U.S. Yngling Wins Princess Sofia Trophy

News brief

For the second year in a row, the USA Yngling team of Sally Barkow (Chenequa, Wis.), Debbie Capozzi (Bayport, N.Y.) and Carrie Howe (Grosse Pointe, Mich.) won the 2007 Princess Sofia Trophy in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. In a competitive fleet of 36 entries, Barkow and her team battled fluky and frustrating conditions to ultimately finish in first place ahead of the British team led by Sarah Ayton. In the 470 Women's class, fellow US Sailing Team members Erin Maxwell (Stonington, Conn.) and Isabelle Kinsolving (New York, N.Y.) secured third place in a fleet of 71 entries. This event was the first of several major European regattas that the US Sailing Team and other top Olympic contenders will compete at this spring. The major theme surrounding this year's Princess Sofia Trophy was the challenging conditions and wicked weather. For several days this week, rain showers and little wind led to delayed starts or cancelled races, leaving competitors stranded, cold and unhappy. "The regatta had very trying conditions this year, yet the US Sailing Team had a great showing with two medals," said High Performance Director and Head Coach Gary Bodie (Hampton, Va.). "I am proud of the way we handled such tricky conditions," said Carrie Howe. "It was a long week of unexpected changes, and it was hard to stay on top of everything. We just kept fighting and making up for unlucky moments and capitalizing on lucky moments." On Thursday, during the ninth race, the team adapted quickly when two cruise ships plowed through their course in the middle of a rain shower, and they were trapped in the destructive wake. "We gambled and sailed the opposite jibe, split and gained 15 boats on the last run. It was a regatta saver."Maxwell and Kinsolving's third-place finish exceeded their expectations, after only quitting their full-time jobs two weeks ago to pursue their Olympic sailing campaign. "We did not know what to expect going into the event, since many of the other teams have been doing much more training than us. We were pleased with our consistency in a variety of conditions," said Kinsolving. Queen Sofia, who the regatta is named after, presented the trophies to the top three winners in each of the 11 Olympic classes, as well as the Dragon class, at the Palacio de Congresos del Pueblo Espanol in Palma de Mallorca on Friday.For more, click here.