'Navy leading final race to the finish to seal their victory'
Jahn S. Tihansky
On Saturday, ten teams turned up for the 2013 Shields Trophy Regatta, the trophy for service and maritime schools sailed in the Naval Academy’s fleet of 44’ sloops.
Saturday brought challenging conditions with a building southerly and unusually large waves and chop for the Chesapeake. Navy jumped out to a quick lead winning the first race and a close second in race 2. Cal Maritime started slowly with a 2,4 but came on strong to win the final two races of the day. After the first two races the wind was gusting into the mid 20s. With equipment preservation in mind, PRO Fred Dersch opted to restrict sail selection to number three jibs and no spinnakers for the final two.
This put a huge premium on starts and upwind boat handling. At the end of the day, Cal was in first with Navy one point back and NY Maritime one point ahead of KP.
The winning USNA crew - L-R Alexa Ciarolla, skipper Andy Beeler, Kya McAlister, Roscoe Thomas, Charlie Morris, Nick Woods, Jackson Niketas, Neil McMillan, coach Jahn Tihansky - Jahn S. Tihansky
Sunday – With the cold front passed, conditions for the day were typical fall Annapolis with NNW winds starting in the high teens. Most teams opted for number three jibs for the first leg of race 1 of the day and it was unclear which was best. However, the breeze was dropping and Navy elected to change downwind which proved decisive as they passed Coast Guard and Cal Maritime to take the win. For the second race, Cal nailed the pin and worked the favored left side while Navy found themselves buried after the start. Cal went wire to wire for the win while Navy scratched back to a fifth just nipping Maine Maritime at the finish.
For the final race, Cal was sitting on a three point lead but no doubt nervous given the flukey conditions. NY Maritime won the pin with Navy safely to windward while Cal couldn’t fetch the pin due to the building ebb. NY Maritime went up and down in the lead with Navy in second and Cal Maritime back in sixth and forced left outside a number of boats. Navy stayed in phase to slip past NY and rounded the last weather mark well ahead of NY. Cal did not give up, passing two boats. In the end it was not enough as Navy held the tiebreak which ended up being the deciding factor.
A huge thanks to PRO Fred Dersch and his NASS Race Committee team who braved the big conditions Saturday to get in the full slate of races.
Thanks also to the volunteer safety officers who were treated to some great entertainment on the race course.
For additional information, please contact Regatta Chairman Jahn Tihansky.
1. Navy 1,2,2,4,1,5,1 16
2. Cal Maritime 2,4,1,1,3,1,4 16
3. Kings Point 6,3,3,2,5,4,6 29
4. NY Maritime 4,1,5,5,6,7,2 30
5. Mass Maritime 3,6,4,3,4,2,9 31
6. Coast Guard 5,5,6,9,2,3,8 38
7. Maine Maritime 8,8,8,8,9,6,3 50
8. Royal Military College 7,7,7,6,10,10,5 52
9. St. Mary's College 9,10,10, 11, 7,8,7 62
10. Army 10,9,9,10,8,9,10 65
College Sailing website
by Jahn Tihansky
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11:46 PM Sun 22 Sep 2013GMT
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