Charleston claims Kennedy Cup

Published on November 3rd, 2019

College of Charleston won the 2019 Kennedy Cup, considered the unofficial College Keelboat Nationals, topping eight other teams in Navy 44s on November 2-3 in Annapolis, MD. The Cougars finished the six-race series with a seven point lead over Coast Guard in second with Mass Maritime in third.

The winning team was Jordan Wiggins ‘20 (helm), Willy Comerford ‘21 (main trim), Sam Tobio ‘20 (primary trim), Chance Slack ‘23 (secondary trim), Emily Essi ‘21 (pit), Graham Post ‘21 (mast), Burke Anvari ‘21 (bow), and Emily Potter ‘22 (squirrel).

Event details:

Here’s the event report provided by US Naval Academy:

Saturday, November 2:
Two races were held for the Kennedy Cup in Annapolis today aboard the Naval Academy’s fleet of 44 sloops. While the wind forecast for the day was not promising, PRO Paul Clissold and his NASS RC crew clung to hope that the variable southerly would stabilize sufficiently to get a race or two in.

After an initial postponement, they started the first race only to abandon after a 60 degree left shift came in halfway up the first leg.

The fleet returned to the start area and waited as the new breeze tried to settle from the south at around 5 knots.

Once it became reasonable, the race was restarted with Charleston winning the pin and favored left side followed closely by URI. These two dusted the fleet finishing well ahead for the 1, 2. Cal Maritime took third but suffered a 4 point I flag penalty for improperly reporting their rules infraction.

For race 2, the current was ebbing upwind but the fleet got off the line clean. This time Mass Maritime jumped out front while Charleston rounded the first mark last. Mass continued to extend and ran away with the race while Charleston sailed magnificently to get back to second. Cal who were also deep early, also made a nice comeback to take third. The second race finished well after 5 PM so racing was done for the day.

Racing continues tomorrow with a forecast for better breeze.

Sunday’s racing will start an hour earlier than originally scheduled (0930 vice 1030) with the skipper’s briefing also moved up from 0900 to 0800. So much for fall back on the time change…

Sunday, November 3:
Today provided a picture perfect day for college big boat racing as the predicted WNW breeze filled in right on schedule. NASS RC PRO Paul Clissold elected to start the day an hour early in order to make up for being able to run only two races in yesterday’s light winds.

The wind started out in the high 200s favoring course left on most legs. Most teams managed to find their way there and cash in but it was quite difficult to do so with consistency. Coast Guard posted the best score line for the day with a 5,1,2,3 to move up to 2nd place while Mass and Cal Maritime stumbled at times and lost valuable points.

Navy finally found their stride posting a 3,1 to close out the regatta moving them from the cellar up to 6th, just 4 points off the podium.

The College of Charleston Cougars sailed incredibly strong with a worst score being a 6 which included a 2 point I flag penalty, to win the regatta by 7 points clear of second place Coast Guard. Mass Maritime beat Cal on a tie break for third.

Congratulations to Charleston who earned the right to represent the USA in next year’s Student Yachting World Cup!

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