Regional Championships Close Out Fall Season

© Annie Johnson

The past weekend was one of the busiest of the season for West Coast schools. The PCIYRA hosted North-South, the fall Pacific Coast Championships, while the NWICSA hosted North-North which because of a lack of wind two weeks ago became the Northwest's fall championship.After a disappointing Outlaw VI two weeks ago--no wind one day, too much the next--the sailors in the Northwest were ready to sail this weekend at the North-North regatta at Sail Sand Point in Seattle. Eleven teams from five schools, including an impressive 4.5 boats from Western Washington, sailed 10 races in the sometimes adverse conditions. Saturday was light and shifty but the Race Committee managed to run 5 A-division races and 4 B-division races before the rain came and the wind died. The night was also filled with intense district bonding, including a district dinner at Azteca with every team at the regatta represented and many more boat races of the on-land variety.Sunday brought the winds the sailors had been expecting all weekend with a steady breeze of at least 10 to 12 knots with a few bigger puffs. But with the breeze came the rain to which sailors in the Northwest have become accustomed. The fleet was tight throughout the regatta with the overall lead changing many times. The University of Oregon was the big surprise of the regatta, showing up with two brand new boats and matching jackets and finishing second overall to Washington in the regatta thanks largely to the strong A-division sailing of freshman Rob Dubuc. Western, UW-2 and Portland State rounded out the top five, followed by University of British Columbia, UW/WWU and the Western Women.A thousand miles down the coast in Santa Barbara more racing was occurring at the North-South Intersectional. Racing between the top teams was also tight there, with only five points separating the top three teams and only one point separating second and third. Hawaii walked away the winner with an 4-point victory over USC. The Rainbows placed third in each of the four divisions and their consistency was rewarded with an overall win. Fifteen teams traveled to Santa Barbara, almost all were from the West Coast with the exception of Georgetown and Michigan. Georgetown and USC won the A and B FJ division, respectively, while Stanford freshman Emory Wager and UCSB junior Tedd White won the C and D Laser divisions, respectively. Racing in C division was extremely close with eight points separating the top six finishers and only four points separating the top four.Racing in the Junior Varsity fleet was also tight, resulting in a 1-point win for the USC team of Paul Taylor, Eva Seligman, Glennan Stratton, and Vanessa Deccollilans. Only four points separated the top five teams, all from Stanford and USC, in A-division. The B-division was not as tight with UC Irvine's Joe Roberts and Juilana Long winning by six points; teams from Stanford and USC rounded out the top five in the fleet.The North-South and North-North regattas mark the end of the fall season for a majority of the West Coast teams, though January's Rose Bowl regatta at the Alamitos Bay YC is actually the final regatta of the fall season.New England Dominates Final Fall CompetitionsBy Amory LoringNew England teams came out on top this past weekend in the final doublehanded competitions of the fall sailing season, the Coed and Women's Atlantic Coast Championships, held at SUNY Maritime and Old Dominion University in the remaining breeze from a major front that pounded the East Coast late last week.Dartmouth dominated at the Coed ACCs, with senior Scott Hogan and crews Jimmy Attridge and Andrew Loe taking third in A division, while freshman phenom Erik Storck, with Attridge crewing, won B division. Because the wind died and no races were able to be sailed on Sunday, only six races were held in each division. "One mistake was costly," said Attridge. "We just focused on the next shift and worked to stay in the most breeze."Dartmouth, Harvard, Brown and Tufts claiming the top four spots. The US Merchant Marine Academy (King's Point) was the top MAISA school in fifth, followed by two more New England schools, Boston College and MIT.Additionally, for the first time in years, the event was almost completely male-dominated. Despite being the Coed Championship, only two women skippered in the event, and a total of four other women crewed in selected races. This was due, in large part, to the steady breeze of between 15 and 20 knots on Saturday.At the Women's ACC at ODU, the breeze was a bit more accommodating. After blowing hard all week, Saturday saw wind between 12 and 15 knots, dwindling down to five knots by the end of the afternoon. A total of eight A and six B races were sailed in the two-on, two-off procedure. On Sunday morning, the breeze was light, but just enough to pull off a final two B division races. The ladies waited for the breeze to fill back in, and sailed two more A races, but couldn't complete the corresponding B races required for the set to count.In the end, Brown and Dartmouth tied for first place, with Brown winning the tie-break. "As the scores reflect, it was tight racing throughout," said Liz Hyon, a crew on the Dartmouth team. "I think the regatta was a good end to the fall, and left many of us with a lot of motivation for the spring season."Tufts, Yale and Charleston rounded out the top five teams at the women's event. AJ Crane and Kristen Tysell of Tufts, winners of A division at Nationals last year, won A division again at the ACC.The only surprise of the weekend was ODU, who sailed to eighth at its home site. Anna Tunnicliffe, normally a force on the course, sailed to fifth in A division, which was not enough to propel her team into the top five overall.Now that the fall season is over, most sailors have a significant amount of time off before competitive double handed sailing takes off again in February. Only the 32 men and women who qualified for Singlehanded Nationals at Eckerd College will be practicing this week; for the rest, it's time to hit the books or take a little vacation.