface Drives, UltraJet, and ZF Marine


Canoe Cove Marina & Boatyard; 250.656.5566 or

In addition to the above businesses, Canoe Cove Marina & Boatyard does:

Boat Haulouts, Short & Long Term Moorage, a Thrift Store, a Coffee Shop, a Pub Restaurant, a Manufacturer, Chandlery, Customs Dock,Yacht Sales, Fuel Dock, Laundry, Showers, Boat Builder, Canvas Shop, Marine Surveyor, Artist Studio, Boatshed Building/Maintenance, North Pacific Trawler Commissioning, Paddle Sport Rental, Lessons, Sales; Aluminum Fabrication; Vessel Maintenance; Water Taxi to Piers, Portland, Russell & Sidney Islands