ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The No. 3 Yale coed sailing team won its first fleet race of the season: the Truxtun Umstead Intersectional hosted by the US Naval Academy. This is the second year in a row the Bulldogs have returned from the "Trux" as champions.
Saturday began with a long wind delay. Many races started during the day but all were abandoned because of lack of wind. However, the race committee remained patient and was able to start racing at 4:30 p.m., and continued to run races until 6:30 p.m. Wind filled in at about eight to ten knots from the northwest and four races were sailed in each division.
The Bulldogs struggled with the first day, ending Saturday in fourth place overall and over 30 points out of first place. However, with four divisions and many more races on Sunday, the Bulldogs were ready to comeback and defend their title.
Sunday began with a protest hearing between Yale and Washington College about a dispute in a Saturday B division race which Yale won. Then with a shifty northeasterly starting at 12 knots but slowly decreasing throughout the day, eight races were sailed in each division. In the below 40-degree weather the Bulldogs staged their comeback. The points were tight between Yale and Brown going into the final D division race, but Yale held onto its lead and yet again won the largest intersectional of the spring season.
Yale's excellent overall finish came from great individual performances in each division. Sophomore skipper Graham Landy with crew Heather May sailed in both FJ's and 420's and won the deeply competitive A division. Sailing doublehanded boats in B division, junior captain Chris Segerblom sailed with freshman crew Charlotte Belling for races one through four on Saturday and sophomore crew Katherine Gaumond in races five through twelve on Sunday. Segerblom, alongside Belling and Gaumond, finished 7th in B division.
Yale is known as a singlehanded powerhouse and proved that reputation was true by dominating C and D division in Lasers. Both Laser sailors, senior Cameron Cullman in Full Rigs and senior Claire Dennis in Radials, are former national champions and that experience showed through the weekend. Cullman placed second in C division, only nine points out of first. Cullman attributed his success to "playing the shifts instead of the fleet" since breeze direction was so volatile. Dennis won D division. This Trux was Dennis's 16th regatta at the US Naval Academy during her collegiate career and her comfort with the venue was evident in her success.
With this victory, the Bulldogs will now look forward to more fleet racing next weekend, sailing for the Owen Trophy at the US Naval Academy and the Boston Dinghy Cup held by Harvard and MIT. The Bulldogs won both those trophies last year as well, and will again be looking to repeat those top performances.
Report filed by Katherine Gaumond '15, Yale Sports Publicity