After placing second at home last week, the coed sailing team performed even better this weekend, cruising to victory by a massive 98 point spread at the Hatch Brown Trophy. The Bulldogs mixed up their lineup before their trip to the event at MIT with several changes to their skipper and crew pairings, but still managed 23 podium finishes between all three divisions and 17 races.
“This weekend, all three of our divisions played around with new pairings, and the results show how well we can adapt to these new roles,” Charlotte Belling ’16 said. “I think as both a crew and a skipper it’s important to get in a boat with someone new and challenge yourself to learn a new type of sailing.
Both Belling and team captain Graham Landy ’15 noted that the team responded to difficult conditions in the Charles River, which exhibited shifty and unpredictable winds, by shackling the elements and avoiding major mistakes.
The all-American pairing of skipper Landy and crew Belling dominated the A division. The sailors, who both attended high school at the Hotchkiss School in Connecticut but had never sailed together before the weekend, finished outside the top five of the 18-team field in just five of 17 races and outpaced second-place Tufts by 36 points.
“Charlotte’s a fantastic crew and she always has a positive outlook on the race,” Landy said. “She did a great job of keeping me level headed in very trying conditions. We’ve been friends a long time, so I think that we understand how the other person thinks both on and off the water.”
Landy also lauded Belling for her composure and good attitude, as she bounced back after snapping her hiking line midway through the race and falling into the notoriously unclean Charles River.
Another relatively new pairing, the sophomore duo of skipper Mitchell Kiss ’17 and crew Clara Robertson ’17, placed second by a slim eight-point margin in the B Division. Robertson and Kiss — who made a name for himself last year as a star single-handed sailor — have found some early season consistency with two straight second placed finishes.
The Elis stacked the C division with two All-American skippers and an All-American crew, leading to top three finishes in seven of 17 races and a 30-point margin of victory. Ian Barrows ’17 and Morgan Kiss ’15 — Mitchell’s older sister — rotated in the C division alongside crew Katherine Gaumond ’15. Barrows returned to the Yale lineup for the first time this season after missing the previous regatta with an injury.
“This weekend proved that our team is very flexible and can race well regardless of the condition or type of boat,” Belling said. “The Charles River can be extremely shifty and frustrating, but everyone did a great job of staying level headed and moving forward after a bad race.”