Finicky winds rock co-ed sailing at Harry Anderson

The nationally-ranked No. 4 coed sailing team may have sported two All-American skippers this weekend, but the Bulldogs were still held to a fourth place finish at home in the Harry Anderson Trophy.

With All-American Stu McNay ’05 at the helm in A division and All-American Molly Carapiet ’06 skippering in B sailing at home in their brand-new 420s, the Bulldogs seemed to have an excellent chance to win the regatta. But rapidly changing conditions and a few big mistakes left the Elis frustrated at the end of the weekend, Carapiet said.

“We had a lot of different conditions, and we had some good races in every condition, which was very promising,” Carapiet said. “But we still made a lot of big mistakes that kept us from winning and we’re hoping we can do a little better in the future.”

Yale finished 20 points out of first place but only two points behind third place Connecticut College. No. 10 Boston College and No. 5 St. Mary’s finished first and second, respectively. There were 24 teams in the regatta.

Meredith Killion ’05, the captain of the Yale coed team, said victory had definitely been in the Bulldogs’ grasp.

“Had both [the A and B Yale] teams not made a couple of their stupid mistakes we could have easily won the regatta,” Killion said.

Although she often skippers in coed regattas, Carapiet is also a key member of the women’s sailing team. The Yale women have been ranked first in the country since they won the National Championship in May. The regatta was Carapiet’s first major intercollegiate event since nationals and McNay’s first since returning to Yale after taking a year off to pursue an Olympic campaign. Carapiet said she was glad to have McNay back and to be sailing at home.

“It was really great to have [McNay] back because he really adds a lot to the team,” she said. “It’s always nice to sail at Yale. It was really great that a lot of the team members came out to help this weekend which really made it a great regatta.”

Carapiet is still sailing with her longtime crew and All-American Jenn Hoyle ’05, but Kate Littlefield ’04, the All-American crew with whom McNay sailed before his Olympic campaign, has since graduated. Killion now sails with McNay.

Killion said she was excited to be sailing with McNay.

“I’ve crewed for someone new pretty much every semester, and sailing with Stu [McNay] is a lot of fun,” Killion said. “There were a couple times when it was evident we’re not yet absolutely comfortable sailing together, but we’ve only sailed together for about a week.”

Sophomore skippers Kendra Emhiser ’07 and Emily Hill ’07 each got a chance to sail at the Harry Anderson, filling in at crew for Killion and Hoyle, respectively, in the 11th and final race of the weekend. High winds often lead coaches to bring in heavier crews, often sailors who are normally skippers, such as Emhiser and Hill, to keep boats level.

“The wind picked up and the waves got high so [Emhiser] and I had to sail,” Hill said. “But [Carapiet] is really good in wind so it was a great opportunity and a nice change. It was hard sailing in the waves but it worked out okay.”

After winning their first national title last season, the Bulldogs have a long season ahead of them, but after picking up arguably one of the nation’s top recruits in Zach Brown ’08, Killion said the team is aiming high.

“One of our biggest goals for this season is to do well in all six of the national championships,” Killion said, referring to the sloop, team racing, and men’s and women’s single and doublehanded dinghy championships. “This is the first year in quite some time we could do well at the national level in all six of those. It’s very exciting.”

Comments