Practice makes perfect, the New College Sailing Team is discovering, taking second place in a regatta Oct. 20-21 near Orlando.
New College sent two two-person teams to compete in a developmental regatta on Lake Virginia, on the campus of Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida. The event was sponsored by Rollins and the South Atlantic conference of the Intercollegiate Sailing Association.
A developmental regatta is a part of a conferencewide initiative to provide more racing and learning opportunities for developing teams. “It’s for newer sailors, to build up their skills,” said New College team captain Renbourn Chock. “It was really cool,” said Daria Paulis, who sailed with Chock during the competition. “This was my second regatta ever; I learned a lot of stuff.”
In a typical regatta, sailors compete in multiple races where boats must sail upwind, navigate around a point and return downwind to the finish line. Scores are then averaged to determine overall winners.
While Choch and Paulis were in one boat, Clinton Overton skippered the second boat with the team’s co-captain, Annika Kufrovich, as crew. New College Fitness Center instructor Dave Pedersen is the team’s coach.
With six races in each division, the USF Bulls secured a regatta victory followed by New College, with the Rollins Tars in third and Florida Institute of Technology team taking fourth place.
Chock, a fourth-year student who has been leading the team for the last three years, says the team is in rebuilding mode after losing several team members to graduation. This second-place showing is a marked improvement, he said. “We raced at Eckerd College two weeks ago and came in last. It’s starting to come together; we’re getting the spirit back.”
Paulis agrees. “We learned a lot at Eckerd,” she observed. Communications between crewmembers has improved the more they race, she said. “We also figured out who our toughest competition was and watched how they were doing things.”
Chock says the team will compete in more regattas in the coming months and is planning a Learn to Sail Day at New College in the near future.