Another four races today with 8-12 knots and small waves. Thomas Rice sits in 2nd overall, leading 3rd by 1 point, after 8 races. 3 races scheduled for the last day tomorrow.
4 races on Day one in St. Thomas in 8-12 knots. RC planning on another 4 today.
We had a great first day in St. Thomas on Wednesday with 10-12 knots of typical sea breeze and 2-3 ft. waves. We focused on technique for boat speed and handling in the waves. Here is a video of some downwind work and I will post some more later of upwind sailing.
Thursday was our second day and we again had picture perfect conditions with a little more wind and bigger waves. The kids all improved from day 1 in the conditions and are psyched for the regatta to start tomorrow. Here is some upwind video from the training.
Congrats to Ian Jezak, Harrison Bailey, Michelle Lahrkamp, Madeleine Rice, and Nick Chisari will join SailStrong Coach Scott Norman on the USODA team heading to the British National Championship this August in Weymouth, the sailing venue for the 2012 London Olympics.
With three teams traveling to two events this weekend the kids were busy. SailStrong Red finished 5th of 20 teams at the Trofeo Marco Rizzotti in Venice, Italy. It was the first international team race for SailStrong. There was definitely a lot learned about a different style of racing than we usually see here in the US. SailStrong Blue and White were at Southern YC for their inaugural Opti Team race. Being a first time event it was a small turnout with 6 teams but SYC put on a great regatta and given the low number of teams the teams were able to get in a lot of races relative to a two day event with 15-20 teams. Racing was also close with all teams winning races and victory for SYC Black coming down to the last race. Our White Team finished 2nd and Blue Team 3rd.
Both events produced lots of good preparation for Nationals in July.
Congrats to the 4 SailStrong Opti team members that have qualified to represent the USA at the IODA North American Championships in Nayarit, Mexico in July. Sam Bruce, Maddie Hawkins, Michael Pinto will all make their first trip to a continental championship and Thomas Rice will be heading to his second North Americans.
More info at the event webiste: http://www.optinam2014.org/
SailStrong teams will be traveling to two team race events this weekend.
First, SailStrong Red ( JC Hermus, Thomas Rice, Gray Benson, Maddie Hawkins, and Clayton Johnson ) are headed to Venice, Italy to compete in the Trofeo Marco Rizzotti. They qualified for this international team race by winning the USODA Team Race Midwinters back in February. This is one of the most competitive Opti Team races in the world and a great honor to represent USA there.
At the same time SailStrong Blue ( Michelle Lahrkamp, Ian Jezak, Nick Chisari, Jordan Bruce) and White (Madeleine Rice, Walter Henry, Sam Bruce, Torrey Chisari, Vanessa Lahrkamp) are traveling to Southern Yacht Club in New Orleans for their inaugural Junior Team Race. It looks like it is going to be a great event with a similar format to the Lauderdale YC Opti Team Race with provided boats and sails. It’s always nice to be able to arrive with just your sailing gear and lifejacket to sail. Thanks to SYC for putting this together and hopefully it builds into a great team race in coming years.
Good luck to all our sailors this weekend. Enjoy!
Opti Sailing in big waves in Palamos, Spain
Four SailStrong sailors headed to Spain last week for the Palamos International Optimist Trophy which each year brings together many of the top kids from around Europe. This year we had fantastic conditions with wind ranging from light to heavy and some of the biggest waves the kids will see sailing an Opti.
I will post some video later in the week of the conditions.
Thomas Rice lead the group in 35th of the 400 sailors, with JC Hermus 40th, Madeleine Rice 58th, and Michelle Lahrkamp 63rd.
Two of our sailors left straight from New England Champs in Maine to make it to Kingston, Ontario for racing the following day at the CORK Optimist Regatta. Gray Benson sailed a great regatta to finish 3rd, just 3 points out of 2nd Place. Clayton Johnson sailed well too, finishing 13th of the 99 boats sailing. Way to go boys!