May 28, 2009
San Francisco, Calif. - After two long days of racing in mostly breezy conditions, the Stanford Cardinal finished the ICSA Women's National Championship in 12th place overall. While the Cardinal seemed to improve upon the consistency of their starts by the second day, it was other untimely misfortunes that prevented the Cardinal from finding a more competitive rhythm. Penalty turns, capsizes, and a slight speed disadvantage compared to the top few teams could not be compensated with the smart sailing that had brought the team such great success throughout the season.
Representing the Cardinal were sailors Hannah Burroughs '11, Catherine Cu '09, Laura Garvey `12, Taylor Grimes `09, Megan Grove '10, and Carolyn Prioleau '12. Along with Head Coach John Vandemoer and Assistant Coach Erik Storck, this Stanford squad not only carried themselves well throughout the regatta while competing, but also played gracious hosts to the rest of college sailing's finest women sailors.
In A Division, Grimes skippered the entire regatta while crews Prioleau and Grove traded off duties at the front of the boat. They showed much improvement on Sunday, posting five single-digit finishes out of the eight races they sailed. Coach Vandemoer, toward the conclusion of the event on Wednesday, sighed, "They sailed extremely well...extremely smart sailing. They were just a touch off the pace upwind compared to the top few teams." Downwind, however, the both Cardinal boats showed exciting speed, and the A Division boat was so aggressive and so fast as to receive the praise - and a "speeding ticket" penalty - from the chief judge of the event. The A Division boat ended the regatta in 11th place in A Division, averaging a 9.6 in the fourteen race regatta.
In B Division, skipper Burroughs with crew Cu showed that their season-long effort to improve has made them competitive with the nation's top competitors. They ended the regatta in 14th place in B Division, and showed moments of brilliance throughout the regatta. Most notably, a win in race four proved that this team has what it takes to be at the top. With a little more consistency, which is the critical strategy in collegiate style racing, the Cardinal B Division boat may have landed higher in the results.
Nevertheless, the Stanford Cardinal comes to the end of a highly successful 2008-09 season in which they asserted Pacific Coast Collegiate Sailing Conference (PCCSC) dominance and posted impressive finishes in several tough intersectional regattas, where the best teams of each district come together to compete. At this year's nationals, the Cardinal was the only team to make it to the National Championship for the PCCSC and was the first college in the final rankings that is not located on the East Coast. Congratulations to these sailors for a great season!
To read and see more about the action of the 2009 ICSA Women's National Championship, head to www.collegesailing.org for complete results, www.2009icsa.blogspot.com for colorful commentary, www.sailgroove.com for video footage, and www.kattack.com for race analysis.