SAILING: Two first-place finishes highlight Bulldogs’ opening weekend
The Bulldogs placed well at each of the four regattas they competed in this past weekend, including overall victories at the Harry Anderson and the Bears Invite, as well as second-place finishes at Pine Trophy and Toni Deutsch.
Melanie Heller, Contributing Photographer
The Yale sailing teams sent sailors to four different regattas this weekend. The crews secured first-place finishes at the Harry Anderson Trophy and Bears Invite and second-place finishes at the Pine Trophy and Tony Deutsch Regatta.
Competing on home waters at the Yale Corinthian Yacht Club, the co-ed teams dominated the Harry Anderson Trophy. Ben Markert ’23 and Carmen Cowles ’25 prevailed in the A division.
“Sailing with [Markert], we focused on playing to our strengths and capitalizing on high-percentage moves,” Cowles told the News. “Overall, I’m proud of how [Markert] and I sailed this weekend, it being the first time we’ve competed together, and I’m excited for the many weekends to come.”
The Elis entered another boat in the A division, featuring Mia Nicolosi ’25, Helena Ware ’23 and Meredith Ryan ’23. That crew continued the Bulldogs’ dominant ways in the event, finishing in third place. Yale’s two teams in the B division finished first and eighth, leaving the regatta with an overall team victory across both divisions.
Markert, as one of the veteran presences on the team, recounted some of the successes and struggles the team experienced at the event.
“The conditions were tricky, and there are certainly some areas to work on, but we sailed well enough to take the win home again,” Markert said. “I thought that our ability to put the occasional bad race behind us and move forward with a clear head was crucial. The nature of light wind and choppy waves can make for uneven score lines and frustrating racing, but I thought our team did a great job staying level-headed and sailing smart.”
Competing on the Charles River at the Toni Deutsch regatta, the women’s team finished second in the A division and fourth in the B division, earning them second place in the event overall behind their rivals from Harvard.
Emma Cowles ’25 sailed with rookie Carmen Berg ’26 in the A division. The sophomore explained some of the areas where the two excelled as well as where they found some difficulties in their first regatta together.
“The regatta had its challenges with shifty conditions, typical of the Charles,” Emma Cowles said. “[Berg] and I worked on keeping a clear head and adapting our game plan as conditions changed. One area that went well was our starts. Our communication was crucial to having a good acceleration and being full-speed at ‘go.’”
The co-ed team also sent three more teams to the Bears Invite at Brown, where they were only able to sail three races because of a lack of wind. However, even in limited action, the Bulldogs still managed to dominate, with their squads finishing in first, second and 10th place.
Lastly, the Bulldogs sent last year’s national match racing champions —a lineup featuring skipper Jack Egan ’25 and a crew consisting of Nicholas Davies ’24, Megan Grimes ’24 and Christophe Chaumont ’23 — to compete for the Pine Trophy at the Coast Guard Academy.
The team finished the event in second place out of eight competing teams. By placing among the top four, the Bulldogs earned the right to compete in the New England Match Race Championship.
“Overall we are happy with how the weekend went,” Egan said. “The Pine is a qualifier to another qualifier regatta, so top four was always the goal… Our risk management and overall strategy this regatta went well, but an area which can always be improved is our cohesiveness while sailing the boat, which always improves with time.”
Next weekend, the co-ed team will defend their home territory in the Yale Invite, and send out crews to compete in the Hatch Brown Trophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where they won both the A and C divisions last year.
The women’s team will return to the Charles River to compete for the Regis Trophy where their two boats finished first and second last year.