Bears Sail Strong in Season Home Opener

Bears Sail Strong in Season Home Opener

NEW LONDON, Conn – The Offshore Sailing Team hosted the J-70 Open this past weekend with six visiting teams from New England and the Mid-Atlantic including USMMA-Kings Point, NY Maritime and Massachusetts Maritime. A busy weekend on the Thames as the sailing team was also hosting the Women's Emily Wick Trophy making for a busy weekend at Jacobs Rock and on the race course!

After several hours of light breeze that saw two races abandoned, the wind picked up but continued to be unstable for the entire afternoon. Six races were sailed in winds ranging from the south, north and northwest with strong ebbing current throughout the day. This made the racing very challenging for competitors and race management alike. The Coast Guard team of Jesse McKnight, Zachary Groce, Toby Ferl and Chris Jinsei Alemania started off hot and stayed at the front of the fleet throughout the day. When racing wrapped up the Bears had a one point lead over Rhode Island with Vermont four points back.

Sunday brought terrific spring conditions on the river with Southerly winds ranging from 6-14 knots with minimal current which made for great racing. Six more races were sailed with Coast Guard, Rhode Island and Vermont continuing to battle it out for the top three spots. The home team was represented by Eric Gimple, Gregory Gaskel, Megan Wadleigh and Jared Gaudineer. In the end, URI sailing consistently well all day won the regatta with 25 points. The Bears finished second overall with 30 points and Vermont was third with 35 points.

The Offshore team will turn their attention to Melges 32 sailing this week before another J-70 Open on April 20-21.