CANFIELD GOES UNDEFEATED IN FIRST DAY AT CHICAGO OPEN B REGATTA
June 6, 2010
After completing single Round-Robin, fleet is split into Gold and Silver fleets to seed for Semi-Finals tomorrow.
Chicago, IL – After winning yesterday the Chicago Match Race Center’s (CMRC) Chicago Open A Regatta, US Virgin Islander Taylor Canfield has continued his winning ways to take an early lead in CMRC’s Chicago Open B Regatta, the second half of a 2-for-1 long weekend of match racing. Canfield and team went undefeated today, first winning all seven of his Round-Robin matches, then the first in the second stage mini-round robin held among the top four teams in the Gold Fleet. Three of these top four will qualify for tomorrow’s Semi-Final round, while the top finisher in the bottom-four Silver Fleet will advance in that stage of the two-day competition.
Canfield, a 21-year old student at Boston College and recent winner of the US Collegiate Nationals, remained nearly error-free until a penalty in the pre-start in his Round-Robin match against Key West Invitational winner Guy Mossman. But the action got more interesting at the final top mark rounding, where he not only successfully performed his penalty turn to even the score, but brought one against Mossman in the process, though Mossman managed to take the lead in the final run to the finish.
“Since just getting into this game this year, I’ve learned just enough to be dangerous,” admitted Mossman, a Melges 24 sailor from Charleston. “That didn’t help us in that match.” On the final approach to the finish, but not with enough lead to complete his penalty turn, Mossman tried gybing to port in the 2-length zone at the finish pin and lure Canfield into gybing – it didn’t work, and Mossman earned two more penalty flags, one being black.
There were many other close encounters in today’s 8 flights, many due to the shifty puffy 6-14 knot conditions from the north, where wild swings in breeze direction and pressure kept the teams and race managers extremely busy. Rolling seas and their bounce-backs from the seawall added to the challenge, and a brief squall rolling through with rain and a huge shift shut of the action until the skies cleared to allow racing in the first round of the second stage, but another squall with lightning forced a conclusion in the eighth hour on the water.
Besides Canfield and Mossman, also qualifying for the Gold Fleet is Don Wilson and Bob Hughes, who said he feels he’s making steady progress after his mediocre 5th place finish in the “A” Regatta, despite having World Match Race Tour contender Torvar Mirsky and his team on board to help learn the tricks of the trade.
“I feel the first day I was knocking off big chunks of rust [from not having sailed for months], the second day medium chunks, and today slightly smaller chunks,” said the self-deprecating Hughes, who is no slouch, being the reigning Canada’s Cup champion. “We’re making measurable progress, which is encouraging.”
Silver Fleet qualifiers include Danielle Soriano, Joe Markee, and newcomers David Storrs and Kevin Teborek, who are competing in their first CMRC event. Despite not having stellar results, both were enthusiastic about match racing in general and the CMRC in particular.
“Our day today was better than our score,” said Storrs. “This was one of the best days of sailing I’ve ever had, and I think its phenomenal to have the CMRC to put on an event of this caliber.” Storrs has perennial Women’s match race champion and US Olympian Sally Barkow on board trimming the main.
Teborek, a successful Laser II sailor and 470 Class Olympic aspirant, nearly qualified for the Gold Fleet on 3 wins in the Round Robin, and is sailing this event with family members. “We sail together once a year,” he laughed, “but its still great fun, we’re learning a lot about match racing, and look forward to tomorrow.”
Live commentary will be also be provided on site tomorrow by Tucker Thompson, with updates, photos and videos available on the internet through the CMRC website. Shoreside activities including competitor briefings, press conferences, umpire debriefs and awards ceremonies will be held before and after racing in and around the CMRC floating regatta center moored at the North end of Belmont Harbor.
For more information about the CMRC Open A and Open B Regattas, stop by CMRC or contact CMRC Director of Marketing and Programming Beth Paul on 312-542-1505 or visit www.chicagomatchrace.com.
Official Partners of CMRC are CME Group and NYSE Liffe; CMRC’s Official Hotel Partner is City Inns; and CMRC’s Official Apparel Partner is Line Honors.