NORFOLK, V.A. (May 29, 2018) – Today was the first day of the Gill College Sailing Coed National Championship Semifinals, hosted by Old Dominion University. The top 36 college sailing teams in the nation are vying for 18 spots in the championship finals, which will begin on Thursday, May 31.
The semifinals are divided into two fleets, an Eastern and Western, each with 18 teams. The top nine teams from each fleet will advance to the finals on Thursday. The sailors are racing on windward leeward courses with four legs in FJs and Z420s. Today the Eastern fleet sailed FJs and the Western fleet sailed Z420s. The plan is for the fleets to switch boats tomorrow.
The day began with a delay due to rain and no wind, but racing got underway around 11 a.m. in very light winds from the southwest. One race was completed in the Eastern and Western A-division and there was another delay when the wind shifted to the north and a second race was started just before noon. Temperatures were in the high 70s and humid under cloudy skies.
The wind continued to be on and off all day as did the rain. In times when there was enough wind to race, it remained pretty light around 5 knots. The race committee was able to complete four races in both fleets. Racing finished up around 5 p.m.
There are 14 more races to go in the Semifinal rounds tomorrow to determine the top nine places in each fleet. Those top 18 teams will advance to the Finals.
Hobart and William Smith Colleges is leading the Eastern fleet with 26 points and College of Charleston is in second with 35 points. Right behind Charleston is Roger Williams University in third place with 37 points closely followed by the rest of the fleet.
“It was tough and trying conditions today,” says Scott Ikle, head coach for Hobart and William Smith Colleges. “When everyone came ashore for the breaks we tried to keep it light and not talk about the racing. I think we sailed conservatively today, which is hard to do because it’s easy to take chances on a day like today.”
“The game plan is to just make it through [the Semifinals] and get to the next round,” says Ikle, “the next round is the one that counts.”
Sailing for Hobart and William Smith Colleges is: Greiner Hobbs '18 with Lindsey Kloc '19 in A-division and Hector Guzman '20 with Maya Weber '20 in B-division.
On top of the Western fleet is Dartmouth College who has 33 points followed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology with 36 points in second and Boston College is sitting in third place with 40 points.
“The funny thing is that we sail in these conditions a lot on Lake Mascoma [at Dartmouth],” says Justin Assad, head coach for Dartmouth College, “but we are used to some more shiftiness in New England. Today we executed our starts well and stuck to our game plan and stayed away from risks. We try and look at the big picture and analyze where our threats are.”
“Tonight the sailors will lay low, they are still in school studying, so will stay calm and we are looking forward to racing tomorrow,” says Assad.
Sailing for Dartmouth is: Christopher Williford '19 with Rebecca McElvain '19 in A-division and Duncan Williford '18 with Paige Clarke '20 in B-division.
There are a lot of races to get through tomorrow. The first warning for racing is at 10 a.m. tomorrow. No race can start after 5 p.m.
Top Nine Eastern Semifinals (4 races):
1. Hobart and William Smith Colleges, 26
2. College of Charleston, 35
3. Roger Williams University, 37*
4. Old Dominion University, 37*
5. Yale University, 37*
6. George Washington University, 38
7. U.S. Naval Academy, 40
8. U.S. Coast Guard Academy, 67
9. Boston University, 78
* Head-to-head tiebreaker
Top Nine Western Semifinal (4 races):
1. Dartmouth College, 33
2. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 36
3. Boston College, 40
4. University of South Florida, 45
5. Georgetown University, 48
6. St. Mary’s College of Maryland, 53
7. Stanford University, 56
8. University of Rhode Island, 64
9. Fordham University, 74
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/
Dan Egan, of Degan Media, will provide some live coverage during the events sponsored by US Sailing, streaming from the event website. Live coverage will continue May 30 for last day of Gill Dinghy Semifinals, and both days of Finals May 31 and June 1.
Follow the events via the regatta app from US Sailing, learn how to sign up here: ICSA Nationals App
Additional social media updates will be available throughout the events on the regatta website.
Photo Credit: Colin Grey Voight, https://colingreyvoigt.smugmug.com/College-Sailing-Nationals-2018
Facebook and Other Social Media Outlets: Colin Grey Voigt
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”.