by Dana Paxton
US Sailing has announced the names of 11 youth sailors that have qualified for the 2012 Youth World Team and who will alsol receive invitations to represent the United States at the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Youth World Championship in Dublin, Ireland, from July 12-21.
Mitchell Kiss with US Sailing’s High Performance Director/Head Coach Kenneth Andreasen.
The U.S. Youth Worlds Team members were selected based on first-place finishes in their respective classes at US Sailing’s two 2012 ISAF Youth World Qualifier events, hosted by Alamitos Bay Yacht Club, Jan. 14-16, and hosted at the Tradewinds Regatta, Jan. 13-15.
'This team represents the best of youth sailing in the U.S.,' said US Sailing’s High Performance Director/Head Coach Kenneth Andreasen (Tampa, Fla.). 'The majority of our 2011 Team aged-out of youth competition and transitioned to our Olympic development classes. Having a structured pipeline is crucial to our future medal potential, and I am truly excited at the level of talent coming up the ranks. We now have a focused effort and have closed the gap between youth sailing and Olympic sailing.'
The members of US Sailing’s 2012 Youth World Team are:
•Laser Radial (boy’s one person dinghy): Mitchell Kiss (Holland, Mich.)
•Laser Radial (girl’s one person dinghy): Nikki Medley (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
•International 420s (boy’s two person dinghy): Harry Koeppel (Mamaroneck, N.Y.) and Charles Bocklet (Waccubuc, N.Y.)
•International 420s (girl’s two person dinghy): Megan Grapengeter-Rudnick (Darien, Conn.) and Abigail Rohman (Larchmont, N.Y.)
•29er (open high performance dinghy): Quinn Wilson (Ojai, Calif.) and Dane Wilson (Ojai, Calif.)
•RS:X Boys: Lucas Gonzalez (Miami, Fla.)
•RS:X Girls: Margot Samson (Belleair, Fla.)Multihull: Jeremy Herrin (Sarasota, Fla.) and Sam Armington (Sarasota, Fla.)
Mitchell Kiss, 17, is the only returning member of the 2011 Youth Worlds Team. His impressive sailing resume includes Laser Radial wins at the High School National Singlehanded Championship and Orange Bowl regatta. A member of the US Sailing Development Team since 2008, Kiss is in his final year of youth eligibility and is determined to bring home a medal in 2012. 'I’m really excited about going to Worlds and going for the win,' he said.
The Youth Worlds Team members are also named to the 2012 US Sailing Development Team. The team, which is annually named by US Sailing, is comprised of the country’s top sailors in the classes selected for the 2012 Youth Worlds and the Olympic classes.
For more information on the 2012 US Sailing Development Team selection, click here.
ISAF Youth World Championship website