After eight weeks of hard work, learning, practice and fun, the 85 Severn Sailing Association summer junior program sailors reached a milestone in their sailing careers on Wednesday night when the program concluded with graduation and awards ceremonies.
SSA's Junior Program annually trains dozens of area young people between the ages of 10and 17 in safe boat handling, seamanship, sportsmanship and one-design racing.
It uses a graduated series of classes for three levels of skill using single-handed Optimist Prams for the younger students and double-handed International 420s for older youths.
"It was a really successful summer," said head instructor Sarah Stiles. "I think the kids all got a lot out of it, and we were able to get in a lot of sailing.An important focus of the program this year for the older kids was to start getting them out on larger boats so they don't stop sailing when they turn 16, and we were able to get a lot of them out on J/24s."
The roster of SSA Junior Program alumni is an impressive one in both local/regional and national/international terms, and, Stiles said, this season's largest class, the 17-member Opti-Skipper division, is especially promising for the future.
Stiles was particularly pleased with her students' success in USYRU ladder competition. She pointed out that two young members of the Opti-Skipper class, Jonathan Foye and Ian Burman, will team up to sail in the upcoming Middle Atlantic Midget Championship in New Jersey after toppling the Chesapeake Bay competition.
Other highlights of this season included an exchange visit from a group of young Soviet sailors, which proved exciting for all of the young people, Stiles said.
Severn Sailing Association Junior Series
Opti-Seaman (Guppy Bowl): 1) Emily Rodriguez; 2) Matt Westhoff; 3) Roxanne Bedell. Most Improved: Roxanne Bedell.
Opti-Mate (Turtle Bowl): 1) Justin Nurin; 2) Michael Matney; 3) Scott MacMullen. Most Improved: Brad Soule.
Opti-Skipper (Commodore's Bowl): 1) Jonathan Foye; 2) Karl Schneider; 3) Ian Burman. Most Improved: Patrick Dougherty.
420 Seaman (420 Bowl): 1) Winship Ross; 2) Nils Reuter; 3) Matt Leone. Most Improved: Nils Reuter.
420 Mate (Bailer Bowl): 1) Tim Olson; 2) Keith Matney; 3) Dave Carter. Most Improved: Elizabeth Warwick.
420 Skipper/Racing Skipper (Golden Bowl):1) Drew Mutch; 2) Brad Julian; 3) Liza Hughes. Most Improved: Drew Mutch.
Thursday Night Series
Opti-Seaman: 1) Emily Rodriguez; 2)Matt Westhoff.
Opti-Mate: 1) Michael Matney; 2) Scott MacMullen.
Opti-Skipper: 1) Jon Foye; 2) Ian Burman; 3) Karl Schneider.
420 Seaman: 1) Mike Casey.
420 Mate: 1) Kris Honey; 2) Noah Donaldson; 3) Tim Olson.
420 Skipper/Racing Skipper: 1) Tina Hughes; 2) Drew Mutch.
Sandy MacVickar Sportsmanship Award: Kris Honey, 420 Mate.
Pat Empey Trophy/Outstanding Girl Sailor: Emily Rodriguez.
Welch Trophy/Outstanding Boy Sailor: Will James.
Richard C. Bartlett Trophy/Long-Term Dedication to Sailing: Garrett Herrmann.
Labrot Trophy: Brad Julian.
Marlin Spike Award: Scott MacMullen.
Nicest 420 Skipper: Liza Hughes.
Best Team Racer: Will James.
Best 420 Crew: Hope Menocal-Rankin.
With tricky but very sailable winds last Sunday, SSA's annual three-race Ed Hoyt Regatta for keelboats was a great experience for some of the fledgling J/22 crews.
The regatta, which shared the course with the annualDaysailer Invitational, has its origins in the Tempest class, which extended
the invitation to compete to other one-design keelboats. In addition to the Tempests and J/22s, starts for Soling and J/24 sailors also were contested as well this year.
For Kathy Coxe and herPink Cadillac team, including boat partners Pat James and Marti Roberts, plus guest member Steve MacLaughlin, their win in the J/22 classwas confirmation that their work at learning to handle their new boat as a team is paying off.
"It was all Olympic courses and we had good conditions," Coxe said. "It was blowing about eight to 12 and very fluky. You had to keep your eye on the weather all the time to watch out for the holes and watch out for the gusts."
Coxe said she and her team members were enthusiastic about the regatta as well as their performance.
"We loved it," she said. "It was really good because we learned a lot. We've had a lot of help from a lot of people, and we learn more and more every time. The boat is fast, the sails arefast, and we're really beginning to think and work like a team."
Confusion over a second-race mark change resulted in all but three ofthe 19 J/24s sailing in the regatta mistakenly rounding the change mark rather than the original, and receiving a 20-point DNF score (didnot finish) in that race.
Ed Hoyt Regatta
Tempest (4 starters): 1) Bob Glass, Bowie, 4.5 pts. (1-1-3); 2) David Lavis, Arnold, 4.75pts. (2-2-1); 3) Edgar Hoyt, Annapolis, 10 pts. (4-4-2).
Soling (7 starters): 1) Peter Gleitz, Annapolis, 3.5 pts. (1- 1-2); 2) StuartWalker, Annapolis, 4.75 pts. (2-2-1); 3) Tom Carrico, Arnold, 11 pts. (5-5-3).