by Jan Harley
ICSA/Gill National Championship.
Boston College junior skipper Taylor Canfield (St. Thomas, USVI) with senior crew Sandra Williams (Chicago, Ill.)
Light air again foiled the sailing plans of the 18 schools that had trained and competed all year to be able to challenge for the 2010 ICSA/Gill National Championship taking place on Lake Mendota from June 1-3. The championship is the focal point of the college sailing year, and its coveted title has been won by 19 schools over the last 42 years: USC, San Diego State, Tulane, Harvard, Yale, Tufts, URI, UCLA, Kings Point, BU, Charleston, UC Irvine, ODU, Navy, Dartmouth, St. Mary’s, Hawaii, Hobart & William Smith and Georgetown.
Today a first-time winner of the title – Boston College – joins that fraternity having taken and held the lead position through the first two days of the championship. The title also earns BC another rarer entry in the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association’s history books: as the sixth school to win all three spring championships (ICSA Women’s Nationals, ICSA/APS Team Race Nationals, and the ICSA/Gill National Championship) along with Navy, ODU, Tufts, St. Mary’s and Harvard.
'The conditions made it a tiny bit anticlimactic, but it feels good,' said Greg Wilkinson, Boston College Head Coach, about the title win. 'We arrived at the lake this morning and, as it has been for the last week, it was glass. We talked as a team and reminded each other that we would be sailing . . . we tried to convince ourselves that we would be sailing. I’m proud to be in that group of schools that have won all three championships. My phone hasn’t stopped buzzing with calls from Boston College staff. BC is proud of the sailing team and it’s unfortunate that school is not in session now so that we can celebrate. We’ll probably do something on campus in the fall to celebrate.'
On the water for Boston College in A-Division was junior skipper Tyler Sinks (San Diego, Calif.) who sailed with crew Lucy Wallace (Middletown, R.I.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.), both juniors, and freshman Laura McKenna (Palo Alto, Calif.). In B-Division junior skipper Taylor Canfield (St. Thomas, USVI) sailed all nine races with senior crew Sandra Williams (Chicago, Ill.) to win that division. BC’s final score of 127 points reflects 88 points from A-Division plus 39 from B-Division.
No doubt the wait onshore was painful for the teams in second through fifth place coming into the final day. With only a 16-point spread between first and fifth place, had even one race been sailed the outcome could have been vastly different. 'All were very close and everyone wanted to sail,' said Mitch Brindley, President of ICSA. 'In one race they could have made some significant steps. And that was very frustrating.'
Harvard University (Cambridge, Mass.), heads home with second-place in the overall standings. With a final score of 132 points, only five points stood between them and the title. Tied on 142 points, Brown University (Providence, R.I.) and St. Mary’s College (St. Mary’s, Md.), the defending champion, finish third and fourth overall. Georgetown University (Washington, D.C.), winners of A-Division, are fifth with 143 points.
The Format: At the ICSA/Gill National Championship each of the 18 schools entered – after qualifying via one of two semi-final events held in early May – fields a separate A and B division team. Weather permitting, each division sails 20- to 30-minute fleet races in rotation and a team's final score is determined by the combined results of its sailors in both divisions.
The championship was hosted by the University of Wisconsin, utilizing their fleet of 420s, from the regatta base at Memorial Union Terrace. For results and additional information on the championships, visit: http://2010nationals.collegesailing.org/
(Final Standings After Two Days of Racing: School, Hometown, A + B + Total Points)
June 1-3, 2010 - ICSA/Gill National Championship
Boston College (Chestnut Hill, Mass.), 88 + 39 = 127
Harvard University (Cambridge, Mass.), 74 + 58 = 132
Brown University (Providence, R.I.), 82 + 60 + 142
St. Mary's College (St. Mary’s City, Md.), 78 + 64 = 142
Georgetown University (Washington, D.C.), 53 + 90 + 143
Yale University (New Haven, Conn.), 79 + 76 = 155
U.S. Naval Academy (Annapolis, Md.), 91 + 72 = 163
University of Vermont (Burlington, Vt.), 65 + 106 = 171
College of Charleston (Charleston, S.C.), 112 + 63 + 175
Tufts University (Medford, Mass.), 83 + 99 = 182
Hobart & William Smith Colleges (Geneva, N.Y.), 123 + 65 = 188
Salve Regina University (Newport, R.I.), 107 + 86 = 193
Roger Williams University (Bristol, R.I.), 96 + 98 = 194
Old Dominion University (Norfolk, Va.), 119 + 95 = 214
University of South Florida (St. Petersburg, Fla.), 98 + 127 = 225
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (Kings Point, N.Y.), 115 + 110 = 225
SUNY Maritime College (Throggs Neck, N.Y.), 118 + 115 = 233
Stanford University (Palo Alto, Calif.), 119 + 118 = 237
Catch the Replay: Noted sailing commentator Gary Jobson (Annapolis, Md.) will produce a program on the ICSA/Gill National Championship for ESPNU that will air Friday, July 9 at 8:00 p.m. EDT.
ICSA is the governing authority for sailing competition at colleges and universities throughout the United States and in some parts of Canada. To learn more please visit: www.collegesailing.org. ICSA is sponsored by Gill, Annapolis Performance Sailing, Marlow Ropes, Quantum Sails, LaserPerformance and US SAILING: www.gillna.com, www.apsltd.com, www.bainbridgeint.com, www.quantumsails.com, www.laserperformance.com/main/ and www.ussailing.org