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LTJG Barnes & Dallman-Weiss ready for 2020 Olympic Year

by Carol Bareuther 9 Jan 09:07 PST 20-25 January 2020
LTJG Nikole Barnes and Lara Dallman-Weiss competing in Japan in 2019 at the 2020 Summer Olympic sailing venue in Enoshima, Japan © Sailing Energy

Harder. Better. Faster. Stronger. These adjectives aptly recap as well as remain the mantra of the U.S. Coast Guard's LTJG Nikole Barnes' and Lara Dallman-Weiss' Team Perfect Vision Sailing's (PVS) campaign to represent the U.S.A. in the Women's 470 at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Japan.

This winter, and starting this month, Barnes and Dallman-Weiss are laser focused on two major U.S. Olympic Team qualifiers: the Miami World Cup, set for January 20-25, in Miami, Florida, U.S.A., and the 470 World Championship, in Palma, Spain, March 13-21, 2020. The U.S. will have an opportunity to quality the country for the 2020 Olympic Games at the Miami World Cup. Additionally, the duo will kick-off their year by racing in the 470 North American Championships, January 10-12, in Miami.

"Our goals are to qualify the country for the Games, to qualify as the U.S.A. 470 Women's Team representatives for the Games, and to train in Japan-like conditions in preparation for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games," says LTJG Barnes, who once qualified will be the first U.S. Coast Guard Officer to qualify for the Olympic Games, while Dallman-Weiss will be the first one in her family to qualify for the Games.

Second Half of 2019 - Recap

The 'harder' adjective came into play last July and August when Barnes and Dallman-Weiss spent two months in the Olympic venue of Enoshima, Japan, and learned the team's weaknesses. While PVS weren't able to successfully clasp the brass ring of Olympic qualification during the trio of major regattas, they indeed got much closer to this goal with each event.

Specifically, Barnes' and Dallman-Weiss scored one top 10 finish at the 2019 470 World Championships, two top 10 scores at the 2019 Olympic Test event (of which they were the U.S. Women's 470 team to quality), and three top 10s at the 2020 World Cup Series Round 1. The duo pit their skills against an elite fleet filled with one- and two-time Olympic medalists as well as nature's curve balls such as a typhoon, earthquake and excessive heat.

'Better' took root in the fall at the Triple Crown Series, held at the Oakcliff Sailing Center, in Oyster Bay, New York, U.S.A. Here, mindset, one of the most undervalued and understudied part of athletics, played a big role leading Barnes and Dallman-Weiss to a win as well as earn consistent top three finishes.

'Faster' happened in the past two months when Team PVS participated in four intense training camps in Miami with six other Olympic 470 Men's and Women's teams. Here, they studied, analyzed, tested and succeeded in puzzling out the best ways to make the boat go faster in all conditions. Ideally, Miami provided Japan-like conditions during this time with 20-plus knot winds and 5- to 8-foot waves.

"We had two incredible months of training in the Gulf Stream, learning how to balance the boat in all size and shape waves while paying close attention to racing strategy at the same time. (Coach) Robby (Bisi) has helped us realize that we can't both be focused 100% on speed and tactics and have naturally divided responsibilities into what suits our team. November was largely dedicated to speed and technique with our training partners from the Netherlands, and December was our time to race. We are very proud of the training we have done so far and excited for the trials to begin," says Dallman-Weiss.

'Stronger' has come in the form of mental fortitude and physical fitness, the latter based on a well-fueled dietitian-directed eating plan and six-day-a-week muscle-building program with a professional trainer.

"Ultimately this season we are looking at self-development, pushing hard and continuing to learn more about the 470. The results will come and our hard work and enjoyment of the learning process will continue. At the end of the day, we promised Mount Fuji that we would be back to sail next to her on the Olympic Waters and we don't want to break that promise," says Barnes.

Support the Team

To support LTJG Barnes and Dallman-Weiss, donate to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Alumni Association's (USCGAA) Elite Athletic Excellence Fund.

"The U.S. Coast Guard Academy Alumni Association is proud to financially support Barnes and Dallman-Weiss in their Olympic quest" said Trueson Tarinelli, Director of Athletics Development. "Thanks to a number of generous alumni, classes, and friends, the Alumni Association has been able to support Perfect Vision Sailing since summer of 2018. Their success and specifically the success of LTJG Barnes (as the Coast Guard's first-ever active duty Olympic athlete) represents a unique and tremendous opportunity for the service and the Academy. The Alumni Association's Elite Athlete Excellence Fund is the vessel that has helped make this possible."

Supporters can also join the PVS team by donating to their GoFundMe page.

Beyond the USCGAA, Barnes and Dallman-Weiss would like to thank everyone who has and is supporting their PVS Olympic campaign, from those who house and feed them at global venues and donate materials and time, to those who contribute monetarily to the campaign.

The Team

LTJG Barnes is a native of St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, and member of both the St. Francis Yacht Club and St. Thomas Yacht Club. Dallman-Weiss is a native of Shoreview, MN, and member of the New York Yacht Club.

Support Team Perfect Vision Sailing - 2020 Olympics

To support Barnes and Dallman-Weiss, donate to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Alumni Association's Elite Athletic Excellence Fund. Or, on GoFundMe here.

For more information about LTJG Barnes and Dallman-Weiss' Olympic campaign, visit perfectvisionsailing.com or Email: . Follow on Facebook and Instagram @perfectvisionsailing

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