Aiming to create a welcoming atmosphere for first years and further strengthen their team’s camaraderie, Bowdoin sailors are staying positive through virtual meetings and workouts despite challenges the broader athletic community faces from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
“This is a time to come together”: sailing conference changes rules to formalize mandatory discussions on race
Channeling the momentum for racial justice activism sparked by the killing of George Floyd this May in Minneapolis, Preston Anderson ’22, a member of the Bowdoin sailing team, led the charge to change his conference’s bylaws and to implement mandatory race relations training in the New England Intercollegiate Sailing Association (NEISA).
Coming off the best season in program history last spring, the sailing team rode its momentum into the opening weekend of its fall season last week, sailing in five regattas. One team placed third in the Harmon Trophy at Maine Maritime Academy, earning qualifying spots for the Match Race Championships and the Penobscot Bay Open.
This past weekend, the Bowdoin Sailing team competed in the Team Races of New England Championship at Connecticut College, finishing fourth overall. For the first time in program history, the coed team qualified for the Team Race Nationals which will be held in Newport, Rhode Island on May 25-27.
This Saturday, approximately seven of Bowdoin’s top sailors will head to Maryland to compete in one of the most significant and competitive regattas of the fall season: the Showcase Finals at St. Mary’s College. The Polar Bears qualified for this event after a strong performance at the Coed Showcase Regatta at MIT two weekends ago.
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.
Going for Gold. Over the summer, Bowdoin women’s basketball player Ally Silfen ’17 and field hockey player Sarah Jane Weill ’18 traveled to Jerusalem for the 20th Maccabiah Games—an international Jewish and Israeli multi-sport event held in Israel every four years.
Smooth sailing. The sailing team competed in two regattas last weekend. Finishing seventh out of 18 teams, the windless Admiral’s Cup significantly limited racing. At the Women’s New England Championship, the Polar Bears battled it out with Harvard, ultimately winning a tiebreaker against the Crimson to secure the final qualifying spot for Women’s Nationals.
For the sailing team, a high-stakes weekend of races approaches. Tomorrow, the team will compete in the New England Team Race Championships at Tufts University and its performance at this regatta will determine whether it heads to the Team Racing National Championships later this spring in Charleston, SC.