SAILING | Elis capture Ivy title

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Photo by Zeenat Mansoor.

Last weekend, the No. 1 coed sailing team handily won the Ivy title, with positive results for the coed and women’s teams elsewhere as well.

The coed team dominated the Owen, Mosbacher and Knapp trophies, the de facto Ivy League sailing championship, which it hosted from the McNay Family Sailing Center in Branford. Additionally, the Elis captured the Boston Dinghy Cup at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a third-place finish at the Southern Series One at Salve Regina in Newport, R.I., The No. 2 women’s team finished third at the Duplin Trophy Team Race Regatta at Tufts University.

“We’ve definitely improved, and we can improve even more,” sailing head coach Zachary Leonard ’89 said. “We’ve been [able to spot] bad situations before they arise.”

The Ivy regatta had 12 fleet races for each division. In a fleet race, 20 boats, each representing a different school, compete for first place.

Crew Isabel Elliman ’12, who won the A division in the Ivies with skipper Joe Morris ’12 by a 19-point lead, said sailing in home waters gave the coed team an edge. Elliman added that the team was able to adjust quickly to the range of different sailing conditions that confronted the team.

The Bulldogs faced gusts peaking at 15 knots on Saturday and fluctuating winds on Sunday of less than 10 knots. Skipper Marlena Fauer ’14 said the patchy Sunday breezes made boat positioning tricky since the wind pressure was not always visible.

Fauer, who won the B division by six points with Eugenia Greig ’14, said the team’s consistency in every race was the key for its victory.

“We didn’t go out to win every race right from the beginning, but rather put ourselves in a position in the top five with opportunities to pass boats,” Fauer said. “Joe [Morris] and I [also] did a good job of communicating between the A and B division sets and relaying important information about the breeze and the course.”

Crew Genoa Warner ’12, who competed for the Boston Dinghy Cup in the A division, also attributed the victory to the team’s consistency and readiness to adapt to the shifting waters and sailing conditions. She added that the Charles River, where the regatta was held, often has unpredictable conditions, although it did not prove to be as tricky this weekend.

Warner added that the team sailed in unfamiliar boats usually used in England called “Fireflies,” adding another level of complexity to its racing.

The women’s team competed in a team racing format at the Duplin Trophy Team Race Regatta. In a team racing format, three boats from one school compete collectively against three boats from another, and the result of that race is determined by the sum of their places.

Crew Amanda Salvesen ’14 said she was pleased with the third place result, adding that they conquered the undefeated Boston College.

“I think we consistently improved over the weekend, and in our final race, our work really came together and we began to work as a team,” Salvesen said.

Skipper and captain Emily Billing ’13 said that only one of the six team members who participated in the event had had experience in team racing prior to the regatta, adding that the sailors thought of the race as a learning experience.

While the coed team will practice team racing in preparation for the Southern New England Team Race Intersectional at Connecticut College next weekend, the women’s team will focus more on fleet racing for the Brad Dellenbaugh tournament in Providence, R.I., also next weekend.

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