It’s been a busy few months, but this post should bring everyone up to date on what’s been happening with Team Rhode Island, starting with our time in Miami:
We Need Your Help!
We’ve been down in Miami for about 3 weeks now, putting Weetamoe back together and getting back out on the water. After taking the month of October off, it’s been great to be out sailing again! We were able to train with the Canadian Nacra17 team for a few days before they they headed to Abu Dhabi, and sailing with them really helped bring us up to speed quickly and efficiently. We feel as if we haven’t missed a beat! Over the past few weeks we’ve been focusing on taking everything we learned from Worlds to turn our weak spots into strengths.
While the sailing side of things has been going well, our boat is in need of some help. We need to raise $4,000 to fix our daggerboard cases. We’ve tried everything we can think of, but this repair job will require more than our expertise.Therefore, we’ve started a GoFundMe campaign in an effort to raise the necessary money to get Weetamoe fixed in time for our next regatta, the ISAF World Cup in Miami, which begins on January 25.
Please follow this link to make a donation: GoFundMe Team Rhode Island. We’d appreciate any donation to this fund, no matter how small, and please help us spread the word!!
ISAF World Championships in Santander:
Once our boat was fully rigged, we headed out on the water and spent the remaining weeks leading up to the regatta training as much as possible. We were lucky enough to have Jeremy’s brother Nathan come out and coach us for a few days, which proved incredibly beneficial. We definitely noticed a huge gain in our sailing over those three days with such a talented coach.
After Nathan left, we rotated between sailing by ourselves, practice races with other international teams, and US training sessions with the teams that had arrived. We learned so much in a very short amount of time, adapting our sailing to every piece of advice we were given. By the time the regatta rolled around, we had made a lot of changes to our technique, and were feeling fairly confident about our chances of making gold fleet.
Unfortunately, our results at the regatta were not what we were hoping for. The wind was all over the place; we couldn’t sail the first day because there was no wind, and then when we did sail it was shifty and puffy and unlike anything we had practiced in. Transitional breeze is difficult enough to sail in, let alone against the top Nacra sailors in the world. Not making gold fleet was a disappointment, but we now know where our weaknesses are, and we are working to never repeat such a result. We took the hit in stride and focused on the rest of the regatta, which unfortunately for us was extremely windy. There were days where we didn’t sail because there was too much breeze, a stark change from the first day of the event. One of the days we sailed 4 races in almost 30kts; it was full on nuclear at times, with boats flipping on down winds and puffs so large we almost flipped on the upwinds. With the exception of one devastating capsize, we held our own fairly nicely, racking up a string of 4th place finishes. We were definitely the lightest team out there, so it felt good knowing that we could handle ourselves in such an extreme condition.
The crazy breeze meant that we didn’t get as many races in as we would’ve liked, but that’s out of our control. We took away a lot of information and new ideas so that when we next compete, we won’t be battling for a top position in Silver Fleet, we’ll be battling for a podium finish.
We decided to take October easy after such an intense event, focusing on getting ourselves ready for the next round of training and regattas. It can be hard sometimes to recognize when it’s time to take a step back and let your mind and body recover. October was the perfect month to step away from the boat because there aren’t any events or training camps. Louisa focused on gaining muscle and coaching at Brown University, and Jeremy focused on his work at North Sails. While it was an uneventful time campaign wise, it was really beneficial for both of us, and we feel more than ready for our winter training!!
Thank you, as always, to our sponsors TeamOne Newport and Sail Newport. Both have been incredibly supportive as we fight our way towards a gold medal.