Harken Derm

14th Clagett coming to Narragansett Bay

Published on June 17th, 2016

Newport, RI (June 17, 2016) – Narragansett Bay will soon play host to the sailors of the 14th C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Clinic and Regatta on June 23-26. Sailors from Canada, the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico along with US sailors from Florida, Rhode Island, New Jersey and Connecticut will be taking part.

Sailors will be utilizing two of the three classes that will be sailing in Rio at the Paralympics in September. The single handed 2.4mR class and the three person Sonar class will have teams taking part in this year.

Principal Race Officer (PRO) Tom Duggan (East Sandwich, MA) will be leading the race management team this year and Clagett head coach Betsy Alison (Newport, RI) will be heading up the coaching team. Both Duggan and Alison will be heading to Rio in September for the Paralympics; Duggan as the PRO for Paralympic sailing and Alison as the Head Coach for the US Sailing Paralympic team.

Members of the US and Canadian Paralympic sailing teams, who are traveling to Rio in September, are all Clagett alumni. Six out of the 15 Sonar teams competing in Rio in September’s Paralympic Games have previously been Clagett competitors.

2016 Clagett entries will see the return of familiar faces from previous years including the Sonar team from the US Virgin Islands. Skippered by Bill Canfield (Newport, RI), the team of Jim Kerr (St. Thomas, US VI) and Bob Blackwell ( St. Thomas, US VI)have been at the 2015 and 2014 Clagett clinic and regatta using the time at the event in preparation for the Rio Paralympics.

“I’m very happy to be doing my first Clagett but my fellow team members from the Virgin Islands team has been involved for three years. Like all events in Newport, we will be rewarded with great sailing conditions and excellent hospitality. The Clagett offers a wonderful mix of friendship and competition among all the competitors and volunteers”, commented Bill Canfield (St. Thomas, US VI).

Returning in 2016 will be sailors from the Warrior Sailing Program who first sailed at The Clagett in 2015. “Warrior Sailing is looking forward to another year participating in the Clagett regatta. We will be sending one team of Warriors to compete this year. Our programs competitive team members have been training and competing this year and are looking forward to the challenge that lays ahead in Newport next week”, commented Ben Poucher (Tavernier, FL) Director of the Warrior Sailing Program.

“We are looking forward to another fantastic event this year, at the 14th C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Memorial Clinic and Regatta. For The Clagett to be able to provide adaptive sailors the best available coaching, race management and location to assist them to optimize their potential, is the mission of The Clagett. We see the return of many familiar faces this year and we also are very proud of the fact that both the US and Canadian Paralympic sailing teams are previous Clagett sailors, many of whom have won the Clagett Trophy and their class at The Clagett”, commented Clagett co-founder and President, Judy McLennan.

The 2016 Clagett will be held at Sail Newport, located in Fort Adams State Park, Newport RI, June 23-26.

Event details:www.clagettregatta.org

C. Thomas Clagett Jr. Memorial Regatta. Fort Adams, Newport, RI

About the C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Memorial Clinic and Regatta: Founded in 2003, the C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. Memorial Clinic and Regatta honors the late Tom Clagett (1916-2001), a U.S. Navy World War II veteran who learned to sail on Chesapeake Bay. As a youngster he suffered temporary paralysis as the result of a bout of meningitis; an experience that left him with a deep respect for the accomplishments of people with disabilities. The Clagett’s stated mission is “to assist sailors in realizing their potential on the water by providing them both the knowledge and tools to improve their skills and the opportunity to use these skills in competition”. Tom Clagett’s motto was “Reach for Success”, which resonates with every Clagett participant. The event includes all three boats that have been chosen as the equipment of the Paralympic classes: the three-person Sonar, the two-person SKUD-18 and the singlehanded 2.4 Metre. Clagett competitors have seen medal success at the 2008 and 2012 Paralympic Games. Competitors often comment that, The Clagett, has improved their quality of life as they apply what is achieved on the water to everyday situations.

Report by Sam Crichton.

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