By Alexa Shea & Elizabeth van der Voort, Young American Sailing Academy
Editor’s note: Many sailors would consider the failure of a boat’s electrical system during an overnight race sufficient cause for throwing in the towel and setting a course for the nearest tavern. For the eight teenage sailors aboard the J/105 Young American in this year’s running of Stamford Yacht Club’s Vineyard Race, quitting was never an option.
While racing on a thirty-five foot boat with enough provisioning and water, one wouldn’t expect much to go wrong in one night going to Buzzards Tower and back. But if one suddenly had no navigational lights or data on the depth, wind direction, wind speed, boat speed, bearing and more, one would probably retire.
The crew of Young American overcame electrical issues to finish fourth in their 10-boat class in the Vineyard Race. Photo courtesy of Rick Bannerot © 2018
However, that’s not what happened in our Vineyard Race. When we lost all of our power on Young American, everyone sprung to action to try and help. Because our engine sucks in air on starboard, we just assumed that we had to flood the engine. But before that happened, our coach Joe Cooper gave us spare navigation lights that he brought just in case. After flooding the engine and trying to start it in order to charge our batteries, we decided to give it a break and try again when the boat was upright.
Luckily, we had two charged phones with two different navigational apps that we used, but two phones on 20 percent wouldn’t last two days so we had to make sure we barely used them. Also, we had two compasses built into the boat and we shined a flashlight on them. After 50 hours of racing, we were near Stratford Point when the wind died and we were discussing dropping out. That idea came to an end real fast when we all realized we had come this far with no electronics and we could go another five hours because we deserved to finish.Read more
By Rick Bannerot
Ex Scientia Tridens, “Through Knowledge, Sea Power” is the motto of the United States Naval Academy, and in mid-June 2018, five Navy 44s (44-foot navy blue sloops) took station near the lighthouse just off the Stamford, CT breakwater before dousing sails and entering Stamford Harbor as part of their ten-day sail training exercise “at sea” from Annapolis, MD.
Brave is one of five Navy 44s that visited Long Island Sound on a recent U.S. Naval Academy Offshore Sail Training Squadron cruise. Photo courtesy of Rick Bannerot, copyright 2018
Wait! What? Yes it is true, in today’s high tech world of naval operations with billion dollar ships, the U.S. Naval Academy still has sailing in its heart and teaches many Midshipmen the finer points of handling sailboats and the decision-making and leadership skills that entails. The program is called the Offshore Sail Training Squadron (“OSTS”) and is part of a series of summer training electives designed to give Midshipmen experience in leadership, decision-making, teamwork and self-discovery; all vital elements for future commissioned officers in the Navy or Marine Corps.Read more
By Barby MacGowan, Media Pro International
With 21 students aboard from Rogers High School, Portsmouth High School and the MET School, Rhode Island’s Official Sailing Education Vessel SSV Oliver Hazard Perry returned to Newport, RI on June 11, 2018 after ten days at sea. The 200-foot, three-masted Class A Tall Ship and its student trainees, plus two teacher chaperones and 18 professional crew, started the voyage in Philadelphia, PA on June 2, 2018 and traveled approximately 566 nautical miles to Newport, according to the ship’s Captain Kevin Wells.
Sail trainees (l - r) Bobby Zeller (Rogers HS), Harrison Russell (Portsmouth HS), Collin Clair (Portsmouth), Carsen Prater (Portsmouth), Landon Dosouto (MET School), and Rebecca Downs-Honey (Portsmouth) enjoy a new friendship bond. Photo courtesy OHPRIRead more
Representing Riverside Yacht Club, the team of Jack Parkin (Greenwich, CT), Ashton Borcherding (Greenwich), Bram Brakman (Darien, CT) and Wiley Rogers (Kemah, TX) won the 2018 U.S. Youth Match Racing Championship for the Rose Cup. The event was co-hosted by Oakcliff Sailing and Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club in Oyster Bay, NY June 27 to July 1, 2018 and sailed in Sonars. Parkin’s team finished nine races with eight points, and only one loss in the Round Robin.
Ten teams of four, each with at least one female crew, competed in the 2018 U.S. Youth Match Racing Championship for the Rose Cup.© Francis George/Oakcliff SailingRead more
By Peter Cronin
Editor’s note: In 2016, the Newport Bermuda Race Organizing Committee initiated a new division for young sailors. To qualify for the Stephens Brothers Youth Division, 50% of a yacht’s crew must be between the ages of 14 and 23 (inclusive). An enticing prize donated by the Cruising Club of America’s New York Station and honoring legendary sailors Olin and Rod Stephens, the Stephens Brothers Youth Division Trophy is awarded to the yacht with the best performance in that division. Hailing from Southeastern Connecticut, the MudRatz Offshore Team claimed the Stephens Brothers Youth Division Trophy (and the Alfred E. Loomis Trophy as the winners of the 14-boat Class 5 of the St. David’s Lighthouse Division) in the 51st Newport Bermuda Race. To learn more, log onto MudRatz.org.
The idea of the MudRatz participating in the Newport Bermuda Race was conceived about a year ago. MudRatz founder Brandon Flack had seen us grow in the Melges 24s and was ready for us to take on the challenge of offshore racing. The only thing stopping us from doing these events was the availability of a boat. Brandon put the word out that we were actively looking for a boat that we could use for the Newport Bermuda Race, but as the cold, dark days of December 2017 rolled through there were no real prospects in sight.
Celebrating aboard Dreamcatcher in Hamilton Harbor are (front row, left to right) Taylor Walker, Peter Cronin, Steve Kylander, Megan Gimple, John Winder, OJ O’Connell (kneeling) and (back row, l - r) Lindsay Gimple, Annie Longo, Sarah Wilkinson, Morgan Buffum and Fritz Finkenauer. © Julia Cronin/OutrageousPhotography.netRead more
By Laura Beigel
The fourth annual Dinghy Race by Volvo Construction Equipment, formerly known as the Secor Volvo Race, will be sailed July 12 and 13, 2018. This one-of-a-kind event is modeled after the Volvo Ocean Race, and participants between the ages of 12 and 18 race 420s on a 20-mile course in Fishers Island Sound in an experience normally reserved for older sailors.
As in “the other Volvo,” participants in The Dinghy Race by Volvo Construction Equipment sail distance legs and make stopovers. © Clay Burkhalther/burkhalterphotos.comRead more
Hinckley Yacht Services in Portsmouth, RI will be the home base for Young American Sailing Academy (YASA) youth team, who are sailing the R/P 63 mini-maxi Gambler in the 51st Newport Bermuda Race.
Double Threat: The Young American Sailing Academy (pictured here aboard Young American in last year’s Ida Lewis Distance Race) has two boats entered in the 51st Newport Bermuda Race. © Stephen Cloutier/photogroup.us
Hinckley is providing logistical support during the lead-up to the race, which starts Friday, June 15, 2018 and will continue through the Transatlantic Race 2019 that begins in Newport, RI next June. In addition to the Gambler team, Hinckley will provide support to YASA’s J/105 Young American out of their Hinckley Service Yard in Stamford, CT.Read more
Next generation of offshore sailors preparing for Newport Bermuda
A new non-profit organization with a mission to provide opportunities for high school and college sailors in competitive offshore sailing, the Young American Sailing Academy, Inc. (YASA) has announced two entries for the 51st Newport Bermuda Race, which starts Friday, June 15, 2018. Twenty-two young sailors on two boats will improve their offshore skills in the iconic, 635-mile offshore race.
The Young American Junior Big Boat Sailing Team made yacht racing history in the 2016 Newport Bermuda Race. © John RousmaniereRead more
As part of the Storm Trysail Club’s efforts to engage younger sailors in the offshore component of yacht racing, the Tri-State Youth Offshore Challenge has been created which includes a series of regattas in eastern Connecticut, Rhode Island and Shelter Island, New York.
Sailing in the Youth Challenge division with members of the Grimes and Moffet families comprising her crew, Paul Grimes’ J/35 Breakaway took third in PHRF Spinnaker 2 in the 2016 Ida Lewis Distance Race. © Cate Brown/ catebrownphoto.comRead more
New Safe Powerboating Classes at New England Science & Sailing
By Caroline Knowles
Who taught you to drive a car? I have both fond and frightening memories of learning to drive my parents’ car: merging onto I-95 for the first time, taking an extra lap around the two-lane rotary as I tried to get out of the inside lane to exit, and white-knuckling the wheel as I parallel parked uphill during the practical portion of my driver’s license test. Now think about getting your recreational boating certificate (the boating version of a driver’s license).
As a US Safe Powerboating certified Powerboat Training Center, NESS offers group classes for all abilities, ages 12 and older, as well as private lessons. © Caroline Knowles/nessf.org
If you are not familiar with the process, you take an 8-hour classroom-based course, pass a written exam, then get your safe boating certificate.Read more