- Bronze medal at Sail Melbourne—First World Cup event of 2012
- Team holiday on Great Ocean Road, arrival to Perth
- Pre-Worlds training in Perth
- Reflections on our development as a team from Sail For Gold to now
- Ready to race at the Worlds—follow along at www.facebook.com/teamGOSAIL and regatta site www.perth2011.com
After months and months of dreaming about and working towards this event, we have finally arrived—TGS is here in Perth, ready to finish the job. We write today from a café along the cappuccino strip in Fremantle, the seaside town that is hosting the Worlds. It’s pouring rain and all fleets racing in the first half of the event are being held ashore to avoid the thunder and lightning—a first for hot, sunny Perth! We’ve been in Australia for nearly five weeks now, arriving to Melbourne November 1, and we’ll be here another two weeks to complete the event and consequently the US Olympic Team selections. A long trip for sure, pretty much as far away as we could be from friends and family, but we are glad for the time we’ve spent here, as it has given us the proper amount of time to acclimate and prepare for the main event. We’re chomping at the bit, ready to sail, but we must remain patient until the 470 Men finish their event—we begin racing after them, one week from today, December 12th.
Our Worlds preparations began in earnest in Melbourne, where we raced for the first time since our Europeans in Helsinki last July. We competed in Sail Melbourne, the first ISAF World Cup event for the 2012 season. After a fall’s worth of training with a private coach working within the USSTAG framework, we purposefully did the regatta without coaching support, wanting to focus on building our communication within the boat. Though the fleet was smaller than that of most World Cups, it was of the highest quality, with half the boats competing ranked top ten in the world as well as several gold medalists. Because there were so few boats, we were raced all together, men and women on the same line with the scores being separated out on land. This provided an excellent, if unforgiving, fleet, and a great segue back into racing after such a long break. Port Philip Bay dished out a range of conditions, with everything from glassed off no wind to AP over A go-home-racing-abandoned windy!
|Our first time in the ISAF World Cup leader pinnies as a team!|
|Bronze Medal at Sail Melbourne|
|TGS takes some time to see the sights|
We flew directly to Perth after our Great Ocean Road adventure, where we have set up camp for a month leading up to the Worlds. After unpacking the boats we went straight into a coaches regatta for five days of combined men’s and women’s racing, this time with a slightly larger and even more talented fleet. We used this event as an information-gathering opportunity, to learn about the venue and the breeze. We saw two days of the infamous ‘Doctor’, the local seabreeze Perth/Fremantle is so well-known for, but the rest of the event saw a variety of different breeze directions. All of these different conditions provided an excellent training ground for what we could have here, outside of the expected pumping seabreeze. Following an intense month of racing, we returned to more of a boat-handling, speed-tuning mode of training, which was a nice change of pace. We continued our pattern of training with the USSTAG men’s teams, this time with the addition of our own USSTAG coach, Zack Leonard, who we will work with through the event. We’re going wicked fast and our communication and teamwork is better than ever before—we feel more than ready to race.
|On-board camera, catching some of our training in Perth|
Amanda Clark and Sarah Lihan
|Enjoying the parade at the Opening Ceremonies at the Worlds|
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Team GO SAIL would like to thank the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics and all of the USSTAG sponsors: Title Sponsor AlphaGraphics, Gold level partners Rolex Watch USA and Atlantis WeatherGear, Silver partners Sperry Top-Sider LaserPerformance, Harken, Team McLube and Trinity Yachts, and Bronze partners New England Ropes, Group Experiential Learning, and Bow Down Training.