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Five Yale Alumni To Compete in the World Sailing Championships

49ers just after the starting gun
49ers just after the starting gun

AARHUS, DENMARK – Several Yale sailing alumni are poised to compete in the sailing world championships beginning on August 2nd and ending on August 12th. The Yale sailing program is famous for its alumni participation in the Olympic classes, with alumni having competed in the Olympics fourteen times, bringing home six medals. The sailing world championships, where all the Olympic classes compete in the same venue simultaneously, are held every four years – offsetting the Games by two years. They are a benchmark of progress for many Olympic hopefuls on their paths to Tokyo.


There are five Yale alumni competing in the event. Veteran Olympian Stu McNay '05 will compete in the 470 class. He was fifth at the last iteration of the event in 2014 and fourth at the 2016 Olympics in Rio. McNay's goals likely lie on the podium.


New to the Olympic scene for this quadrennial will be 49er sailors Ian Barrows '17 and Mitchell Kiss '17 sailing together in the Olympic two person skiff class. Barrows and Kiss had very successful years as undergrads, winning five national championships at the collegiate level. Similarly, they have found success on the world stage as well. Barrows won the Youth Olympic Games when he was in high school, and in the same year Kiss finished fourth at the ISAF Youth Worlds in the laser radial. However, the team is new to the 49er class, a boat that requires years of preparation in order to even compete on the world stage. Two years into their campaign, this event will be a good indicator of where they are on their journey to Tokyo.


Even newer to the Olympic world is recent graduate Malcolm Lamphere '18. Lamphere, a collegiate laser national champion, continues to compete in the laser, which he has been sailing since high school. The boat is not new to him, but the level of competition is. This will be his first world championship since starting his campaign.


Conditions look like they could be shifty, offshore with some moderate pressure. That has tended to benefit Yale sailors in the past. 470 racing begins tomorrow, lasers begin on Friday, and the 49ers will start on Saturday. Two races per day are planned for the 470 and laser classes and three per day for the 49ers. At the end of the series, a medal race will be sailed. Only the top ten qualify into the medal race, and it counts for double points.


Tune in to the event at


Report filed by Nic Baird '19, Yale Sports Publicity