Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games (Sailing): Three More Race Wins for USA on Day Two


Pictured: Hobie 16 leaders  Mark Modderman (Long Branch, N.J.) and Grace Modderman (Rumson, N.J.).


Monday, July 13, 2015

Toronto, Canada – The US Pan American Sailing Team won three more races on Day Two of Toronto 2015, and continues to fight for podium spots in what so far has been a light-air affair. Team USA leads in the Lightning and Hobie 16 classes, and is in podium position in the Laser, 49erFX and Sunfish.

In the Men’s Laser, Charlie Buckingham (Newport Beach, Calif.) was given a black flag penalty on Sunday’s final start, in a race that was eventually abandoned. Since black flag disqualifications carry over into the next completed race, regardless of if the race where the penalty was accrued is abandoned, Buckingham had to sit out Monday’s first race. However, he bounced back with a 2nd in race two. “I wish we did more races today, since I feel like I’m going well,” said Buckingham, who is being coached by Olympic and Pan American Champion Mark Reynolds (San Diego, Calif.). “I really like working with Mark. He’s done it all before. He is very experienced and always calm. Mark has been reinforcing that I need to take things one race at a time. It sounds simple, but it’s pretty easy to forget under pressure.” Buckingham is now in 2nd overall, and tied on points with regatta leader and Toronto local Lee Parkhill of Canada.

Pictured: Charlie Buckingham, Laser class.

In the Hobie 16, the family team of Mark Modderman (Long Branch, N.J.) and Grace Modderman (Rumson, N.J.) continue to lead the multihull fleet. “We had an up and down day, and won the second race,” said Mark Modderman, the skipper. “The first race was unfortunate, because it started off well, but we got stuck on the wrong side on the first beat. In the second race we had better speed than our nearest competitor, and took the lead on the last upwind leg. Tomorrow, we need to keep it going. It might be a tough day, as we have to sail on the inner harbor course, which is unpredictable.”

The challenges of that inner harbor course were readily apparent to the Lightning and Snipe fleets, which raced on it for the first time. The American Lightning team won their second race of the regatta, but also endured a finish near the back of the pack. Nevertheless, the team of Justin Coplan (Nyack, N.Y.), Danielle Prior (Mechanicsburg, Penn.) and Caroline Patten (Barnegat Light, N.J.) still leads the fleet overall.

In the Snipe, 2011 Pan Am Games medalists Augie Diaz (Miami, Fla.) and Kathleen Tocke (Buffalo, N.Y.) were mid-fleet in race one, and won the second race. “Our speed is good, but we were racing on the inner harbor course and were too focused on the compass,” said Tocke. “You can’t look for patterns on that course, or look at what other boats are doing. You just need to find the pressure and sail your own race. We did a better job of that on the second race.”


Pictured: Augie Diaz (Miami, Fla.) and Kathleen Tocke (Buffalo, N.Y.), Snipe class.

In the Laser Radial, two-time Pan Am Games medalist Paige Railey (Clearwater, Fla.) continued to finish near the top of the fleet on Day Two. “I got two more solid results today, and am trying to keep a good average,” said Railey. “The fleet is tight, and there are lots of light air specialists here. I’m enjoying racing against them, because it really sharpens your skills in these conditions.” After Day Two, Railey is in a three-way tie for 2nd place overall.

In the 49er FX, Paris Henken (Coronado, Calif.) and Helena Scutt (Kirkland, Wash.) started the day off by being called over the starting line early, but recovered to race in the top three for most of the day. “We are staying consistent, and are going fast,” said Henken. “The trickiest part about this regatta so far is managing such a small fleet. You really need to stay close to everyone, and position yourself well.” The American skiff team now sits in 3rd overall.


Pictured: Conner Blouin (Tampa, Fla.), Sunfish class.

In the Sunfish, Conner Blouin (Tampa, Fla.) jumped up the standings with a pair of 2nd place finishes on Day Two. After finishing 8th is yesterday’s lone and very light air contest, Blouin said he was eager to get back on the horse today. He now sits in 3rd overall (tied for 2nd).

Marion Lepert (Belmont, Calif.) arrived in Toronto after claiming second place in the Under-21 division at the RS:X European Championships, and has been competitive so far despite being younger than some of her competitors. “I would say it’s going well,” said Lepert, who is currently a student at Stanford University. “It’s close racing in light air, and [sail] pumping technique is making a big difference in speed throughout the fleet. I definitely feel like I’m as fast as anyone.” Lepert also noted that endurance will be key to success at this event. “RS:X racing is very physical, and this week it will come down to who can last the longest.”

Racing continues on Tuesday, July 14 (Day Three) at the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games. Two races are scheduled to be held each day in the Laser, Laser Radial, Sunfish, Snipe, Lightning and Hobie 16 classes. Three races per day will be held in RS:X Men, RS:X Women and 49erFX classes. The first races of the day are scheduled to start at 11:30AM local time. A medal race will be held at the end of the regatta for each class, which will count for double points.


Pictured: Head Coach Luther Carpenter (La Porte, Texas) with RS:X athletes Marion Lepert (Belmont, Calif.) and Carson Crain (Houston, Texas) on Day Two.

Results: U.S. Pan American Sailing Team

Full results (pending protests)

Laser Men: 

  • 2nd overall (tied for 1st), Charlie Buckingham (Newport Beach, Calif.)

Hobie 16: 

  • 1st overall, Mark Modderman (Long Branch, N.J.) and Grace Modderman (Rumson, N.J.)


  • 1st overall, Justin Coplan (Nyack, N.Y.), Danielle Prior (Mechanicsburg, Penn.) and Caroline Patten (Barnegat Light, N.J.)

49er FX: 

  • 3rd overall, Paris Henken (Coronado, Calif.) and Helena Scutt (Kirkland, Wash.)

Laser Radial Women: 

  • 4th overall (tied for 2nd), Paige Railey (Clearwater, Fla.)

RS:X Women: 

  • 4th overall, Marion Lepert (Belmont, Calif.)

RS:X Men: 

  • 6th overall (tied for 5th), Carson Crain (Houston, Texas)


  • 4th overall, Augie Diaz (Miami, Fla.) and Kathleen Tocke (Buffalo, N.Y.)


  • 3rd overall (tied for 2nd), Conner Blouin (Tampa, Fla.)

Athletes must be American citizens to qualify for the US Pan American Sailing Team. Since sailing was included in the Pan American Games in 1955, the United States has won 78 medals in sailing: 33 gold, 27 silver and 18 bronze.

Event Reports:


  • Saturday, July 11: Practices Races
  • July 12-17: Qualifying Races
  • July 18-19: Medal Races
  • July 20: Reserve Day

ESPN Broadcast:

ESPN and ESPN Deportes will offer an Olympic-style TV production and complete multi-platform coverage of the 2015 Pan American Games from Toronto, starting Friday, July 10 at 7:30 p.m. ET with the Opening Ceremony live on ESPN and ESPN Deportes, and with replays available on ESPN3.

ESPN3 will carry 580 hours of Pan American Games programming, with live access to almost every competition in more than 15 different sports. While sailing will not be covered live, regatta updates will appear in event highlight reels during the broadcast.

See Also: More than Ten Ways to Follow the Pan American Games Toronto 2015 on ESPN and ESPN Deportes Platforms

Pan Am Games Media Guide:

Team USA (All Sports) Microsite:
US Pan American Sailing Team Daily Updates:
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US Pan American Sailing Team Media Hub:
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About the Pan American Games

Held every four years in the year before the Olympic Games, the Pan American Games are the third largest multi-sport event after the Olympic Games. The history of the Pan American Games dates back to 1951 when the Games were first hosted by Buenos Aires, Argentina. The 2015 Pan American Games mark the 17th celebration of the Pan American Sports Organization event. The U.S. has hosted the event twice, in Indianapolis in 1987 and Chicago in 1959.

About US Sailing

The United States Sailing Association (US Sailing), the national governing body for sailing, provides leadership, integrity, and growth for the sport in the United States. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, US Sailing is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization. US Sailing offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country, including National Championships and the US Sailing Team Sperry. For more information, please visit

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Press Contact: Will Ricketson, Olympic Communications Manager, US Sailing., +1 (978) 697-2384.