2019 Thistle Nationals


Women & Junior's - July 21

National Championship - July 22 TO 26

Support Nationals and Win Sails and Other Cool Stuff

Buy a ticket to our huge nationals raffle. We are raffling off:

  • North Sails
  • Nautalytics Electronic Compass
  • $300 gift certificate to GPS Canvas
  • Full set of crew gear from Coral Reef Sailing
  • Set of spinnaker, jib and mainsheets from Fisheries Supply in Seattle
  • Rudder, centerboard, and spinnaker pole covers from Sailing Inc in Cleveland 


Enter the raffle

why drive all the way to SANDPOINT?



Sandpoint is one of those special places. If you have been waiting for the "PLACE" to make a long drive to a nationals this just might be the year.

Sandpoint is a former mining and logging town and is now best known as a vacation location. The town is located between the Cabinet and Selkirk Mountains, on one of the largest lakes west of the Mississippi, and within 9 miles of the second largest ski area (good info just in case it snows in July) in Idaho. With convenient hiking, camping, good food, and a rich music and art culture, Sandpoint, in the summer, has a lot to offer as a location for the 2019 Thistle Nationals.

The sailing will be more small lake than ocean but the lake is still large enough to provide reliable breeze. Plan on a little bit of everything. And, you can see the bottom of the lake at 20 feet and, in July, it is warm enough to swim in. This will also be one of those Nationals where - depending on where you stay -  you will be able to park your car at the beginning of the week and not touch it until the regatta is over. Shopping, groceries, and dining are all with-in walking distance of the sailing site. 

The regatta will be hosted by Sandpoint Sailing Association (SSA) and the Seattle Thistle fleet at held City Beach Park. City Beach is beautiful public beach located in the center of the city. Founded in 1996, SSA has hosted a number of district and regional sailing events and has a proud history of sailing and fun on the water. There are convenient hotels, condos, and camping to accommodate most budgets.   See below for housing options.

One note - we already have 55 boats pre-registered and Sandpoint is definitely a resort town. It gets busy in the summer. If you are thinking of attending please be sure to register soon and make reservations early. 


Site Content



Click below for the registration page. Early entry expires on March 15th.


Where to Stay in Sandpoint

Lots of options from $10 a night camping to waterfront - and walkable to the sailing site - condo bliss.

where to stay

Regatta Logistics

Click HERE to learn all you need to know about getting here, on-site registration, launching, storage and leaving (if you still want to after a week in Sandpoint - many people don't).

details, details

Sailing in Sandpoint

Wind trends and other things

Find out more

Regatta Shirts, Etc Pre-Order

We will be using Coral Reef Sailing Apparel for all the regatta gear. We will only have a limited amount of gear at the regatta so you may want to order ahead to make sure you get the sizes and styles you want. 

Click for Gear Pre-Order

Where to Stay

There Are Lots of Options

Sandpoint is a vacation town.  Last minute reservations WILL be difficult - especially for in-town Air BnBs, the Edgewater Hotel and the Season's Condos - which are right at the sailing venue.  
Our recommendation  - make a reservation now - you can always cancel. 


We have reserved a group camp area for tent campers at the Bonner County Fairgrounds Camp Sites . Currently all the RV sites are sold out but there is unlimited  tent camping and room to park an RV - just no plug-ins. There are, of course, showers, wifi, and plenty of space to roam around.

The campground is about 3 miles from the sailing venue while still being close to shopping and restaurants. There is a dump station on site.

Tent camping is  a $10 per night.   Tent  camping  does  not require  a deposit  but does  require  a reservation and you can make a reservations by calling or emailing the contact below - let her know you are affiliated with the Thistle Nationals under the name of "Chambers".  

Hotels and Condos: 

For the non-campers you have lots of options - several of which are with in walking distance of the sailing venue. In fact, the Edgewater Hotel and the Season's Condos are right at the sailing venue. A big advantage of these locations is you get a parking spot - a nice thing to have. The other - the view is fantastic.

For the Edgewater Hotel they have a block of rooms reserved for us. You must ask for the Thistle Nationals. 

Another great condo option is Condo del Sol - a seven minute walk to the sailing venue. There are other convenient options as well.

For more info about the best Condo option for you contact our official Condo housing sponsor - Sandpoint Vacation Rentals (208) 263-7570 or www.sandpointvacationrentals.com). Tell them you are with the Nationals. 

If you want to stay right at the sailing site - your boat literally at the back door of your hotel room - please contact the Best Western Edgewater Hotel: http://www.bestwesternedgewater.com. The Edgewater Hotel has a block of rooms reserved for us. You must ask for the Thistle Nationals room block.

Another option, still in town - about a five minute walk from the sailing site -  the La Quinta Inn - Sandpoint. It is near the sailing, the restaurants, and grocery stores: http://www.laquintasandpoint.com/

A great resource for other options - many still in town: https://www.sandpointonline.com/visitor/index.html


The Regatta Schedule


Schedule of Events

Friday, July 19th, 2019

  • 11.00 AM to 8.00 PM - Measurement and Registration at the Bonner County Fairgrounds.

Saturday, July 20th, 2019

  • 9.00 AM to 6.00 PM – Measurement and Registration at the Bonner County Fairgrounds
  • 1.00 PM - North Sails & Quantum Sails Clinic. Meet under the tent, followed by a huge number of short races.
  • 8.00 PM - Gather at the 219er  - Sandpoint's HIGH CLASS dive bar

Sunday, July 21st, 2019

  • 9.00 AM to 4.00 PM - Measurement and Registration at Bonner County Farigrounds
  • 9.30 AM - Warning signal - Woman & Youth Championship
  • 2.00 PM -  Possible practice Race
  • 6.00 PM - Women’s and Juniors’s Awards, Competitor’s Meeting and BBQ on the beach

Monday, July 22nd, 2019

  • 9:00 AM - Race 1 and 2
  • Post Race – Race winner debrief/keg and open bar
  • 6.00 PM - Sailing and Rules Trivia Night – McDuff’s Brew Hall

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2019

  • 9:00 AM - Race 3
  • President/Championship Fleet split
  • Post Race – Race winner debrief/keg and open bar
  • Dinner on your own.

Wednesday July 24th. 2019

  • 9:00 AM - Race 4 and 5 and President’s Division Race 1 and 2
  • Post Race – Race winner debrief/keg and open bar 
  • 6.00 PM – Contra Dancing and Food Trucks at Matchwood Brewery

Thursday July 25th, 2019

  • 9:00 AM - Race 6 and President’s Division Race 3
  • Post Race – Race winner debrief/keg and open bar
  • Dinner on your own
  • 7.30 PM - Dance  Night at  The  219er (Our local high class dive bar) for Bum Jungle. Brin g your  Dance  Shoes.

Friday July 26th, 2019

  • 9:00 AM - Race 7 and President’s Division Race 4 - no start after 2.30 PM
  • Post Race – Haul Out
  • 6:00 PM Banquet – at Trinity on the beach

Regatta Flags and Boat Storage

Bring Your Flags - And Other Details About Boat Storage

We want to make sure everyone understands boat storage during the regatta. Like a few other nationals - most notably Sayville - boats will be stored on the beach in assigned spaces at City Beach Park. Trailers will be stored off-site at the County Fairgrounds during the regatta.

All the boats stored along the beach will create quite a spectacle for all the tourists who often frequent other parts of the beach. Your boat will be lined up in the area west and north of the large swim area and directly in-front of the Edgewater Hotel. 

So, a couple of thoughts to make sure this works well for everyone.  First, an important note for all dog lovers - dogs are not allowed at the park. Not even on a leash. We are sorry about this because we all love dogs too. 

For boat storage during the regatta only about 33% of the designated spots will be right along the water. The rest of the spots will require the boats to be moved down to the water for launching - not far but far enough that we will need to put those boats on a dolly to get them in the water. We will have several dollies on hand to make this easy.

If you have a dolly – particularly if it has wheels that work in the sand - please bring it. You will not have to wait for the shared dollies and this will help minimize wait times for others. It will also protect your boat's bottom. Other options to protect your boat bottom include bottom covers and/or your basic swim floats or other padding. A dolly is certainly not required.

A note about security. This is a public beach with public access. We will fence off the boat storage area and believe the area is secure but there is no guarantee. One recommendation is to bring one of those large plastic jobsite tool (dock boxes) boxes for all your boat stuff. These can be locked  and also purchased at Home Depot or Lowe’s for pretty cheap ($65).

Finally, if you have them, we want you to bring regatta flags. You know, the ones you won for winning your club championships. Since the boats will be on full display right in front of the hotel, we thought it would be cool to have everyone bring flags and hoist them after racing each day. It will look good for the tourists and we can all get some cool pictures with the boats, flags, lake and mountains in the background. 


About Us

How to Get Here from There


Flying: The nearest major airport - about 85 miles is Spokane. Lots fo flights through Seattle, Salt Lake, Minneapolis or Denver. 

Driving: https://www.google.com/maps/place/Sandpoint+City+Beach+Park/@48.2729824,-116.5434568,17z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x5363d6c49683c93d:0x59b6991355e517c7!8m2!3d48.2729789!4d-116.5412681

July wind direction and speed history

Sailing in Sandpoint

Additional Information

More info coming soon. Click on the image above for historical wind data for Sandpoint

Learn More

For more info click on this link to SailFlow. This monitoring station is at the end of the pier adjacent to the sailing center.

Find out more

Contact Us

More Information

Wayne Pignolet and Chris Chambers - Regatta Co-Chairs

Thistle Nationals 2019

1308 Fir Street, Sandpoint, Idaho 83864, United States

(208) 262-6997 - Wayne (208) 290-2500 - Chris