Sept. 14, 2008
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The No. 3 Bulldog sailors opened the fall season with a strong performance by finishing in third place at the Harry Anderson Trophy Intersectional hosted by Yale at the McNay Family Sailing Center on Saturday and Sunday. The team also competed at the Pine Trophy Sloop Intersectional and the Southern Series One event.
The Harry Anderson Trophy Intersectional, the opening regatta of the fall collegiate sailing season, featured 20 teams from around the country, including nine of the top 10 ranked teams in the country. The event featured very light winds and sailing in 420s, preventing a full schedule of racing from being completed. Two races in A Division and one in B Division were completed on Saturday. Including Sunday's racing, only five races in each division were completed due to the wind conditions.
The lack of races, though, did not prevent the Bulldogs from showing why they are ranked as the third-best team in the nation. The Bulldogs sealed up third place at the regatta with a 68-point performance, only 13 points behind the winners from No. 7 Roger Williams. Defending champion No. 1 Boston College finished second with 58 points. The Bulldogs also finished third at the event in 2007.
In A Division, junior captain Thomas Barrows and sophomore Blair Belling placed fifth with 34 points, only two points out of second. The duo had three very consistent races, placing three times in the top four places.
B Division placed fifth overall with a 34-point total. Skippering duties were split by junior John Kempton (race 1), freshman Joseph Morris and senior Jane Macky (races 3-5). Crewing for the Bulldogs were senior Adriane Levin (race 1), senior Grace Becton (race 1) and junior Marla Menninger (races 3-5). The B Division squad placed in the top-five places in three of the five races.
Barrows felt that the overall team effort was strong.
"I was happy with the way that we performed," Barrows said. "Jane came into the regatta and performed strongly for us. With only five races in the regatta, the event is not much of an indicator and I feel that we could have won it with a few more races. Right now, our focus is just on improving and doing better every weekend."
The team also competed at the Pine Trophy Sloop Intersectional hosted by the Coast Guard Academy in the Colgate 26 keelboat on the Thames River in New London, Conn. No racing was completed on Saturday due to a lack of wind, but seven races were completed on Sunday in a three-to-seven knot shifty breeze in misty conditions. The team of sophomore skipper Andrew Kurzrok and crew senior Caleb Dorfman (main, traveler and spinnaker), junior John Vrolyk (bow and jib) and freshman Rob Struckett (pit and jib) placed 10th with 58 points. No. 19 SUNY Maritime Academy, a very experienced team in keelboat sailing, won the event with 13 points.
Even though the team did not place as high as it hoped, the squad felt it was still a productive experience.
"I felt that we learned a lot over the course of the regatta, especially about how small differences can result in big gains on the race course," Struckett said. "Our teamwork improved over the weekend and we saw how practicing in keelboats is important to performing well in them. It was nice to have the chance to sail in keelboats as opposed to the dinghies we normally sail."
The team also competed at the Southern Series One event hosted by Roger Williams where the team placed ninth with 96 points over six races in each division. The racing featured very puffy conditions and large amounts of current. Senior Emmet Smith and junior Rebecca Jackson sailed in A Division and placed 11th with 60 points. Freshmen Genoa Warner and Jared Shenson sailed in B Division and placed fifth with 36 points. The team felt as though they improved at boat handling in the FJ and reacting to the strong current at the venue. Warner and Shenson, who were competing in their first collegiate regatta, improved throughout the competition and the won the final race of the event.
The Bulldogs are next competing at the Hatch Brown Trophy at MIT, the Lake Champlain Open at Vermont, and Southern Series Two, Donaghy Bowl at Salve Regina. All events begin on Saturday.
Report filed by Caleb Dorfman '09, Yale Sports Publicity