The Intercollegiate Sailing Association’s (ICSA) three spring national championships, Sperry College Sailing Women’s National Semifinal and Final Championships, LaserPerformance College Sailing Team Race National Championship, and the Gill College Sailing National Semifinal and Final Championships commence in one week on Tuesday, May 22. The Women’s event will last for four days immediately followed by the Team Race championship on May 26, lasting for three days and the Coed championship on May 29, lasting for four days.
The three events will be hosted by Old Dominion University at the ODU Sailing Center in Norfolk, Va. These championships are the culmination of two seasons of intense competition and include the top schools from across the nation vying for the championship titles. Immediately following the racing for each of the regattas there will be a trophy ceremony honoring the top finishers.
The events will kick off with the Intercollegiate Sailing Association Annual Meeting, held on Monday, May 21 at Old Dominion at 11:30 a.m. where the ICSA Hall of Fame Honorees will be officially announced.
This year will be the second year that in lieu of competitors meetings involving all of the sailors; coaches and/or team representatives are invited to pre-regatta briefings at the sailing center before each event on May 21, May 25 and May 28, at 6 p.m.
Racing is scheduled to begin for the Sperry Women’s Championship on Tuesday, May 22 at 10 a.m. The sailors will sail LaserPerformance Club Flying Juniors (FJs) and LaserPerformance Z420s, on the waters of the Elizabeth River.
The first two days of racing will be the Semifinals, which is divided into two 18-team regattas. These teams have qualified from their conferences to compete in this portion of the championship. The top nine teams from each group will then advance to the Finals Round – an 18-boat regatta, which will take place on the last two days of the championship, May 24-25. This is the third time that the Women’s Semifinal event will include 36 boats, in the past there have only been 28 competing in this portion of the Championship.
“We are excited to be hosting these events,” says Mitch Brindley, head coach for Old Dominion University and ICSA president. “Our team is all in to do a great job and has been working to get the boats and facilities set up for the regattas. The University has also been supportive to make all of this happen,” he says. The last time that ODU hosted the Sperry Women’s event was in 2007 and the last time they hosted all three events was in 1985.
“In the past the Mid-Atlantic conference has divided the nationals events between venues, but I think it’s better for the events to all be in once place, so competitors don’t need to travel around,” says Brindley, “It may not be easiest on the host, but it’s best for the event.”
Following the Sperry Women’s Nationals is the LaserPerformance Team Race Nationals beginning Saturday, May 26. The first warning is scheduled for 10 a.m. sixteen of the country’s best team race teams have qualified to compete in the event. Sailors will be competing in FJs and Z420s on the Elizabeth River near the sailing center.
The first round of racing is a single round robin with all 16 teams competing against each other. The top eight from this round will advance to a single “championship” round robin followed by a “final four” round robin, which will only be sailed in Z420s. The top three teams and national champions will be determined from the final four.
The Gill Championship will begin after the LaserPerformance Team Race Championship on Tuesday, May 29 at 10 a.m. Sailors will again compete in FJs and Z420s on the Elizabeth River as close to the sailing center as the tide will allow.
Similar to the Sperry Women’s championship, the first two days of racing will be a Semifinal regatta, which will include 36 of the top teams in the country that qualified from their respective conferences to compete. This Semifinal event is divided into two 18-team rounds.
The top nine teams in each Semifinal round will advance to the Finals round, an 18-boat regatta on the last two days of the championship, May 31 and June 1. This will determine the top three podium spots and name the national champion.
“We are ready to get started with the regattas,” says Brindley, “Our team is ready to run the events, but also compete in them. We expect to see all types of conditions throughout the regattas, including different wind directions, speeds, some sea breeze and a front or two over the course of the two weeks. Generally we have good college sailing conditions around 8 to 12 knots of wind.”
Live coverage from Dan Egan, of Degan Media, will be sponsored by US Sailing, during the National Championship events. The coverage schedule is set to include May 25 for the final day of Sperry Women’s, May 27 and 28 for the final round of eight and final four of LaserPerformance Team Racing, May 30 for last day of Gill Dinghy Semifinals, and both days of Finals May 31 and June 1.. Additional live coverage and social media updates will be available throughout the events on the regatta website.
To learn more about the teams competing in all of the events and to follow the racing and results visit the event website: http://2018nationals.collegesailing.org/
Colin Voigt (https://colingreyvoigt.smugmug.com/) will be providing photos for these events.
Contact: Jennifer Mitchell |Toile à Voile for ICSA | firstname.lastname@example.org | 970-216-7072 m.
The ICSA sponsors and partners through the 2017-2018 season are: LaserPerformance (www.laserperformance.com), title sponsor of “LaserPerformance Men’s and Women’s Singlehanded National Championship”, title sponsor of “LaserPerformance College Sailing Team Race National Championship” and Official Boat Supplier of the ICSA Spring National Championships. Sperry (www.sperry.com), title sponsor of the “Sperry College Sailing Women’s National Championship”. Gill North American (gillna.com), title sponsor of “The Gill College Sailing National Championship”. Quantum Sail Design Group (www.quantumsails.com), official sponsor of the “Quantum Women’s College Sailor of the Year”. Marlow Ropes (www.marlowropes.com), presenting sponsor of the “Marlow Ropes College Sailor of the Year Award” and “Official Rope of College Sailing”. US Sailing (www.ussailing.org), “The Robert H. Hobbs Sportsman of the Year Sponsored by US Sailing”.