Elis finish second in Branford

It was home sweet home this weekend for the road-weary No. 7 coed sailing team. The Elis hosted the Ferrarone Team Racing Intersectional at the Yale Corinthian Yacht Club in Branford, and the tough conditions made the home water advantage a factor as the Elis cruised into second place among the 12 teams competing.

Coed captain Matt Barry ’07 said the team was thrilled with its 9-3 finish at the event.

“It was a good weekend, and we were very happy with our performance,” he said. “We were second to Tufts, but I thought we sailed extremely well. The result obviously leaves room for improvement, but we were happy.”

Yale fielded a team of nine sailors at the event, with Barry sharing skippering duties with Phil Stemler ’07 and All-Americans Zach Brown ’08 and Molly Carapiet ’06. Hannah Oakland ’07, Abby Coplin ’08, Adrianne Levin ’09, Sarah Himmelfarb ’06 and Giovanni Zevi della Porta ’07 shared crewing duties for the Bulldogs.

The team race format is substantially different from fleet racing, which is far more common in collegiate competition. In fleet racing, each school sends both an A and a B boat, whose scores are combined for the final result. One point is awarded for first, two for second, three for third and so on, with the lowest combined score winning.

In team racing, schools send three boats each, which compete in single or double round-robin races. The team with the best record wins. Because only three boats could compete, Yale’s skippers and crew had to share duties over the course of the weekend.

Weather was also an important factor in the weekend’s result. Biting cold, rain and even snow made sailing Saturday extremely unpleasant, and while the weather improved on Sunday, the wind did not drop off until the end of the day. But Barry said the Elis are used to the conditions.

“The conditions on Saturday were absolutely miserable, so we actually only sailed until four o’clock,” Barry said. “But the conditions were probably average Yale conditions for this time of year, so we were prepared.”

In Boston, the No. 3 women’s team and the fearsome freshman skipper duo of Kate Hagemann ’09 and Jane Macky ’09 had a second successful weekend with their crews Grace Becton ’09 and Hilary Shapiro ’08. The rookies finished fifth overall in the 15-team field at the President’s Trophy at Boston University, with Hagemann and Becton finishing sixth in A division and Mackey and Shapiro cruising into fourth in B division.

Macky said the regatta gave the four Bulldogs important experience at sailing on the sometimes-tricky Charles River.

“It’s quite a narrow area, so the wind is quite shifty, which can make it a little bit more unpredictable and challenging,” Macky said. “But it’s a lot of fun because it’s a bit different. You can sort of work your way through the fleet. We’re sailing at [a regatta] next weekend that is in the same place, so it will be good to build on what we learned from last weekend.”

Macky and Hagemann were one of only three freshman-freshman skipper pairs at the President’s Trophy, making them one of the least experienced teams there. They sailed their first major intersectional together on April 1-2 at the Duplin Women’s Trophy at Tufts University.

“It’s definitely a great opportunity to sail at these regattas,” Hagemann said. “It’s been a successful spring and it’s going really good, and I am happy it’s going the way it is. We all sail really well together and get along really well, so that makes everything go smoother.”

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