Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Kennedy Cup 2011

The weekend of November 4-6 the team traveled to Annapolis, Maryland to compete in the Kennedy Cup at the U.S. Naval Academy. This is technically the collegiate big boat national championship event, with the winner earning a spot in the Student Yachting World Cup in France the following fall.

Friday was windy, with breeze in the mid 20s through the morning, settling to high teens by the afternoon and steady chop. We started off with a practice spinnaker run and surfed down the bay at 12 knots, before getting into the racing. For the first 3 races of the day everyone sailed without a spinnaker due to the breeze as well as a #3 jib and reefed main. We were slow to start, getting used to the boats, but by race 3 we got a third and finally finished the day under spinnakers with a fourth.

Conditions on Saturday were still settling all day from the high to low teens and we sailed 5 races, starting and ending the day with second place finishes. Race 4 of the day however saw us involved in a protest with Navy, after they fouled us while trying to clear themselves of an early start. After a late evening in the protest room, we had some authentic Maryland crab for dinner and got some rest for Sunday.

When we arrived, there was no wind, but we went out anyway to try and get 1 more race in for the series. The race committee started a race, and we led around 2 legs before they abandoned and sent us in. We finished the regatta in fifth place overall; definitely an impressive result for our first time on the Navy 44s against almost all maritime academy teams.

The team was Matt Graham, David Oliver, Liz Smith, Tanner DePriest, Ryan Seago, Kirsten Corneliussen, Amanda Baker, Mike Vittorio, Chris Oliver, and Sammy Barbour, with a special thanks to Riley Moran and his family who hosted all of us for a 3 day weekend.