Prieto Wins the Laser South Regatta
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Senior Gary Prieto won the Laser South Regatta as the Navy intercollegiate sailing team kicked off the fall season this past weekend with three collegiate regattas and one other event.
Two of the regattas were at home: the Laser South and Radial Open. Both regattas were sailed on the same course and served as initial qualifiers for the conference singlehanded championships. Four men from Navy raced in the 18-boat Laser South. Racing was held in the Chesapeake Bay just beyond Greenbury Point on a gorgeous weekend in Annapolis. The wind came out of the NNE at 5-15 knots the whole weekend. Puffy, shifty conditions made the sailing a real challenge and the competitors really had to stay sharp to avoid deep finishes.
Prieto, Navy's team captain, set the tone early with a win in race 1 and kept pushing throughout the weekend to take the overall win and advance to the Carl Van Duyne MAISA Men's Singlehanded Championship at USMMA on October 7-8.
Navy's other three sailors had a harder time staying consistent and will have to wait for the MAISA Laser Elimination in a few weeks to earn a spot in the Van Duyne. Max Guerriero finished ninth, Connor Bayless came in 10th and Tyler Fleig was 14th.
The Radial Open featured the same tricky conditions and the two Navy women sailing had their ups and downs as well. Jessica McJones finished seventh and Brittney Slook came in 10th, good enough for both to advance to the Faye Bennet MAISA Women's Singehanded Championship at Navy on September 23-24. Both sailors showed some real strength and should be in good form for the Faye Bennet, where the top-five will advance to the Nationals.
The Riley Cup was hosted by Old Dominion University and was Navy's first doublehanded regatta of the year. The event saw some nice, windy conditions and great weather to shake off the rust from the summer. Navy finished sixth overall in the 18 team event. Max Brill and Kent Mathes finished fourth in A division while Sean Linden and Bartholomew Winn were ninth in B.
Navy's sailors who are preparing for the MAISA Match Racing Championship took an opportunity this weekend to expand their keelboat racing experience by competing in the J22 East Coast Championship hosted by Eastport Yacht Club. Many of the top J22 sailors in the region were in attendance and the racing was very competitive. Navy's team on Jimmy Madigan, Hamrick Morgan and Nicholas Gartner finished eighth overall in the 14-boat fleet.