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US Athletes ready for Miami

Published on January 19th, 2020

The US Sailing Team’s first major international event of the year approaches quickly with the start of the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami. On Monday, January 20, U.S. 470, Finn, Laser, Laser Radial, and RS:X athletes will have the chance to kick off the year on home waters.

For three of the seven classes, the event will serve as a piece of the U.S. Olympic trials. Sailors in the Men and Women’s 470, Men and Women’s RS:X, and Finn classes will face the second of three selection events that determine the Sailing athletes that will represent Team USA at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

After the 2019 World Championships, some athletes are left with particularly comfortable leads in the trials. U.S. Men’s 470 team, Stu McNay (Providence, R.I.) and Dave Hughes (Miami, Fla.), have a 33-point lead in the U.S. Men’s 470 trials. Similarly, Women’s RS:X sailor, Farrah Hall (Annapolis, Md.), leads her trials by 34-points.

On the other end of the spectrum, three U.S. Women’s 470 boats are within a point of one another. US Sailing Team athletes, Atlantic Brugman (Winthrop, Mass.) and Nora Brugman (Winthrop, Mass.), will be facing off with the U.S. team, Nikole Barnes (Miami, Fla.) and Lara Dallman-Weiss (Shoreview, Minn.), and the young U.S. duo, Carmen Cowles (Larchmont, N.Y.) and Emma Cowles (Larchmont, N.Y.).

US Sailing’s Olympic Head Coach, Luther Carpenter (Cypress, Texas), is looking forward to watching these sailors prepare for an important leg of the trials. “We’ve had two regattas here in the last month, and it’s been good practice for the coaches and sailors,” he said. “It’s always great to see how we perform when we have to bring our best. It’s one of the best learning tools for all of us.”

In addition to proceeding with the U.S. Olympic athlete trials, the American 470 Women will secure U.S. representation at the Tokyo 2020 Games. As there are more countries competing in Olympic classes than there are spots at the Games, countries have to qualify for representation. This event serves as the North American country qualifier. As the U.S. is the only North American country registered to compete in the Women’s 470 class, the country has all but officially earned the berth.

In both the Finn and Men’s RS:X trials, eight points separate the top two U.S. athletes. Pedro Pascual (West Palm Beach, Fla.) leads over Geronimo Nores (Miami Beach, Fla.) in the Men’s RS:X, while Luke Muller (Fort Pierce, Fla.) is ahead of Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif.), in the Finn.

Thanks to relatively small fleets at this event, it’s unlikely either point-spread will be significantly extended or shrunk in Miami. Rather than focusing on the trials, Carpenter has been working with Muller and Paine to focus on making as many improvements as possible.

“I don’t want them to be completely focused on each other, I want them to be focused on the improvements we have to make,” said Carpenter. Keeping a bigger picture in mind, he continued, “If we don’t improve a lot in the trials process, it makes the final goal harder to reach.”

Erika Reineke will also be representing the US Sailing Team in the Women’s Laser Radial Fleet. Though the event is not an element in her Olympic trials, Reineke is looking forward to competing on home waters leaving her best on the racecourse.

Racing will begin on Monday, January 20 at 11:00 a.m., local time (GMT -5). Thanks to solid wind forecasts, the Race Committee is optimistic that the regatta will feature the full schedule of races. All of the classes will have 10, with the exception of the RS:X classes, who have 15. On Saturday, January 25, the top ten boats in each fleet will compete in a final, additional Medal Race.

U.S. Athletes competing at the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami.
Stu McNay & Dave Hughes – 470 Men
Lachlain McGranahan & Declan McGranahan – 470 Men
Atlantic Brugman & Nora Brugman – 470 Women
Carmen Cowles & Emma Cowles – 470 Women
Nikole Barnes & Lara Dallman-Weiss – 470 Women
Luke Muller – Finn
Caleb Paine – Finn
Eric Anderson – Finn
Charles Heimler – Finn
Stephen Smeulders – Finn
Pedro Pascual – RS:X Men
Geronimo Nores – RS:X Men
Alexander Temko – RS:X Men
Ben Barger – RS:X Men
Farrah Hall – RS:X Women
Carolina Mendelblatt – RS:X Women
Erika Reineke – Laser Radial
Kaitlyn Hamilton – Laser Radial
Kelly McMurray – Laser Radial
Sarah Young – Laser Radial
Asher Zitter – Laser
Caleb Yaslov – Laser
Christian Ehrnrooth – Laser
Daniel Escudero – Laser
James Golden – Laser
Lucas Sawin – Laser
Malcolm Lamphere – Laser
Marcus Huttunen – Laser
Nick Sessions – Laser
Paul Didham – Laser
Steven Schwartz – Laser

Racing will commence at 11:00 local time on January 20 and run through to January 25 where seven Medal Races will decide the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami Champions.

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The World Cup Series is an annual circuit of Olympic sailing for elite and professional sailors, and a key touchpoint for fans and media to connect to the sport of sailing and develop support for athletes on their road to Tokyo 2020 Olympics and beyond. Over 2,000 of the world’s leading sailors, representing 75 nations, have competed in the World Cup Series since its inception in 2008.

2019-20 Hempel World Cup Series
Aug 27-Sep 1, 2019 – Enoshima, Japan
January 20-25, 2020 – Miami, USA
April 14-19, 2020 – Genoa, Italy
June 16-21, 2020 – Enoshima, Japan

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