NEW LONDON, Conn. – The No. 1 Yale coed sailing team won the Southern New England Team Race this weekend at Connecticut College. The team also placed sixth at the Mystic Lake Team Race held at Tufts.
The Southern New England Team Race was the first team race the Bulldogs have sailed since the St. Mary's Team Race, which took place before spring break training. The Bulldogs tied for fourth at the St. Mary's Team Race, earning them a seventh-place ranking in the most recent Sail One Design Team Race Rankings. Because of this disappointing finish, the Bulldogs were looking to redeem themselves this weekend and defend their title as Southern New England Team Race Champions.
Representing Yale were skippers senior Cameron Cullman, junior captain Chris Segerblom and sophomore Graham Landy. These three were joined by crews senior Heather May, juniors Eugenia Custo Greig and Marlena Fauer, and freshman Charlotte Belling.
Saturday started with an unstable, light Northwesterly. The Bulldogs had difficulty with the unpredictable conditions, especially in the morning. They also struggled with spacing off the starting line. However, their performance improved as the wind shifted to the Southwest and built to 13 knots. The team ended Saturday with a 5-3 record.
On Sunday, the Bulldogs put together a stellar performance to win the regatta, losing only one race throughout the day. The Bulldogs finished the first round robin with an 8-3 record, and went 4-1 in the top-six round robin to end the regatta with a 12-4 record and clinch the win. Landy commented on their Sunday performance saying, "in the steadier wind we were able to have better starts and use our speed more effectively." With the top competition, Segerblom noted that "the round amongst the top-six teams was really competitive and made for some exciting racing." With this win, the Bulldogs proved that they could compete with the best teams in the country and come out on top.
Farther North, Yale competed in the Mystic Lake Team Race at Tufts. The Bulldogs sent skippers senior Emily Billing, junior Max Nickbarg, and freshman Marly Isler with crews junior Amanda Salvesen, sophomore Sarah Smith and freshman Emily Johnson.
The competitors sailed in a shifty Northerly with big velocity variations and were able to complete one full round robin and most of a second round robin on Saturday. The second round robin was finished on Sunday in a light Southerly. A third round robin was also sailed on Sunday, after the wind shifted to the West. The Bulldogs finished sixth at the tricky event, with a record of 7-14. Nickbarg commented that the team "did a good job of staying in the mix of every race" allowing them to make "unexpected comebacks."
Next weekend Yale will continue team racing, sailing the Marchiando-Friis Trophy co-hosted by MIT and Tufts.
Report filed by Katherine Gaumond '15, Yale Sports Publicity