Applications are now being accepted for the U.S. Naval Academy Big Boat Racing Clinic, a unique racing clinic designed for junior sailors focused on developing leadership and teamwork skills aboard large offshore race boats.
Coached by the Academy's Varsity Offshore Sailing Team Staff and expert guests, this weeklong clinic will significantly enhance any young sailor's big boat racing skill and experience in all positions onboard. The clinic, scheduled for Aug. 2 to 6 in Annapolis, MD, will be taught aboard the academy's fleet of new 44' MK2 sloops and donated boats. Hosted out of the Robert Crown Sailing Center at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, the clinic starts on Sunday, Aug. 2 and continues until late Thursday, Aug. 6. Included in the $995 is housing in Bancroft Hall, 3 meals each day, USNA Crew Handbook, a T-shirt and onboard drinking water. Skills to be covered include: onboard communication, tacking, spinnaker jibing, various spinnaker sets and takedowns, sail trim (main, jib and spinnaker), winch operation (self tailing, grinding, resolving overrides, etc.), foredeck operations, changing sails (headsails and spinnakers), starting maneuvers, windward/leeward racing strategy and tactics, and tactical application of the Racing Rules of Sailing. Open to boys and girls age 13-18, the applicants should have solid fundamental sailing skills (small boat experience only is OK). The clinic is limited to 24 participants. Applications are being accepted online at: http://www.usna.edu/sailingteam/forms/Big_Boat_Clinic.htm. For information on the daily itinerary, go to www.usna.edu/SailingTeam.
Brad Read, executive director of Sail Newport, Rhode Island's Public Sailing Center, is busy attracting new sailors to our sport. Using the Volvo Ocean Race as enticement, Read is reaching into school classrooms to present sailing as a tool for learning. He is linking classrooms from all over the country to the Volvo Ocean Race using a web-based curriculum designed by St. Michael's Country Day School, Michael Boardman Web Design and Sail Newport. It is a way for teachers to create classroom content which links in with the powerful story of a sailboat race around the globe. The curriculum includes language arts, mathematics, geography, ocean science, and basic navigation. Teachers and students help populate the site, but Read and his team made sure that for the most part it is self-maintaining. We utilize the National Geographic website, the Volvo Ocean Race site as well as "onsite reporters" who are tied in with the race. Using RRS feeds for videos, podcasts, and daily news reports from the race website keeps the Global Learning site fresh.
The young learners also have the chance to be in communication with some of the crew of the Volvo Ocean Race. What better way to bring this event (and sailing) to a truly personal level. When the Il Mostro was in a bit of trouble with their structural problems, Read sent out an email to all the schools asking for "get well notes" for the "Sick Kitty." According to Read, "The emails back were priceless. I forwarded them off to Kenny and the boys and they were very grateful for the fan mail. Also, a group of kids made some nice Christmas cards for the teams. My favorite one was a group of kids that wrote a get-well note asking if there were any veterinarians in the Indian Ocean! Also, one that was so detailed in what the weather was going to be like near Madagascar that I couldn't send it in fear of getting the Il Mostro team in trouble for outside assistance!"
For anyone interested in setting up a similar program, Read suggests, "First, join in with our Global Learning site as the tools are there for you and it is free to any schools that are wishing to utilize them. Use what we have to create curriculums that fit in with your state and federal standards of learning as without that link, public school systems will just not buy into it." He continued, "Our biggest efforts were to make it free to any teacher and have the site be able to adapt to different races each year. Next year we may link the site to the Barcelona World Race, or a singlehanded effort of some kind that is taking place. This link of sailing, exploring and the classroom has the potential to introduce more children to the water and the sport than we can imagine." For more information on this exciting development: http://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/news/09/tt and http://globallearning-sailnewport.org.
Each year, the America's Cup Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of outstanding sailors and innovators by inducting them into the Hall of Fame at extraordinary ceremonies held in exciting venues around the world. These ceremonies are truly notable black-tie events, drawing the best and brightest of the sport as we honor individuals who have made outstanding contributions to yachting's most distinguished competition. The 2009 event will feature the induction of Australia II team member and IACC Rule co-author, John Longley AM of Australia; Golden Era sailmaker Thomas Ratsey of the UK; and noted Cup cinematographer John Biddle of the US. Honorary event co-chairs are Bruno Trouble, Gary Jobson and Sir James Hardy, and Halsey Herreshoff will serve as master of ceremonies. Sir Keith Mills, chairman of the British Cup challenger, Teamorigin, will provide the keynote speech. This year the induction ceremony will take place on Thursday, April 30 at New York YC in Manhattan.
The America's Cup Hall of Fame was founded in 1992 as an arm of the Herreshoff Marine Museum by Halsey Herreshoff, a four-time America's Cup winner and grandson of the legendary yacht designer Nathanael Herreshoff. Nearly 70 legends of the Cup have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, including the late Edward I. du Moulin (Knickerbocker YC, Storm Trysail Club, New York YC, and honorary member of both Manhasset Bay YC and Port Washington YC), who "was an important organizer of the America's Cup Hall of Fame and was the first chairman of the selection committee." Other inductees include, from the U.S.: Victor A. Romagna (Port Washington YC), Bus Mosbacher (grew up sailing out of Knickerbocker YC), Olin Stephens, Thomas Whidden, Gary Jobson, Buddy Melges, Malin Burnham, Arthur Knapp, Morris Rosenfeld, Stanley Rosenfeld, Ted Hood, Dennis Conner, Gertrude Vanderbilt, Nathanael Herreshoff. Inductees outside of the U.S. include Laurie Davidson, Bruno Trouble, Ben Lexcen, Alan Payne, Alan Bond, Baron Marcel Bich, Thomas Egerton, 2nd Earl of Wilton, Sir Peter Blake, and Russell Coutts. For a complete list, with interesting biographies, visit the beautiful newly designed Herreshoff Marine Museum website: www.herreshoff.org.