The first stops on the US Open Sailing Series were held February 14-16 in Fort Lauderdale and Miami, FL. Competitors saw a wide range of conditions – from zero knots to gusts over 20 knots – on the ocean and Biscayne Bay courses.
Competitors in Miami and Lauderdale were met with gusty and challenging conditions on the first day, with a shallower sea state in Biscayne Bay than in Fort Lauderdale’s open ocean. Race committee combated light, inconsistent breeze on the following two days, with the Miami event taking advantage of early morning breeze and calling athletes to the boat park at dawn.
Top finishers were honored with medals and the three top finishers in the Olympic disciplines (Women’s ILCA 6 and ILCA 7 at Ft. Lauderdale, and iQFoil Men & Women, Formula Kite Men & Women, 49er, 49erFX, and Mixed 470 in Miami) were awarded prize money for first, second, and third place.
The US Sailing Team and Squad dominated the 49er podium with the top three skiffs. Ian Barrows (St. Thomas, USVI) and Hans Henken (Coronado, CA) came out victorious with five bullets in their score line resulting in a seven-point lead over second place Nevin Snow (San Diego, CA) and Mac Agnese (Fort Lauderdale, FL). Just behind Snow and Agnese by three points and closing out the prize money was Andrew Mollerus (Larchmont, NY) and Ian MacDiarmid (Delray Beach, FL).
Paris Henken (Coronado, CA) and Anna Tunnicliffe Tobias (Pittsburgh, PA) hit the racecourse for their first regatta after teaming back up in the 49erFX with sights set on the Paris 2024 Olympics. The pair last made a run for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and took some time away from the boat after narrowly missing the Team USA spot.
Henken and Tunnicliffe Tobias secured the win at the Miami Open with six bullets, ahead of second place Ian and Noah Nyenhuis (San Diego, CA) who have recently transitioned out of the 29er and into Olympic skiffs. Thomas Sitzmann and Luke Woodworth rounded out the podium in third place, and two Canadian teams (Tate Howell & Adrianna Baird / Tara Golonka & Siobhan Golonka) claimed the final two cash prizes as they satisfied the two women-team requirements to classify them as an Olympic discipline.
Noah Lyons (Clearwater, FL) sailed a picket fence regatta in the Men’s iQFOiL fleet, showing his strength in both upwind course racing and downwind slalom racing. Behind Lyons was another Clearwater native, Alex Temko, with 15 points, and Geronimo Nores (Miami, FL) rounded out the Men’s iQFOiL podium with 21 points.
The Formula Kite fleet saw the greatest range of representation with 10 countries and territories on the water. Markus Edegran (West Palm Beach, FL) took home first place with only six points on his scoresheet, followed by Noah Runciman (Houston, TX) with 18 points and Valentin Bontus of Austria with 20 points.
Also in the fleet was 2021 Men’s Formula Kite World Champion, France’s Théo de Ramecourt, finishing in sixth place with 24 points behind USA’s Kai Calder (Alameda, CA) in 4th place and Evan Heffernan (Santa Barbara, CA) in 5th place.
Daniela Moroz (San Francisco, CA) came away with 1st place in a mostly international fleet, beating out her 2022 World Champion runner-up Lauriane Nolot (France). German kiter Leonie Meyer took second with 11 points, narrowly besting third place finisher Alina Kornelli (Austria).
In Fort Lauderdale, US Sailing Team athlete and local Erika Reineke captured the ILCA 6 fleet with only five points, over five races, dropping a sixth-place finish. Reineke, who was the top American at the 2022 ILCA 6 World Championship, is making her return to the class after a stint training in the 49erFX.
Peter Barnard, also a Lauderdale local, narrowly came in second with seven points. Reineke’s USST teammate Charlotte Rose (Houston, TX) claimed third, after starting her event off with two bullets in the yellow fleet.
As the top three women in the class, Reineke, Rose, and overall fifth place finisher Canadian Maura Dewey all were awarded $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place, and $250 for third.
Newly announced teammates but Olympic veterans Stu McNay (Providence, RI) and Lara Dallman-Weiss (Shoreview, MN) took their first regatta win together after pairing up to satisfy the upcoming 470 mixed gender requirement for Paris 2024.
Just behind in second place and joining McNay and Dallman-Weiss as the only two teams who never placed lower than third throughout the weekend was Louisa Nordstrom (Sarasota, FL) and Trevor Bornarth (Port Salerno, FL). Vanessa Lahrkamp (Rye, NY) and Thomas Whidden (Riverside, CT) claimed the final prize money offering with a nice point lead over fourth place.
The ILCA 7 fleet was dominated by Lauderdale Yacht Club athletes. Chapman Peterson (Lake Geneva, WI), who trains in Lauderdale, took first after a very consistent weekend, dropping a 6th as his worst score. Peterson was followed closely by Guthrie Braun, who finished second with 18 points. Robby Meek, also a Lauderdale Yacht Club sailor, came in a close third with 19 points overall.
1. Tyler and Andrew Lamm, USA
2. Fynn and Pierce Olsen, USA
3. Laura Hamilton and Carolina Zager, USA
1. Ian Barrows and Hans Henken, USA
2. Nevin Snow and Mac Agnese, USA
3. Andrew Mollerus and Ian MacDermid, USA
1. Paris Henken and Anna Tunicliffe Tobias, USA
2. Ian and Noah Nyanhuis, USA
3. Thomas Sitzman and Luke Woodworth
1. Dominique Stater, USA
2. Giovana Prada, BRA
3. Danicka Sailer, USA
1. Noah Lyons, USA
2. Alexander Temko, USA
3. Geronimo Nores, USA
Formula Kite Men
1. Markus Edegran, USA
2. Noah Runciman, USA
3. Valentin Bontus, AUT
Formula Kite Women
1. Daniela Moroz, USA
2. Leonie Meyer, GER
3. Alina Kornelli, AUT
Mixed 470 – full scores
1. Stuart McNay and Lara Dallman Weiss, USA
2. Luisa Nordstrom and Trevor Bornarth, USA
3. Vanessa Lahrkamp and Thomas Whidden, USA
1. Fernando Figuera, USA
2. Marina Wardlaw, USA
3. Louise Martin, USA
1. Erika Reineke, USA
2. Peter Barnard, USA
3. Charlotte Rose, USA
1. Chapman Peterson, USA
2. Guthrie Braun, USA
3. Robby Meek, USA
1. Cody Roe and KJ Hill, USA
2. Sophie and Tilly Niemann, USA
3. Connor and Brooke Mertz, USA
2023 US Open Sailing Series*
January 14-16: Fort Lauderdale, Florida
January 14-16: Miami, Florida
February 2-5: Clearwater, Florida
*Schedule for California events TBA
2022 California Schedule:
June 17-19: San Diego, California
July 15-17: Long Beach, California
August 12-14: San Francisco, California
Organized by US Sailing and host yacht clubs at venues in Florida and California, the 6-stage West Marine US Open Sailing Series has offered a domestic racing and training pathway for Olympic hopefuls in the US. The series also is an important part of the training plans for young sailors participating as part of the Olympic Development Program (ODP), a US Sailing initiative supported by the AmericaOne Foundation.
Source: US Sailing