Jan. 4, 2012
Top colleges, preps meet in Long Beach
Roger Williams University, an emerging collegiate power from Bristol, R.I., and perennial high school powerhouse Point Loma of San Diego will lead their respective teams into the 27th annual Rose Bowl Regatta Saturday and Sunday.
The event, based at the Alamitos Bay Yacht Club, is hosted by the USC Sailing Team and organized by the US Sailing Center of Long Beach.
As many as 30 college teams from 11 states and Washington D.C. and 60 high school teams from the West Coast are entered. The collegians and high schoolers will race CFJ dinghies with two-person coed crews---male, female and mixed---on courses off the Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier in the Long Beach outer harbor. The high school Silver fleet will race inside Alamitos Bay off the beach adjacent to ABYC. Each school will be represented by A and B boats, combining scores.
Racing will start at 11 a.m. each day, conditions permitting. The pier will be open to spectators, with concessions and comfort.
The college fleet will feature several all-American skippers and crews, including Sydney Bolger, a top female honoree and ABYC member from Long Beach.
Boston College is the defending champion, but Roger Williams' rapidly developing team, ranked seventh a year ago, emerged from Mount Hope Bay in Bristol, R.I., to win the Team Race national title last spring and went on to win the top national coed ranking in fleet racing in November.
The Hawks' coach is Amanda Callahan, who previously coached at Stanford and Tufts, which were ninth and 13th in the latest coed rankings. She has applied that experience to building the team at Roger Williams.
"That's the benefit of coaching in a newer program," she said. "You get to pave your own way. The school has been growing, too. We're hoping a boathouse is next."
Point Loma, currently leading Corona del Mar and Newport Harbor in the 2011-2012 season for the Roy E. Disney Trophy, will try to extend its dominance of the prep competition, now standing at seven consecutive Rose Bowl Regatta championships---most in feisty battles with Newport Harbor, which has placed second in the last six events.
The Pointers, long on talent, have entered three varsity and two junior varsity teams, currently led by Jake Reynolds from last year's winning varsity team.
Jan 8 2012
Navy, Point Loma claim Rose Bowl glory
Winning the 27th Rose Bowl Regatta in little CFJ dinghies was fun for the U.S. Naval Academy sailors this weekend, but more sobering duty will soon call the seniors on the team.
Jason Carminati, the captain from Yonkers, N.Y. who skippered the Midshipmen's A boat in a close victory over Stanford, will start training to be a Navy Seal.
Alice Hong, his crew from nearby Palos Verdes: "I'll be going to an aircraft carrier."
Caroline Lockett, from Boston, who crewed for Michael Grove on the B boat: "I'll be going to flight school."
Grove, from San Francisco, is only a sophomore with his near future in Annapolis, but he'll carry a new weight as leader of the team.
"I didn't really know what to expect here," he said, "but it was great to win."
After Day 1 Navy led Stanford by only two points in the 27-boat fleet but stretched that to nine, 61 to 72, at the end with solid, steady sailing while keeping another eye on a brawl among St. Mary's of Maryland, 77; Georgetown, 78, and College of Charleston (S.C.), 79. USC, the host team, was a commendable sixth at 115.
Then there was---no surprise---Point Loma High School from San Diego, whose Varsity won its eighth consecutive Rose Bowl Gold Division championship while its Junior Varsity 1 and JV 2 teams romped to second and fourth places among 27 schools from throughout the West Coast. Cathedral Catholic, also from Diego, found room to squeeze into third.
How does one school collect so much talent?
Coach Steve Hunt said, "We're just really lucky that they all happen to live in Point Loma, and we had a great freshman team this year with a lot of light sailors."
Ideally, Hunt said, a CFJ crew combined won't top 260 pounds, "but most of the young ones are around a hundred."
One lightweight is Maddy Brownsea, a 15-year-old girl who crewed for the team's mainstay, senior Jake Reynolds on the A boat. Johannes McElvain, Grant Rickon and Kyle Sutter alternated on the B boat.
"It was hard," Brownsea said, "with a lot of people working together."
Surprisingly, that included opponents.
"We talk to other crews," Brownsea said. "We tell them things about the conditions and stuff and they tell us things. It helps everybody."
Part of that involved the weekend conditions of light and shifty breeze that were unusual for Long Beach. Saturday had 2-6 knots and Sunday 6-8 made more difficult by a day that started with a brisk morning Santa Ana from the northeast before racing started and through the afternoon swung from northeast to west (140 degrees to 290) before settling in from the southwest.
Schools from the north dominated the 32-team Silver fleet, led by Palo Alto/Harken, Sir Francis Drake from San Francisco, Athenian from Danville and Bellingham from Washington state.
The event was based at the Alamitos Bay Yacht Club in Long Beach, a.k.a. the Aquatic Capital of America, and was hosted by the USC Sailing Team and organized by the US Sailing Center of Long Beach.