After a whirlwind weekend that saw Yale’s women’s and coed sailing teams complete four tournaments in two days, the Bulldogs battled high winds and inconsistent weather to place in the top 10 in all five events.
The coed sailing team, led by outstanding performances by newcomers Thomas Barrows ’10 and Marla Menninger ’10, finished second at the Smith Trophy at MIT on Saturday and placed seventh at the Danmark Trophy at Coast Guard, which wrapped on Sunday. Two sailing teams competed in the Southern Series IV at the McNay Family Sailing Center in New Haven on Saturday, placing second and 11th, while the women’s sailing team swept to a second-place finish at the Women’s Regis Bowl at Boston University.
Danmark was by far the most important coed event of the weekend, and is also one of the key events of the season, team members said. The Elis competed against 17 other teams, narrowly besting Ivy rivals Brown and Harvard, which placed eighth and ninth, respectively, but coming in behind MIT and Dartmouth, which finished in fourth and fifth place. No. 1 Boston College took home the trophy on Sunday with a total of 136.
“It looked like all of the best east coast schools were there,” said Hannah Oakland ’07, who did not compete this weekend.
The weather on Saturday was less than ideal, as a strong southerly wind made for shifty conditions on the water. Still, Zach Brown ’08 and Grace Becton ’09 raced to a fifth place finish with 86 points in 10 races in the A division, while the B division team — which consisted of Phil Stemler ’07 and Abigail Coplin ’08 in races 1-6 and Matt Barry ’07 and Adrian Levin ’09 in races 7-11 — finished 10th overall with a total of 107 points.
The Elis fared better at the Smith Trophy on Sunday, finishing second out of 22 teams with a total score of 145, but again losing the regatta to Boston College. The Bulldogs were able to perform well at the regatta partly as a result of the team’s ability to quickly adapt to the conditions on the Charles River, John Kempton ’10 said. The sailors also had to overcome cold temperatures and steady rains on Sunday.
“The Charles River is an interesting place to sail because it is shifty,” Kempton said. “We wanted to get it figured it out early on and get some consistent finishes. We got used to it pretty fast; it took us one set to get used to it, to get a handle on things.”
Menninger and Barrows, Yale’s A division team, raced to a remarkable first place finish in 14 races with a total of 67 points, while Kempton and Michael Hession ’10 placed fifth with 54 points in eight races. Menninger said the regatta was a learning experience for the newest members of the sailing team, who “sailed pretty consistently” throughout the regatta.
“We learned a lot,” she said. “It was fun because it was all the freshmen and we were sailing against all ages … That was fun, to see how everybody interacted with everyone.
At the Southern Series IV on Saturday, the Bulldogs’ two teams finished seventh and 11th overall. For the first team, the A division team of Rebecca Jackson ’10 and Caleb Dorfman ’09 finished eight with a total of 51 points, while the B division team of John Graham ’08 and Turner Smith ’09 finished fifth with 53 points. Rufus Peabody ’08 and Emmet Smith ’09 of Yale’s second A division team placed 11th with 68 points, while the second B division team of Sarah Lihen ’10 and Liz Clark-Polner ’09 finished in ninth place with a score of 67.
At the Regis Bowl at Boston University, the women’s sailing team finished an impressive second place out of 14 teams with 95 points, but lost the regatta to rival Harvard, which scored a total of 84 points.
The women will compete in the Navy Women’s Fall Invite this weekend at Navy, while the coed sailing teams will again travel throughout New England, competing in the NE Men’s Championships at Roger Williams in R.I., the Hap Moore Team Race at Coast Guard and the Mosbacher-Knapp Team Trophy at Princeton.