Against all odds

Georgetown University snatched the ICSA National Championships away from Boston in a thrilling final day

Thursday June 5th 2008, Author: Jan Harley, Location: United Kingdom
Evidently the idea of finishing runner-up to Boston College for the second time in less than a week did not sit well with the Georgetown University sailing team. Last Sunday, Boston College won the ICSA/APS Team Race Championship with a final score of 11 to three, as Georgetown finished second with a nine to five win-loss record.

In pouring rain and with the most coveted title in college sailing – the ICSA/Gill National Championship – within reach, Georgetown turned a 17-point deficit at the start of today’s final six races for both A and B Divisions, into first a ten point and then a 29 point lead heading into the final set of races for the day.

The Hoyas senior skipper, Chris Behm, alternating crew between junior Carly Chamberlain and sophomore Marco Teixidor, had posted finishes of 4-12-8-1-2-2 to finish fourth overall in A Division. It was their finish in the last race that mathematically secured Georgetown the championship with 233 points – to BC’s then 266 points – prior to B Division sailing its final race. Freshman skipper Charlie Buckingham and sophomore crew Alexandra Taylor finished 8-1-15-8 before their fifth-place finish in race 17B moved them into the top spot in B Division. Another fifth-place finish in the last race (18B) merely sealed the deal to earn Georgetown it’s first-ever win of the ICSA/Gill National Championship.

“Today we were looking to break in after besting BC two out of three times during the team racing championship (which concluded this past Sunday),” said Michael Callahan, Head Coach for Georgetown University which has twice won the ICSA Team Race Championship (2001 and 2006). “There was a big difference today in the wind direction and the type of sailing. Earlier in the series straight-line boat speed was the key. Today the shifty winds were just like the Potomac River where our regular practices take place.” Reflecting on the win, Callahan recalled having been second in both 2006 and 2004 when the Hoyas ultimately lost the ICSA/Gill National title by, respectively, six points to College of Charleston and 29 points to the University of Hawaii. “We are very excited to win this championship.”

For a while it looked as though St. Mary’s College would have the bridesmaid honors. But a protest against the Seahawks filed by the College of Charleston over a leeward mark rounding incident resulted in St. Mary’s disqualification and dropped them down to third place. Boston College took second overall with 269 points to St. Mary’s 276. Roger Williams University finished fourth with 289 points, followed by Connecticut College with 307.

Results, here .

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