FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jake Fish, US SAILING Communications Manager
HAMPTON, Va. (July 11, 2009) – Racing on the third and final day of the U.S. Junior Women’s Doublehanded Championship was cancelled today due to insufficient winds. However, the team of Chanel Miller (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) and Yuri Namikawa (Ranchos Palos Verdes, Calif.) was the clear cut winner through seven races at this year’s championship. Miller and Namikawa (Hull #13) claim bragging rights to the prestigious Ida Lewis Trophy.
Consistency was the key to success for the new champions. Their worst finish was fifth in race one on Thursday. They won two races, finished second once, and added three third places to round out the championship with 13 points. They won by a 10 point margin over Deirdre Lambert (Cumberland, Maine) and Tracy Doherty (Sea Cliff, N.Y.), who exploded into second place by winning the final three races of the day on Friday. However, a 13th place finish forced them to keep one of their ninth place finishes from Thursday. Thursday’s leaders, Georgie Ryan (San Diego, Calif.) and Haley Kirk (Long Beach, Calif.) dropped to third on Friday. They had finishes of sixth, 12th, second, and 10th. The 12th place finish was their worst score of the event. Ryan and Kirk finished the championship 12 points off the lead.
Miller and Namikawa have both sailed in the championship before as a helm; however, this was their first regatta together. They sailed like a veteran team with great chemistry. “We tried to play it safe on our starts due to the shifty conditions,” said Miller. “We raced conservatively and didn’t take any unnecessary risks.” Miller went on to mention the level of focus they had. “Yuri and I tried not to focus on any other specific teams. We just played the fleet,” she said. Namikawa explained, “We had really good communication on the boat throughout.”
The 37 teams, competing in Club 420s, were called in after attempting to start race 8 this afternoon when the wind failed to fill in. Today’s breeze stood less than five knots on the southern waters of Chesapeake Bay. The field of competitors range in age from 13 to 18 years old in this three-day open event sponsored by LaserPerformance and hosted by the Hampton Yacht Club.
Support for the U.S. Junior Women's Doublehanded Championship is made possible in part by funds provided by the late C. Thomas Clagett, Jr. to perpetuate his unwavering dedication to Junior Women's Sailing. His support is in memory of his late wife, Nancy Leiter Clagett, a world class sailor, and of Ida Lewis, the heroic daughter of a lighthouse keeper. This support is intended to encourage young American women to enhance their sailing ability, with emphasis on sportsmanship, by providing the opportunity to compete in national-level competition with guidance from high-level coaching. Tom Clagett's family continues to assist in fulfilling his vision.
For complete results, live Twitter updates, daily reports, and photos, please visit the event website at http://championships.ussailing.org/Youth/USJrWomensDoublehanded.htm.
Top Five Results from the U.S. Junior Women's Doublehanded Championship
1. Chanel Miller/Yuri Namikawa, Lauderdale Yacht Club/California YC, -3-1-1-2-3-3- ; 13
2. Deirdre Lambert/Tracy Doherty, LISOT, 9-9-2--1-1-1- ; 23
3. Georgie Ryan/Haley Kirk, San Diego Yacht Club, 1-1-5-6--2-10- ; 25
4. Sarah Williams/Jane Rew, Bay Head Yacht Club, 2-13-7-8--4-4- ; 38
5. Mallory Schluter/Marly Isler, San Diego Yacht Club, 11-2-14-4-4-8-- ; 43
About US SAILING
The United States Sailing Association (US SAILING), the national governing body for sailing, provides leadership 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 AlphaGraphics. For more information, please visit www.ussailing.org.
LaserPerformance formally Vanguard Sailboats has a long history of providing benefits and support to US SAILING, its members, events, and programs. Today, LaserPerformance has the role of official sponsor of the US Youth Championships, the U.S. Junior Women's Doublehanded Championship, the U.S. Junior Women's Singlehanded Championship, the U.S. Singlehanded Sailing Championship, the U.S. Junior Singlehanded and Doublehanded Championships, and the U.S. Team Racing Championship. LaserPerformance's commitment to supplying the boats and support for these events is what helps to ensure high caliber competition at these Championships. Many of the world's most popular dinghies are built by LaserPerformance. Boats being supplied to US SAILING Championships are the Laser, the Laser Radial, and the Vanguard 15. For more information on LaserPerformance, call 401-683-0960 or visit their web site at www.laserperformance.com.