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About the Championship
- The U.S. Junior Women’s Championships Committee annually hosts two events: a Singlehanded and a Doublehanded championship. Both championships are open events.
- Participants must be young women aged 13-18, members of US Sailing, and U.S. citizens.
- Each championship combines two clinic days with three racing days.
- The US Sailing Junior National Coach and staff are hired for the entire event to provide equal guidance to all competitors. No private coaching is allowed.
- Financial Support Provided by the C. Thomas Clagett Trust
- The first event was the Singlehanded sailed in Laser Radials which was started by Tom Clagett in 1980 at the Ida Lewis Yacht Club, Newport, RI and sailed for a trophy named in memory of Tom’s wife, Nancy, who died in April, 1977. In 1985, USYRU (now US Sailing) agreed to support the event on a trial basis. In 1986, it became the U.S. Junior Women’s Singlehanded Championship for the Nancy Leiter Clagett Memorial Trophy. The U.S. Junior Women’s Doublehanded Championship for the Ida Lewis Trophy championship was started in 1995 when it became apparent that a second championship in a doublehanded boat was needed to complement the singlehanded event. It became a US Sailing national championship in 1996.
- Sailors are required to join the International Laser Class Association – North American Region in order to compete in the U.S. Junior Women’s Singlehanded Championship
- A separate sportsmanship prize was later added to both championships in 2001, following Tom’s death in June of that year and a family logo was created for the championships incorporating Tom’s and Nancy’s private yacht signals. Nancy’s signal was a green ladder on a yellow rectangle since “Leiter” is German for ladder. Tom and Nancy’s first boat was named “The Barefoot Girl” after Nancy’s preference not to wear shoes. Tom’s private signal became two white bare feet on a blue triangle. The Singlehanded class flag is Nancy’s signal flag, and the Doublehanded class flag is a representation of the Ida Lewis lighthouse.
Participants will be expected to be able to manage a boat in up to 20 knots of breeze.