FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 31, 2016
Palma de Mallorca, Spain – Only one day of full-fleet racing remains at the Trofeo Princesa Sofia Iberostar in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, and the U.S. Olympic Sailing Team selection series for the Men’s Laser, Men’s RS:X and Women’s RS:X are rapidly coming to a close. With only medal races scheduled for Saturday, it is possible that all three USA selection battles could end on Friday. Heading into this event, eight of the fifteen available Olympic-class roster spots for Team USA had been filled. The results of the Trofeo Princesa Sofia will bring that number up to eleven.
In the Men’s Laser, the US Sailing Team Sperry’s Charlie Buckingham (Newport Beach, Calif.) is pacing the American contingent in Palma, and continues to defend his lead in the Rio 2016 selection series. The North American Champion is currently in 7th overall after an up-and-down Day Four. “In the first race today, I didn’t get off the line well and as the conditions got fluky up the first beat, I opted to stay close to my nearest trials competitor and cover him.” Buckingham went on to score mid-fleet in the first race, but recovered to submit a strong second effort. “The wind increased and steadied for the second race, and I got off the line better. I sailed pretty well and finished 8th.”
U.S. Pacific Coast Champion Erik Bowers (Excelsior, Minn.), the second-place American in the selection series so far, stands in 25th overall.
Pictured Above: Charlie Buckingham, Laser, US Sailing Team Sperry.
Pictured: Marion Lepert, Women’s RS:X, US Sailing Team Sperry
In the Women’s RS:X, Marion Lepert (Belmont, Calif.) leads London 2012 Olympian Farrah Hall (Annapolis, Md.) overall. The Stanford University student will be fighting for a spot in Saturday’s medal race, as she currently stands in 9th overall. The battle for Olympic selection among the two US Sailing Team Sperry athletes was quite close heading in to Palma, but so far this week, it has been Lepert who has seized the initiative. “I stayed focused on having good board speed and sailing conservatively to assure my lead,” said Lepert. Hall will need to close within two places overall in order to win selection to her second career Olympic Games.
Pictured: Pedro Pascual (West Palm Beach, Fla., left), Men’s RS:X, US Sailing Team Sperry. Photo: Jesus Renedo/Sailing Energy.
In the Men’s RS:X, Pedro Pascual (West Palm Beach, Fla.) leads the selection series and all Americans overall, though fellow Floridian Raul Lopez (Miami, Fla.) is tied with him on points. Lopez will need to beat Pascual by 10 places overall to win selection, by virtue of their respective results at Sailing World Cup Miami in January, the first selection event. Pascual noted that the heavy breeze and waves on Day 4 presented a significant challenge. “This year I have been training in all conditions, but most regattas have been light wind. Gaining experience racing in strong wind is essential, and this regatta has been tougher than any other so far.”
Racing will continue at the Trofeo Princesa Sofia Iberostar on Friday, April 1 (Day 5). The United States has qualified as a country in all ten Olympic classes and all three Paralympic classes, and will field a full team in Rio 2016. All athletes named to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team are subject to approval by the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC).
USA Results: Trofeo Princesa Sofia Iberostar
- Laser: (Olympic Selection Event)
- 7th overall, Charlie Buckingham (Newport Beach, Calif.)
- 25th overall, Erik Bowers (Excelsior, Minn.)
- 27th overall, Chris Barnard (Newport Beach, Calif.)
- Note: Buckingham currently leads the Laser U.S. Olympic Team Selection Series
- Women’s RS:X: (Olympic Selection Event)
- 9th overall, Marion Lepert (Belmont, Calif.)
- 25th overall, Farrah Hall (Annapolis, Md.)
- 57th overall, Kathleen Tocke (Miami, Fla.)
- Note: Lepert currently leads the RS:X U.S. Olympic Team Selection Series
- Men’s RS:X: (Olympic Selection Event)
- 37th overall, Pedro Pascual(West Palm Beach, Fla.)
- 38th overall, Raul Lopez (Miami, Fla.)
- 58th overall, Carson Crain (Houston, Texas)
- Note: Pascual currently leads the RS:X U.S. Olympic Team Selection Series
- 39th overall, Thomas Barrows (St. Thomas, U.S.V.I.) and Joe Morris (Annapolis, Md.)*
- 42nd overall, Judge Ryan (San Diego, Calif.) and Hans Henken (Coronado, Calif.)
- 8th overall, Paris Henken (Coronado, Calif.) and Helena Scutt (Kirkland, Wash.)*
- Nacra 17:
- 14th overall, Bora Gulari (Detroit, Mich.) and Louisa Chafee (Warwick, R.I.)*
- 15th overall, Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif.)*
- Men’s 470:
- 4th overall, Stu McNay (Providence, R.I.) and Dave Hughes (Miami, Fla.)
- Women’s 470:
- 9th overall, Annie Haeger (East Troy, Wisc.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.)
- 28th overall, Sydney Bolger (Long Beach, Calif.) and Carly Shevitz (Santa Barbara, Calif.)
- Note: Both USA Women’s 470 teams did not compete on Thursday
- 6th overall, Dee Smith (Annapolis, Md.)
*U.S. Olympic Sailing Team Member
Note: The final Rio 2016 selection event for the Men’s and Women’s 470 classes will be the 470 Europeans (April 7-12).
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 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 sponsors 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
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 www.ussailing.org
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Press Contact: Will Ricketson, Olympic Communications Manager, US Sailing. firstname.lastname@example.org, +1 (978) 697-2384.