Bates Sailing Club: Fall Season Recap

The Bates sailing club had a strong fall season and eagerly awaits the spring! (Photo courtesy of Claire Deplanck '20)

The Bates sailing club is one of 13 club sports recognized by the Department of Athletics. Below is a newsletter to wrap up the 2019 fall sailing season from club co-captains Sarah Herde '21 and Claire Deplanck '20.

Dear Saltcats and friends of Saltcats,

We write to you as we wrap up our 2019 Fall Sailing Season with boat move and our annual banquet, which happened last Saturday. The season brought many new faces, not only from the incoming first-year class, but from many others as well. Bates Sailing keeps growing and now has a roster of 40 active members. We were lucky enough to have warm weather to sail in for most of the season, but with such warmth came many glassy days on Taylor Pond and, therefore, Wallingford donuts!

Practices, run by the revered Peter Garcia with the indispensable help of Robert, consisted of many team racing drills with a side of fleet racing. Whether racing twice-around the course would influence the results was perpetually contested at seemingly every practice. Coupled with this, Thursday Race Series witnessed a lively competitive atmosphere on the water. With improving starts and more sailors understanding the rights of way (hearing "Starboard!!" reverberated across the lake), the results were tight.

The season started out with a successful Alumni Regatta, which arguably hosted the best sailing conditions of the season. Due to the excellent weather paired with inspiring Alumni sailing, we learned a lot (including "here's to brother…") and hope to see them again next year! In early October, Bates hosts its annual Protest Regatta – historically a protest of the Ivy League's monopoly over regattas. Sandwiches were tossed at the committee, Sarah Herde's (Bates Sailing Captain '21) pony tail was over the line, and the Tufts Jumbos brought home the thoughtfully carved out pumpkin trophy.

We now reach the week-end of October 13th-15th, and Bates Sailing is all over the United States and Canada. Three regattas occurred that week-end: SHU trophy at Fairfield in Connecticut, Intercollegiate Offshore Regatta at Larchmont, and, finally, the McGill Cup regatta in Montréal, Canada. A total of fifteen Bates sailors competed that week-end in wind conditions comparable to a Walingford's day at Taylor Pond all across the coast, but light wind is what we do best, and the senior sailors landed third place at the McGill Cup. In the last competitive weekend of the season, Bates Sailing qualified for the NE Fall Tournament and won the championship for, now, the second year in a row! Never had our sailors seen so much wind on the Charles. Such conditions caused a three-way boat capsize at the finish line during the last race.

The fall season always ends too quickly, but we concluded with a bang: TP Challenge successfully bringing out the weirdest and truest Saltcat spirit. Bates Sailing restlessly waits on land for the spring season, but, in the meantime, a long winter awaits and team bonding will flourish as we enter the very competitive Broomball season and apple-fork Thursday Dinner Race Series. As tradition follows, teamspirit will remain high, for our team energy is truly what defines Bates Sailing. While we may be aggressively protesting one another on the water, we always make room for warmth and cuddles onshore.

Thank you all for supporting Bates Sailing, see you all very soon!

Sarah Herde '21, Co-Captain

Claire Deplanck '20, Co-Captain

The Bates sailing club is one of 13 club sports recognized by the Department of Athletics. (Photo courtesy of Claire Deplanck '20)