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Anika Leerssen Wins Sailing National Title

Nov. 7, 1999

NEWPORT, R.I. - Senior Anika Leerseen, sailing in her hometown, won 15 of 16 races to capture the ICYRA Women's Singlehanded sailing championships. Leerssen, who was sixth at the event a year ago, becomes the first Cardinal sailor to take home the Janet Lutz Trophy.

Competing against 15 other outstanding racers from all over North America, Leerssen dominated the field Saturday, winning all eight races in very windy conditions. Leerssen, like many of her Stanford teammates, performs best in high winds, and with more wind on Sunday, Stanford Coach Steve Bourdow figured Leerssen would have few problems. She had no problems, winning seven of eight races and taking eighth in the other. Her point total of 23 (15 firsts and an eighth) easily outdistanced the 61 of runner-up Teresa Brooks of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.

Leerssen is the first Stanford athlete to win an individual national title in sailing. The ICYRA sponsors both a women's and a coed singlehanded national championship. They also sponsor women's dinghy, coed dinghy and team racing championships in the late spring. Stanford was the 1997 team racing national champions.