Monday, February 25, 2008

February Sarasota Clinic - Sun and Fun for All!

Last week we had a great clinic at the Sarasota Sailing Center (site of the 2006 USODA Nationals). Trevor and Ale ran a terrific 4 days of sailing with good wind every day, warm sun and a terrific group of sailors from all corners of the US.

The group sailed both out in The Gulf (in search of swells) and in the Bay with its challenging current (and playful dolphins). Sailing including lots of drills, daily fleet races as well as some team racing. It was fun to have kids from LISOT and TeamFor, having just competed hard against each other in the USODA Team Race Mid-Winters, team racing together on the same teams.

But it wasn't just the kids doing all the sailing. During a rudderless race, Ale commandeered an Opti and was seen working his way upwind!

Trevor shot a lot of video from the water, which the kids reviewed each afternoon. Contrary to rumors that LISOT chartered a helicopter for overhead video of starts, it was really Tom Widmeier and David Shaner manning the HeliCAM by hiking all the way up the John Ringling Causeway to get some great shooting angles and video.

On Saturday the Bay was a buzz with a whole host of other classes, including a 29er clinic with some LISOT opti graduates (Warren Anderson, Dave Dellenbaugh), a laser regatta, the local Sarasota Opti fleet, and a board sailing regatta.

With most people staying at the Homewood Suites (a great hotel that Tory Crane found and negotiated a good group rate), the breakfast and dinner was often as a group at the hotel. And one evening a group of the girls got together for a Movie night.

The last evening we had a poolside BBQ around at the hotel. Janet Grapengeter and Tammy Cash made a road trip to Sam's Club and bought a truckload of burgers and hot dogs. Tom Widmeier was Grillmaster Extraordinaire, and Lisa Purton baked fresh brownies and cupcakes for desert.

Thanks to Susie Martin and Lisa Purton for coordinating with the Sarasota Youth Sailing Program. We couldn't have had this clinic without the support of SYS President Ken D'Agostine; Executive Director Stuart Gilfillen and Secretary Patti Tebo for graciously welcoming us to their venue.

The award for furthest traveled goes to Kate and David Shaner for coming all the way from Seattle! Frank Cash and Madison Gates get the "roll out of bed" award for traveling the least distance. And MaryEllen Wefer (with help from Susie and Janet) get the award for making the most lunch sandwiches every day.

Monday, February 18, 2008

LISOT Team 1 & 2 Finish 2nd & 3rd in Team Race Mid Winters

LISOT team race team 1 finished 2rd and team 2 finished 3rd in the first annual USODA Team Race Mid Winters held this weekend at the Clearwater Community Sailing Center in Clearwater, Florida.

14 teams (10 gold, 4 silver) competed. TeamFor A won the event with a strong performance, losing only 1 race.

LISOT 1 and TeamFor A both qualified for the XXII Trofeo Marco Rizzotti Team Race Regatta in Venice, Italy in May 2008.

LISOT team 1 sailors were: Olivia Crane, Andrew Mollerus, Evan Read, Declan Whitmyer

LISOT team 2 sailors were: Lily Katz, Elliott Morrill, Ian Storck, Laura Wefer.

LISOT team 3, with Roger Dorr, Megan Grapengeter-Rudnick, Ty Ingram, Matthew Mollerus, Hannah Morrill sailed a good consolation round and finished with a winning record in that round.

Head coach Trevor Moore and coach Alejandro Primavera did a terrific job working with 3 teams who hadn't sailed much together.

The weather was great - sunny and warm with very good wind on Sunday and Monday. Saturday was a long day with 4-7 knots of shifty breeze. The sea breeze finally filled in around 2:30pm and the RC kept the races going until near 6pm. The sailors came off the water as the sun was setting.

Sunday the breeze built throughout the day from 15 to a solid 20+ in the afternoon from the south with a very steep chop.

On Monday, with storm clouds brewing and a strong cold front approaching, the wind built quickly to 15 knots. The RC decided not to run a final 4 single eliminiation, and the Championship fleet finished their double round robin with 3 flights.

As the skies darkened around 10am, the consolation fleet sailed 2 flights before the RC decided the front was getting too close and ended racing around noon.

As the temperatures dropped sharply and the skies turned ink black, USODA President Robin Kuebel and RC PRO John Vandemoer awarded the trophies (complete with a birthday cake for Elliott). Luckily, the rain held off (just a few sprinkles) and the sun popped back out as everyone finished packing up.

Congratulations to all our LISOT Team Racers.

Thanks to all the Team Race Umpires, lead by head umpire Peter Wilson, for their hard work and counsel to the sailors throughout the regatta.

Full results will be posted on the USODA website.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Valentines Day Regatta Brief

About 170 sailors with 18 from LISOT ascended upon the St. Petersburg Yacht Club in St. Petersburg, FL for the annual Valentines Day Regatta this weekend. After a difficult 1-race day on Saturday the fleet was scheduled for a very early harbor start on Sunday (7:15 AM) . This early start permitted four races in a 12-15 knot northerly with good size chop. The breeze died to 6-8 for the fifth race of the day (six in total). The six races allowd for a throwout. This played a big role in the results as the regatta had many black flags. Preliminary results showed Alec Ruiz-Ramon first, Raul Rios second, Mac Agnese third, Erika Reineke fourth and LISOT's Olivia Crane fifth.

There were difficult conditions both days and all LISOT sailors worked hard whether it was to overcome capsizes or blag flags. Coaches Alejandro Primavera and Colin Merrick kept the focus on never giving up The results show how important this is as many of the leaders had a bad race. Look for a more detailed summary in the next few days. Congratulations to everyone!

Event website -