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Lanzarote International Regatta kicks off Sunday

by US Sailing Team 20 Mar 09:27 PDT From 21 March 2021
Lanzarote International Regatta © Lanzarote, Spain

Five American skiffs are scheduled to compete in the Lanzarote Winter Series event with racing starting on Sunday, March 21.

US Sailing team members and Team USA Tokyo Athletes, Stephanie Roble (East Troy, Wis) and Maggie Shea (Wilmette, Ill.) will race in the 49erFX class, and the four USST men's teams will compete in the 49er division: Nevin Snow (San Diego, Calif.) and Dane Wilson (Ojai, Calif.), Ian Barrows (St. Thomas, USVI) and Hans Henken (Coronado, Calif.), Andrew Mollerus (Larchmont, NY) and Ian MacDiarmid (Delray Beach, Fla.), and Harry Melges (Fontana, Wis.) and Finn Rowe (Fontana, Wis.).

In the past few months, the US skiff group took various approaches to training. Mollerus and MacDiarmid almost exclusively trained in Europe, Roble and Shea split their time between Europe and the states, and the remaining three men's teams trained together in Florida and California. For Snow, Wilson, Barrows, Henken, Melges, and Rowe, this will be their first time back in international competition in well over a year.

Although Roble, Shea, Mollerus, and MacDiarmid have been training in Europe for months, large events with the international fleet are few and far between. Only a few opportunities remain for the fleets to gather prior to the 2020 Tokyo Games taking place this summer.

"It's been 7 months since we last raced [in Kiel, Germany], and we've been sailing 'full steam ahead' since then," said Roble. "We are super grateful to have the opportunity to race again with the fleet. We have been over here since the end of January and have made a lot of progress on our goals. We don't know how much racing we will have before the Olympics, so we are excited to work our process and learn more in this final push to the Games!"

"This is the first big regatta of the season with a very competitive fleet," said MacDiarmid. "We would love to keep it easy and be able to mix it up with the top boats when gold fleet starts."

"Harry and I are very excited to get back to racing in a big fleet," said Rowe. "It's been over a year since our last international regatta [in Kiel, Germany]. Our biggest goal for this event is to focus on starting."

With athletes both preparing for the upcoming Games in Tokyo and embarking on their campaigns for Paris 2024, all are excited to reconnect with the international fleet to check in on their progress.

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