Despite the lack of wind this weekend, the sailing team had a strong start to its season over the last two weeks after competing in numerous events across New England.
“The women’s regatta was at MIT and that was a really tough event. A lot of people that were at nationals last spring were there,” Women’s captain Ellis Price ’18 said. “I think it was a good event because we had two new female skippers that are first years, they both did really well for their first college event, so I think we’re pretty pleased with that, and hoping for a good season.”
This week, the sailing team competed in the Hatch Brown Trophy at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Central Series 2 at Boston College and the Ross Trophy at University of Vermont.
Due to the lack of wind, the sailors at UVM were only able to complete two races on Saturday. At the end of the two races the Polar Bears were in the lead, but were unable to officially win the event, because there must be three races for an official winner to be declared.
At MIT, the team was unable to compete Saturday, but completed three races on Sunday. The team placed 15th of 20 teams. The team racing in the Central Series at Boston College raced eight races over the span of Saturday and Sunday. It finished 8th of 17 teams.
“Those are sometimes the toughest regattas [races without wind], because you’re waiting all weekend and still have to be mentally in it, and then the races that you do do really count,” Price said.
On Wednesday, the team cancelled a midweek invitational, which was supposed to be one of the two home events in the sailing season. Home events give the team a slight advantage over their opponents because they will be familiar with the boats, venue and current. While traveling, the team’s focus is split between preparing for the race and becoming acquainted with the weather conditions and the venue.
The team is focused on building off of its previous weekends and applying what it learns at practice to competitions. The team’s members are more focused on the process than the results, except when they are trying to qualify for ACCs or Nationals.
The major goal for the sailing team is qualifying for nationals, but that competition is during the spring season. The team focuses on learning and growing in the fall.
“I think we have a broad range of experience on the team, and I think that is a great opportunity to spread knowledge, and to have everyone get more competitive,” captain Nora Cullen ’18 said.
Sharing knowledge about sailing is vital for the team due to its wide array of sailing backgrounds. Some sailors are recruited, while some have no prior experience. Regardless of prior experience, the sailing team strives to create an inclusive environment for all members according to Cullen.
“My classmates who are walk ons their freshman year have come leaps and bounds and are crucial members of the team. Walk ons do contribute in a big way,” men’s captain Harrison Hawk ’18 said.
The team is hoping to build on the last two weekends as they travel to five different events this weekend including the Loder Trophy at University of New Hampshire, Hood Trophy at Tufts, New England Singles at Roger Williams University (RWU), Women’s Invitational at RWU and New England Women’s Single at RWU.