BRANFORD, Conn. – This weekend, the No. 2 Yale coed sailing team won the New England Dinghy Championship this weekend and qualified for the ICSA National Semifinals in June.
Sailing at their home venue, the Bulldogs arrived at Short Beach on Saturday to a light Northeasterly. The race committee was able to start four races in A division and three races in B division before the breeze completely shut off. A much stronger ten to sixteen knot Southeasterly filled in during the afternoon to allow for four more races in each division.
Yale finished the day in first overall, but the points were still close with Boston College and Dartmouth just behind in second and third.
Sunday was sailed in a shifty eight to thirteen knot Northwesterly that moved farther west and grew stronger as the day went on. In trying conditions for the race committee, the regatta ended with 14 races in each division.
Yale won the regatta by a large margin, with 111 points while second-place Dartmouth finished with 174. Yale excelled with its consistency across the weekend, putting up impressive scores in all types of conditions and both fleets of boats.
Junior Graham Landy sailed A division with crews senior Eugenia Custo Greig in the stronger breeze and junior Katherine Gaumond in the lighter velocities. They finished first in their division, twenty points ahead of second place. These sailors only finished outside the top five twice during all fourteen races, a feat particularly noteworthy given the depth of A division in NEISA.
Senior Chris Segerblom with sophomore crew Charlotte Belling started in B division. After sailing three races in the morning on Saturday, freshman duo skipper Ian Barrows and crew Meredith Megarry switched in. Senior crew Amanda Salvesen substituted in during the heavier breeze in the powered up Z420. The points in B division were incredibly close for the first half of the regatta, but Yale was able to extend away from the pack and win B division by 19 points.
Coach Bill Healy said the key to the Bulldogs success was simple: "We had great starts and really good speed. And we did not foul or start over early in a single race." By avoid big mistakes, the Bulldogs were able to execute and sail a clean regatta and earn the win.
In fact, Yale has not won the New England Dinghy Championship since 1981. With this victory, Yale has also qualified for the ICSA National Semifinals, the next step towards qualifying for the national championships.
The Bulldogs will now not compete collegiately until the ICSA Team Race National Championship at St. Mary's College of Maryland in June. The sailors will stay on campus and train until then.
Report filed by Katherine Gaumond '15, Yale Sports Publicity