Just college sailors going sailing

Published on September 21st, 2022

While college dinghy sailing in the USA remains some of the best sailing that can occur for that age range, it has been impacted by the madness affecting all sport.

The singular focus on age-based dinghy events during the teen years, to the exclusion of everything else, has led to limited skills and burnout. Then, student sailors choosing schools based on team programs and not educational interests is a bit mad too, particularly when massive tuition fees are not offset with scholarships.

Parents are as much the problem, a reality well-revealed in the massive college admissions bribery scandal of 2019. And the focus on collegiate training comes at the exclusion of extra-curricular activities. Winning is everything.

But hope is in the handful of college keelboat events that provide an opportunity for students that may not have embraced the High School Sailing scheme to get out of the library and represent their schools on the playing field. Just sailors going sailing.

On September 23-25 is the 2022 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Offshore Regatta at the Chicago Columbia Yacht Club in Chicago, IL. With support from the Storm Trysail Club, GLIOR is an annual fall regatta that provides an opportunity for collegiate sailors to experience offshore keel-boat racing.

As in the past, Chicago T10 & Chicago J105 fleet members provide the sailboats and are on-board during racing as a safety precaution; the collegiate sailors drive, crew the boat and manage strategy and tactics; Chicago-area yacht clubs provide facilities and the fleets provide financial support, participant gifts and awards.

Teams arrive on Friday and have the opportunity to practice on their assigned boats that afternoon. The regatta consists of windward/leeward buoy races on Lake Michigan with as many as possible all day Saturday and on Sunday morning. Award ceremonies are Sunday during lunch and teams have the afternoon for travel back to campus.

The 2022 entry list has the following: University of South Carolina, University of Rhode Island, United States Naval Academy, Dalhousie University, University of California San Diego, Michigan Technological University, Ohio State University, Indiana University, Purdue University, Cleveland State University, University of Illinois, University of Michigan, University of Toledo, The All Womens Team: GVSU, Hope and St Mary’s, University of Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin Women’s, Miami University, University of Notre Dame, Marquette University, Queens University (of Canada), and Michigan State.

Details: https://stormtrysail.org/races/glior/

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