FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jake Fish
US Sailing Communications Manager
PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (August 14, 2012) – Talented young sailors in four fleets will be put to the test this week on the Columbia River Gorge at US Sailing’s 2012 Youth Championships. The four day regatta begins this Wednesday, August 15. The Columbia Gorge Racing Association in Cascade Locks, Ore. will play host to this premier US Sailing Championship. The venue is well known for its fierce winds and ferocious currents. All competitors are selected by US Sailing through a resume based application process.
In the 13 team 29er division, last year’s defending champions Paris Henken (Coronado, Calif.) and Connor Kelter (Newport Beach, Calif.) face a talented group of challengers. Several teams competing this week were in contention at last weekend’s 29er National Championship at the Gorge. Antoine Screve (Ross, Calif.) and Mac Agnese (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) finished second out of 34. They have also represented the US at the ISAF Youth Worlds in 2011 and finished second. Screve was third in 2010 with James Moody (Tiburon, Calif.), who is crewing with Scott Buckstaff (Belvedere, Calif.) this week. Christopher Williford (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and Kai Friesecke (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) will also be on hand after placing third at the 29er Nationals. Finishing fifth at the Gorge last weekend was Duncan Williford (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) and Dane Wilson (Ojai, Calif.). Wilson was fourth overall at the ISAF Youth World Championships in Dublin, Ireland with brother Quinn Wilson. The 2011 European Champions, Zack Downing (Leucadia, Calif.) and Andrew Cates (San Diego, Calif.), are also likely to be a factor in this year’s regatta. They were the top youth team at the 29er German National Championships and seventh at the 29er Nationals (U.S.).
The defending Laser Radial champion is also returning to this year’s fleet. Two-time ILCA Youth World Champion, Erika Reineke (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) is sure to face tough competition in the 26 boat fleet. Reineke will clash this week with fellow US Sailing Development Team member Mitchell Kiss (Holland, Mich.). Kiss is having an outstanding year in the Radial, winning the Orange Bowl Youth Regatta and the US Nationals in Houston. He followed these victories with an overseas tour, where he took bronze at the ILCA Youth Worlds and fourth at the ISAF Youth Worlds. After an outstanding win in San Francisco last week at US Sailing’s Chubb US Junior Championships in the Byte CII, Addison Hackstaff (St. Petersburg, Fla.) will be a top contender at the Gorge as well.
Olin Paine (San Diego, Calif.) returns to defend his crown in the 16 boat Laser Full Rig fleet. Defending this title will not be an easy task. This year’s list of challengers includes last year’s runner-up, Greg Martinez (Houston, Texas), who has shown he is one of the strongest youth sailors in the Laser class this year by winning the Orange Bowl Youth Regatta. Jack Barton (San Anselmo, Calif.), who won the J/22 fleet at the Chubb US Junior Championship, will test his skills in the singlehanded Laser fleet this week.
This year’s 33 boat C420 fleet has perhaps the deepest talent pool in the regatta. Representing the West Coast, The C420 National Champion skipper Will La Dow (San Diego, Calif.) will be sailing with Mary Isler (LaJolla, Calif.). From the East Coast, Bradley Adam (East Greenwich, R.I.) and Charles MacBain (Portsmouth, R.I.) will also be a factor. The duo won the 142 boat C420 North American Championship in July, and was sixth at last year’s US Youth Championship. Allyson Donahue (Brigantine, N.J.) and Maddie Widmeier (Pipersville, Penn.) won the US Junior Women’s Doublehanded Championship in June, and recently finished fourth at the C420 North American Championship. Scott Sinks (San Diego, Calif.) and Christopher Ford (Millbrae, Calif.) are coming off great performances on separate teams at the Chubb US Junior Championships. Ford won the C420 division as skipper with Daniel Ron (Houston, Texas), who will be sailing with Esteban Forrer (Coronado, Calif.). Sinks placed third as the skipper with Patrick Snow.
Visit the event website at http://championships.ussailing.org/Youth/US_Youth_Champs.htm for daily recaps, standings, results, videos, photo galleries and more. To get up-to-the-minute updates from the championship, follow us on Twitter and Facebook
US Sailing’s U.S. Youth Sailing Championships is sponsored by Sperry Top-Sider, Zim Sailing, Gill North America and SWITLIK Survival Products. The championship is a Sailors for the Sea - Clean Regattas certification event.
• Regatta dates are Wednesday through Saturday (Aug. 15-18). Racing begins Wednesday at 12 pm PDT and at 10:30 am PDT on Thursday through Saturday.
• There are a total of 12 sailors representing the US Sailing Development Team this week: Andrew Cates, Zack Downing, Kai Friesecke, Paris Henken, Connor Kelter, Mitchell Kiss, Greg Martinez, Niki Medley, Erika Reineke, Erik Weis, Christopher Williford, Dane Wilson
• Three races are required to be completed to constitute a series. When fewer than six races have been completed, a boat’s series score will be the total of her race scores. When six or more races have been completed, a boat’s series score will be the total of her race scores excluding her worst score.
• The top placing male in the Laser and the top placing female in the Laser Radial fleet qualify for the U.S. Singlehanded Championships.
• US Sailing Championship medals will be awarded to competitors who finish first through fifth in the Laser Radial and C420 fleets. Medals for competitors who finish first through third will be awarded in the 29er and Laser Full Rig fleets.
• The David M. Perry Perpetual Sportsmanship Trophy will be awarded, as well as sportsmanship keepers, in each discipline.
• Steve Wrigley is U.S. Youth Championship Chair and Jarvis Brecker is the Event Chair.
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 Top-Sider. For more information, please visit www.ussailing.org.
About Sperry Top-Sider
Since 1935, Sperry Top-Sider has been the leading brand of footwear for those with a Passion for the Sea®. From its introduction of the world’s first siped rubber outsole for non-marking traction to advanced technical fabrication to combat the elements, Sperry Top-Sider remains the vanguard of high-performance amphibious footwear for life and activities in, on and around the water.
Available around the globe in independent, marine, outdoor, department stores and on www.sperrytopsider.com, Sperry Top-Sider is the official footwear of the Sperry Top-Sider NOOD Regattas, Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week, the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider and the National Safe Boating Council.
Since early 2010, the brand has launched 18 Sperry Top-Sider retail stores in the US – retail stores dedicated to the Passion for the Sea® lifestyle. Sperry Top-Sider is a division of the Collective Brands Performance and Lifestyle Group, a subsidiary of Collective Brands, Inc. (NYSE: PSS). For more information, please visit www.sperrytopsider.com.
About Zim Sailing
Zim Sailing, headquartered in Warren, R.I. is the fastest growing manufacturer of one-design sailboats in North America. Currently, Zim manufactures and distributes the Optimist, Club 420, CFJ and the Byte CII. Zim’s customers include high schools, colleges, yacht clubs, community sailing centers and the passionate dinghy sailor. Zim boats have won several local, regional, National and North American championships since the company’s creation in 2008. Zim is dedicated to the success and growth of dinghy sailing. Zim’s experienced staff and support vehicles can be found at many regattas. For more information, please visit www.zimsailing.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Gill North America
Gill NA, with headquarters near Atlanta, Ga. is the sole distributor and licensee of Gill-brand foul weather gear in North America including Caribbean, Central America, US and Canada. Gill is an apparel and accessories leader in the worldwide marine industry for over three decades and specializes in high tech, breathable waterproof clothing. The company tests, designs and markets a variety of performance-oriented, award-winning apparel and accessories for virtually every type of boating activity with product lines that include foul weather gear; interactive layering systems; footwear; gloves; bags; junior gear; scholastic gear and team wear. Available through hundreds of dealers nationally, Gill NA is the sole distributor and licensee of Gill-brand foul weather gear in North America, where it is the top selling yachting clothing brand. For more information on Gill NA, visit the company website at www.gillna.com or contact Lance Jones at Gill NA, (678) 730-5581 / e-mail: email@example.com.
About SWITLIK Survival Products
SWITLIK is proud to be a sponsor of the U.S. Youth and Junior Sailing Championships, the pinnacle of performance dinghy sailing for America’s young adults. These fine young sailors exhibit the same type of drive, performance and perseverance that goes into every SWITLIK product.
Established in 1920, SWITLIK has been family owned and operated for four generations. Known worldwide as a manufacturer of the highest quality personnel safety and survival products for the marine, aviation and military/government markets, SWITLIK products are designed and manufactured in the USA to meet the toughest performance standards. From the world's finest race marks to the most trusted survival equipment and technical protective clothing, SWITLIK products are defined by Quality, Performance and Innovation, every day, in all we do. SWITLIK - Simply the best for over 90 years. For more information, please visit www.SWITLIK.com.