Meet Our Race Officials

Katie Coleman Nicoll | Chief Judge

Katie Coleman Nicoll

Chief Judge

Katie grew up sailing MIT Tech Dinghies, Albacores, Lightnings, and Lasers on Lake Erie. Marrying and moving to Toronto, she and her husband bought a J/24 and actively campaigned it in regional, national and international competitions, along with their two children. She now helms a J/35 in club races.

Katie is a National Judge and Umpire and runs Club Judge Courses for Sail Canada and many other professional development courses. She is also chair of the Ontario Judges Committee, sits on the Ontario Appeals Committee and is a member of the Umpires and Judges Sub Committees.

Luke Porter | Race Officer Inshore Course

Luke Porter

Principle Race Officer | PHRF-NS B Course

Luke is the Race Director at the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron, a position held since 2014. In that time, he has run innumerable races, including World, North American, and Canadian Championships, all while supporting the largest Yacht Club in Atlantic Canada.

Luke maintains a Regional Race Officer and Regional Judge certification with Sail Canada.

John Abel | Race Officer

John Abel

Race Officer | One Design Course

John is a Canadian International Race Officer who calls British Columbia home. Prior to his retirement, John was the president of BC sailing but now spends his days sailing on his Beneteau 49, which some of you might remember as the former Festivus, with his wife Judie. John has an impressive sailing resume which speaks for itself. He is the PRO for the Melges 24 World Championships and will be a course race officer for the 49er, 49erFX, and Nacra 17 World Championships in Hubbards this fall. John is a hard guy to miss in the crowd so make sure you take an opportunity to stop by and say hello this year to the race officer for the One Design Course.

Tom Clarke | Race Officer Distance Course

Tom Clarke

Race Officer | PHRF-NS A Course

Tom started sailing in Toronto when he was 9 in Optimists, including a couple of Worlds in France and Portugal. He moved into Fireballs at Junior sailing, then International 14’s, a 470 and a Tornado. His family boats were two vintage 8-metres from the 1930s, which he campaigned on Lake Ontario and Scandinavia, including four World Championships, winning two, with one as helm. Tom crewed on various IOR boats starting on the foredeck and moving back to jib and main trim over the years. Highlights included the ’83 SORC and Admiral’s Cup, two Canada’s Cups, the NYYC Invitational and a couple of years of events in Chicago.

Tom started race committee work in Bermuda in 2017 and received his IRO qualification in 2019. Tom has been doing race management in Bermuda and Canada, including the 2022 49er/FX/Nacra Worlds in St. Margaret’s Bay and St. Maarten, UK and the US.

Trish Finlay | Race Officer Classics

Trish Finlay

Race Officer

Trish Finlay grew up sailing in Bedford, where she raced both dinghies and keelboats. As a teenager, working with her mother, she helped start races and ran a mark boat for younger sailors. In the mid 90’s she moved to Chester with her family where she taught Junior Sailing at Chester Yacht Club and has worked as a race officer for Chester Race Week, Opti Jam and various other regattas hosted at Chester Yacht Club for over ten years.

Peter van Muyden | Race Officer Bluenose Course

Peter van Muyden

Race Officer | Bluenose Course

Peter van Muyden, from Alberta, is coming back as the race officer for the Bluenose class.  As an International Race Officer with extensive international race management experience over the last 30 years he will bring his knowledge of high-level races to the Bluenose racing circle.  Peter is a member of the World Sailing Race Management Sub Committee and during his race management career has run three World championships in Nova Scotia.

Pat Nelder | Race Officer Classics Course

Pat Nelder

Race Officer | Classics Course

Pat is our Race Officer for the Classics Course. Pat was our On-Water Chair of Helly Hansen Chester Race Week from 2017 to 2023.

For more than 20 years, Pat Nelder has been one of the biggest promoters of sailing and boating in Atlantic Canada. Nelder, who served as the executive director of Boating Atlantic, formerly the Atlantic Marine Trades Association (AMTA), retired from that role in 2022.

Nelder says: “I think the best part of Race Week is all the energy of everyone coming to race, I think that’s so much fun. Whether you’re attending it or working it, it’s a super event!”

David Borrowman | Scorer

David Borrowman


David Borrowman grew up sailing dinghies at the Pointe Claire Y.C. His keelboat sailing has been mainly cruising with some racing experience crewing on Lake Ontario. Since 1998 he has volunteered on the Results Crew at CORK, including helping to write the Scoring Manual. On moving to Chester he has scored Opti Jam in ‘18 & ‘19, and CRW in ‘18, missing 2019 while scoring during Laser 4.7 Youth Worlds at CORK.