NEWPORT, R.I. – The No. 1 Yale coed sailing team defended its title and qualified for the ICSA Match Racing National Championship by winning the New England Match Race Championship held at Salve Regina this weekend. The Bulldogs also placed third at the Moody Trophy and URI and fourth at the Storm Trysail at Larchmont Yacht Club.
The Bulldogs had a slow start at the New England Match Racing Championship. Sailing unfamiliar Yngling's, the Bulldogs struggled with communication. But as senior Max Nickbarg noted, "communication was key throughout the regatta and as that improved everything else began to go our way." This was evident as the Bulldogs started beating better and better teams throughout the weekend.
Senior Chris Segerblom drove with sophomore Marly Isler and Nickbarg as crew. The team finished the initial round robin with a 5-2 record, seeding them third going into forward. Sunday began with the Bulldogs racing MIT in the quarterfinals, winning 2-1. Advancing to the semifinals against Roger Williams, Yale won again with a 3-1 record. This win assured the Bulldogs a berth to the ICSA Match Racing National Championship in St. Petersburg, Fla. this November. Facing Boston College in the finals, the Bulldogs were swift to reclaim their title as New England match racing champions, winning 2-0.
The Moody Trophy had ideal sailing conditions all weekend. Both days saw a consistent northeasterly, with Saturday's breeze gusting up to 18 knots, while Sunday's was lighter. Ten races were completed in each division.
Freshman skipper Ian Barrows with crews junior Katherine Gaumond and freshman Meredith Megarry finished second in A division, only three points behind first place. Freshman team skipper Mitchell Kiss and crew Natalya Doris finished ninth in B division. This combined effort put the team in a podium finish with third place overall. Junior skipper Graham Landy offered guidance as a coach for the underclassmen this weekend, and both freshmen skippers showed great improvement throughout the weekend, especially in their starts and boat speed.
Sailing a J105 named Liquid Courage, the Bulldogs at the Storm Trysail Regatta placed fourth in a fleet of eleven. With many of the sailors new to big boat racing, this was an impressive result. Due to dangerous conditions, racing was cancelled on Sunday.
Next weekend Yale will return to double handed dinghies, sailing the Hoyt Intersectional at Brown.
Report filed by Katherine Gaumond '15, Yale Sports Publicity