ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The No. 1 Yale women's sailing team finished fourth at the Navy Spring Women's Regatta this past weekend. It was the second regatta of the Bulldogs' spring season and it marks the beginning of their two-week spring break.
The team left the snowstorm in New Haven behind and drove to Annapolis on Friday in order to get a full night's rest before the US Naval Academy's 9 a.m. regatta report time. Upon arrival to the Naval Academy, the Bulldogs were greeted by 12 knots of wind from the northwest which is an ideal direction for sailing on the Severn River. The race committee was able to complete four races in A division and 3 in B division before the northwesterly died and competitors had to be postponed on land, just in time for lunch.
Four more races were able to be sailed in each division later in the afternoon when a weak southerly breeze filled in. By the end of racing on Saturday, the Bulldogs were sitting fifth in the overall standings.
Sunday began with an on-shore postponement due to lack of wind. Fortunately, a southeasterly breeze eventually showed up that allowed for five more races in B division and four more races in A division prior to lunch. However, the wind died again during the lunch break and ultimately the regatta was called to an end after 12 races in each division.
Senior skipper Claire Dennis and sophomore crew Katherine Gaumond sailed to a fourth-place finish in A division for the Bulldogs. Gaumond reported that "it was disappointing for Claire and me to finish one point out of second, but… it was a solid start for the season." This was Gaumond's third regatta of the season but her first with the women's team and it was Dennis' first regatta period.
In B division, senior skipper Emily Billing and junior crew Amanda Salvesen sailed to a fifth place finish, just one point out of fourth. Billing and Salvesen helped the women's sailing team to a second place finish at the Charleston Women's Regatta the previous weekend, but there was a larger and more competitive fleet at this regatta. Fifth place in the 20-boat fleet at Navy is an improvement from their sixth-place finish in the 18-boat fleet in Charleston.
The Bulldogs are now looking forward to the week ahead which they will spend in St. Petersburg, Fla., training for five days. They have only been able to practice one day outside of competition until now, so they have been anxiously awaiting spring break training.
Report filed by Chris Segerblom '14, Yale Sports Publicity