The Boston contingent had a successful weekend, Fleet racing on the Charles River at Boston University on Saturday saw Ian Martin and Andy Bryson take to the FJs in the ‘A’ division, with Jamie Reid and Dave Cheshire sailing alternate races in the ‘B’ division. 15 races were sailed in medium airs made quite shifty by the surrounding skyscrapers. Ian and Andy sailed consistently to finish second in their division while Jamie and Dave showed the B division the way round the small Olympic triangle course. Overall BUSA won a tiebreak from Tufts.
Sunday morning dawned at Harvard’s sailing centre (a little further up the Charles River from BU) but the wind was nowhere to be seen. The Team racing event therefore started in a laid back fashion, and after a quick carbo-loading session at Dunkin’ Donuts the team took to the water in FJs and Larks at around lunchtime. Busa convincingly beat the other Teams from Boston University and Tufts, and saw off Harvard ladies in the final, showing that they have refined their light airs technique to the point where our average crew weight of 310 lbs. can be competitive against American boats some 40lbs. lighter.
Most of the best college sailors in the region headed to Dartmouth for a weekend fleet racing event, and here the BUSA teams of Andy Cornah and Sam Carter, and Mark Lees and Chris Martin found the light and shifty lake conditions challenging. The competition was much tougher here than in Boston, so the same high standard of sailing was only enough to secure 12 place overall out of 24 teams. Andy and Sam secured 14th place in the A division, Mark and Chris came 10th. Evidently weight is going to be a factor in the trophy matches if the wind is light, but this has only really held the team up in fleet racing, so everybody generally feels good about the forthcoming trophy matches.
On Monday the 15th, the teams reunited at the picturesque Lake Champlain at the University of Vemont in Burlington. After a fairly average training session in FJs, half the team headed to Montreal in Canada for dinner and passport embellishment while the rest enjoyed the splendid (as ever) hospitality of our American hosts.
Wednesday the 16th sees the team sailing with Columbia University in Long Island sound, in sight of the New York City skyline. BUSA are focussed on preparations for the first trophy match – the Laser Team Trophy at Kings Point Merchant Marine Academy on Friday the 19th. However, the viability of the program for the rest of the week depends on the path of Hurricane Isabel, currently forecast to reach the New York area in the next few days…