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The 3rd Annual Secor Volvo Fishers Island Sound Race

Secor Volvo Ocean RaceOn July 7 & 8, 2017, 100 sailors between the ages of 12 to 18 and representing 15 yacht clubs competed in what has become one of the most eagerly anticipated  races in the Northeast. Sponsored by Secor Volvo in New London, CT and sailed in 420s, the Secor Volvo Fishers Island Sound Race is a challenging, two-day, club-to-club race along the shorelines of three states.

Eli Gleason and Kristen Healy of Niantic Bay YC are this year’s winners.  
© Julia Parker Cronin/Outrageous Photography

Modeled after the ‘round-the-world Volvo Ocean Race by founder and chairman Brandon Flack, this one-of-a-kind event includes “stopovers” at yacht clubs along the route.

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America’s Cup Endeavour O’Pen BIC: The Experience of a Lifetime!

By Nevin Sayre

AC Endeavor With the backdrop of the 35th America’s Cup, 32 O’Pen BIC sailors, ages ten to fifteen, participated in the America’s Cup Endeavour O’Pen on Bermuda’s Great Sound June 15 -18, 2017. The kids and parents represented ten different nations from around the world, and all hailed the event as the “experience of a lifetime.”

The enthusiastic crowd at the America’s Cup Village loved the O’Pen BIC Freestyle Exhibition.   ©photoMagiFoster
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Sailing Your Own Race: Lessons from Junior Sailing

By Robert N. Rossier

Sail your own raceAll of us who are parents want to do a good job at it, but parenting doesn’t come with an instruction manual. Sometimes we make bad choices; other times we do better. Along the way we’re bound to worry which is which, and we ask ourselves, “Am I being a good parent?”

Ethan Rossier prepares for competition at the 2010 WestMex regatta in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico.   © Robert N. Rossier

Getting my son into junior sailing seemed like a good idea – an opportunity for him to learn responsibility, gain independence, make a network of friends and have real fun. We had recently moved to Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico, and it would be a great way for him to integrate into the local community. Okay, so maybe I was projecting my own interests, but really, what was the down side?

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Take Care of Your Gear!

By Clemmie Everett

Take care of your gear junior sailingAn important part of success on the racecourse is to be properly prepared with the right gear. Once you have the right gear, of course, you need to know how to properly care for equipment and to be disciplined in doing such.

Keeping your boat and gear in top condition will pay dividends on the racecourse.  ©Spectrum Photo/Fran Grenon

Sun and salt are the worst things for most sailing equipment, which, frustratingly, are also elements constantly present on most racecourses. At the end of each sailing day, try to hose off your boat with fresh water, paying close attention to lines and metal fittings. If you’re sailing a Laser, Sunfish or other boat with a small cockpit, you can partially fill that cockpit with fresh water to give each line a good dousing. Store lines in a bag or inside when not using them, since UV rays will degrade lines over time. When storing for a long time, be sure the lines are dry to prevent mold and mildew.

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Sail Black Rock Takes the Silver!

Sail Black RockNo, not that kind of silver. The New England Intercollegiate Sailing Association’s Freshman Championship – The Priddy Trophy – hosted by Sail Black Rock (SBR) at Captain’s Cove Seaport in Bridgeport, CT on April 22, 2017 has earned silver certification as a Clean Regatta from Sailors for the Sea.

Jenna Hannafin (right) University of New Hampshire Class of 2020, raffle winner of ORACLE TEAM USA cap autographed by skipper Jimmy Spithill with her crew Kailee Bodoh, UNH ’20  ©Dave White
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NESS Celebrates 15 Years of Serving the Community

By Caroline Knowles 

NESSThe New England Science & Sailing Foundation (NESS) is celebrating 15 years of serving the community this summer. NESS is an ocean adventure nonprofit that provides STEM-based education programs, on the water and off, for students from all walks of life.

New London students enjoy an afterschool sail in Stonington Harbor. © Caroline Knowles

NESS uses marine science, adventure sports, powerboating and sailing as platforms for inquiry-based learning, personal discovery, teaching respect and responsibility for the sea, and creating connections with the community. NESS operates year-round with families, schools, and organizations to provide high quality programs that blend an innovative curriculum with exciting aquatic activities.

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The Little Details That Add Up to Big Differences in Speed

By Clemmie Everett

Coaches CornerWhen coaching, I sometimes make suggestions that my sailors listen to but don’t seem to internalize. Often these are seemingly small adjustments on their rigging or boathandling, and I’m pretty sure that the thought running though their heads is something along the lines of, “Sure, Coach, but is that really going to make a difference?”

Paying attention to such details as making your sails are fully hoisted, keeping skipper and crew weight together, minimizing rudder movement – and bailing diligently! – will make your boat go faster.   © Cate Brown Photography

True, a single small adjustments may not make the difference between first place and tenth, but a lot of these adjustments together, especially over the course of a long series (like a high school regatta or a frostbite season), will add up to a noticeable difference.

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The Junior Sailing Association of Long Island Sound

Fostering excellence for 93 years

JSALISFounded in 1924 to support its member junior sailing programs through leadership, training, communication and event scheduling, the Junior Sailing Association of Long Island Sound (JSA) has produced legions of sailors who have excelled at the highest levels of the sport.

Jake Sal (helm) and Claire Glenn of Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club round the leeward mark during a recent JSA Laser/C420 Championship. © jsablog.com

We spoke with JSA Co-Chairs Karen Quirke, a member of American Yacht Club and New York Yacht Club, and Peter “Pedro” Lorson of Manhasset Bay Yacht Club and Port Washington Yacht Club, who discussed their own experiences as junior sailors and the past, present and future of this venerable non-profit organization.

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Preparation and Success in High School Sailing

By Clemmie Everett

Preparation and Success in High School SailingThere are many factors that affect your performance in a race: boatspeed, strategy, tactics, and of course, a little bit of luck. But don’t overlook the importance of preparation: making sure you have everything you need to help you perform at your best and sail with maximum speed. In high school sailing, the work done to prepare before you even get to the starting line is often the difference between the top of the fleet and the middle (or worse).

Well prepared, well rested racers always perform better than those that left an important piece of gear at home or stayed up late the night before a regatta.  © Clemmie Everett
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Sailing Life Starts at Shennecosset Yacht Club

Shennecosset Yacht ClubIf you are looking for a great place to learn how to sail, check out the program at Shennecosett Yacht Club (SYC) in Groton, CT. Located next to UConn’s Avery Point Campus in beautiful Pine Island Bay, students can enjoy an easier early sailing experience with calm waters in the protective cove.

SYC Sailing School classes are held on the sheltered waters of Pine Island Bay.  © Barbara Jean Walsh
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