On the top floor of the waterfront center at SUNY Maritime in The Bronx this past Monday morning sailors were looking forward to three days at the 2014 Malcolm McIntyre team racing clinegatta.
A major draw of the clinegatta was the coaches who were running the event. The coaching team of three top-notch college coaches consisted of lead coach Brian Clancy - head coach of the Cornell University Sailing Team; coach John Pearce - head coach of George Washington University’s sailing team; and coach Chris Klevan - assistant sailing coach at the US Coast Guard Academy.
"It's not all the time that you get to work with college level coaches," said LYC sailor Anna Robling "these guys know how to deal with junior sailors, and I think all of us will have an amazing three days out here."
The clinegatta, which is a combination of a clinic and a regatta, lasted three days and attracted eight teams, each with six junior C420 sailors of all experiences. While most of the teams drew sailors from a single club, one team combined sailors from two nearby clubs. Two clubs had so much interest they were able to make additional teams. The teams competed in collegiate-rigged C420s (no spinnaker or trapezes), with three boats per team.
While conditions were near perfect on the first day, the sailors were at the will of the notorious East River current. “You have to watch out,” Hector McKemey of AYC told me. “You can be sailing along and suddenly your boom could swing over and hit you across the head thanks to the current.”
While the final two days of the event turned into a heated regatta, at the end of the day, it was all about becoming a better sailor. Andy Rochart told me what he thought about the event as a whole. “I think there’s a lot you can get out of this event that isn’t race related. We’re all junior sailors looking to improve our skill, and despite wanting to win, I know that the real reason behind [McIntyre] is to help us become better sailors.
The American YC 1 team won first place in a tie breaker with Riverside YC 2 that was second place, each had 16 wins and 5 losses. Larchmont YC took third place with a 14-7 record. The fourth, fifth and sixth places were also ties among American YC 2, American YC 3 and Noroton YC, each with 11-10 record.