Olympic Test Event 2015 (Sailing): USA 2nd Overall In Three Classes

Pictured: Stu McNay (Providence, R.I.) and Dave Hughes (Miami, Fla.), Men’s 470, US Sailing Team Sperry.


August 16, 2015

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – The second day of competition at the Aquece Rio International Sailing Regatta 2015 (Olympic Test Event) saw the debut races of six more classes, and US Sailing Team Sperry athletes now sit in second place overall in the Laser Radial, Men’s 470 and Women’s 470 fleets.

US Sailing Team Sperry Women’s 470 athletes and 2015 European Championships bronze medalists Annie Haeger (East Troy, Wisc.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.) opened their series with an impressive 2,2 scoreline. “Our two races today were very similar from a tactical standpoint,” said Provancha. “We managed to pick the correct side of the course every time but one today, which definitely helped,” added Haeger. A moment of drama occurred on the final run of the second race, when the wind changed direction dramatically, threatening the 2nd place position the team had worked hard to attain. “It was difficult to see where the new breeze was coming from, and luckily the boats behind us didn’t get it first. Overall, we’re really excited about our performance today,” said Provancha. The American pair are tied on points with the Chinese team of Shasha Chen and Haiyan Gao for the overall lead.

Pictured: Annie Haeger (East Troy, Wisc.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.), Women’s 470.

In the Men’s 470, 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Weymouth and 470 European Champions Stu McNay (Providence, R.I.) and Dave Hughes (Miami, Fla.) recorded scores of 6,2 and sit just one point out of first place, trailing only the World Champion Australian team of Mat Belcher and Will Ryan. Despite the strong start, McNay noted there was still room for improvement. “There were plenty of opportunities in the decisions we made [to do better],” said McNay. “Tomorrow we’ll be looking to improve upon our process.” Hughes said that several weeks of high-intensity training on the open-ocean Olympic racecourses in Rio had paid dividends in the first two races, but that adaptability was still the best tool at their disposal. “It’s super challenging. The race course has a lot going on, and you really have to be ‘heads up’ to make the right decisions,” said Hughes. “The good news is that we were able to learn from the first race and take that into race two.”

In the Laser Radial, Paige Railey (Clearwater, Fla.) recieved a black flag penalty in the first race, which disqualifies a competitor for being over the starting line early. That race now becomes her discardable “drop” race for the series. However, the 2012 Olympian bounced back strongly in the second race, scoring a 2nd place finish. “I was pretty upset after getting the black flag,” said Railey. “But eventually I talked with Mark Littlejohn, my coach, and we refocused our attention to the next race. It’s important in that situation to focus on the current conditions, the ‘here and now,’ and what you can control. You have to keep moving forward, especially at a tactically challenging venue like Rio.”

Racing continues at the  Aquece Rio – International Sailing Regatta 2015 (Olympic Test Event) on Monday, August 17. The event will conclude with medal races for the top competitors in each fleet from August 20-22.

2015 Olympic Test Event, USA Results:

Full Results

Laser Radial (Women’s One-Person Dinghy):

  • 2nd overall, Paige Railey (Clearwater, Fla.)

Men’s 470 (Men’s Two-Person Dinghy):

  • 2nd overall, Stuart McNay (Providence, R.I.) and David Hughes (Miami, Fla.)

Women’s 470 (Women’s Two-Person Dinghy):

  • 2nd overall, Annie Haeger (East Troy, Wisc.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.)

Laser (Men’s One-Person Dinghy):

  • 12th overall, Charlie Buckingham (Newport Beach, Calif.)

Nacra 17 (Mixed Two-Person Multihull):

  • 14th overall, Sarah Newberry (Miami, Fla.) and Matthew Whitehead (Panama City, Fla.)

49erFX (Women’s Two-Person High Performance Skiff):

  • 15th overall, Paris Henken (Coronado, Calif.) and Helena Scutt (Kirkland, Wash.)

Finn (Men’s One-Person Heavyweight Dinghy):

  • 16th overall, Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif.)

49er (Men’s Two-Person High Performance Skiff):

  • 16th overall, Brad Funk (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and Trevor Burd (Marblehead, Mass.)

Women’s RS:X (Women’s Board):

  • 18th overall, Farrah Hall (Annapolis, Md.)

Men’s RS:X (Men’s Board):

  • 24th overall, Carson Crain (Houston, Texas)


The Medalist Newsletter: US Olympic and Paralympic Sailing News

Screenshot 2015-08-05 17.19.36

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About the US Sailing Team Sperry

The US Sailing Team Sperry is managed by the United States Sailing Association (US Sailing), the national governing body for the sport of sailing and sailboat racing. The top boats in each Olympic and Paralympic class are selected annually to be members of the US Sailing Team Sperry. US Sailing helps these elite athletes with with financial, logistical, coaching, technical, fitness, marketing and communications support. The title sponsor of the team is Sperry; other sponsors include Gold-Level partner Sunbrella and Silver-Level partners Harken, Team McLube and Groupe Beneteau. Yale Cordage is a team supplier. The US Sailing Center Miami is an Olympic training site. Oakcliff Sailing and Clearwater Community Sailing Center are US Sailing Team Sperry  Training Centers. Chubb Personal Insurance and the Gowrie Group sponsor US Sailing’s National Team Tour, a nationwide presentation program for US Sailing Team Sperry  athletes. For more information, please visit www.ussailing.org/olympics 

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Contact: Will Ricketson, Olympic Communications Manager, US Sailing. willricketson@ussailing.org, +1 (978) 697-2384.