Undergrad Sails Better Than Olympians

Claire Dennis '13 gleefully tacks her laser radial in light air.

Claire Dennis Had A Top American Performance At The Miami OCR On Wednesday

MIAMI, Fla. – Junior Claire Dennis is competing down at the Miami Olympic Classes Regatta this week against a competitive international laser radial fleet, which includes many Olympians.  All of the US Olympic representatives for 2012 are at the regatta; however, not many American teams had better combined scores than Dennis in yesterday's two races, especially if considering the difference in size and level of competition across the various classes. 

In breezy conditions, Dennis started the day with an eighth place finish and ended it with a first, her two best scores of the nine races sailed so far.  She is currently in 19th overall, making her the second American radial sailor behind the 2012 Olympic representative, Paige Railey. 

Meanwhile, Yale's Olympic-bound alumni, Sarah Lihan '10 and Stu McNay '05, are both currently sitting in sixth place in their respective fleets. Lihan and her teammate scored fifth and second in yesterday's two races.  McNay and his crew had an 11 and a seven.  In comparison to the fleet Dennis is racing in though, the men's and women's 470 fleets are small.  There are 22 boats in the men's 470 class and 15 boats in the women's.  Meanwhile the laser radial fleet has 60. 

Racing continues today and goes on through Saturday.  So far, the athletes at the regatta have experienced the full spectrum of wind speeds, from light and variable on day one to heavy-air, hiking conditions like yesterday.  For more details on the racing and to follow the results, go to the event website.       

Report filed by Chris Segerblom '14, Yale Sports Publicity