Sailing Competes in Two Regattas, Fails to Qualify for Team Race Nationals

In both of the two regattas this weekend the Harvard co-ed sailing team faced fierce competition on the water. The Crimson finished 13th in the Morris Trophy and sixth in and Fowle Trophy. While the sixth place finish did not earn the squad a place in the team racing nationals, Harvard still focuses forward to its temporary departure from the New England Intercollegiate Sailing Association (NEISA) to participate in national co-ed and women’s fleet racing regattas in the coming weeks.

George Morris Trophy

Harvard sailed in the ninth annual George Morris Trophy at Boston University on Saturday and Sunday.

While the races began with a western wind of seven to 12 knots, the shifts and gusts increased in size and frequency as the day progressed. Sunday, the breezes spanned five to 15 knots.

In division A, freshman Emma Smith and sophomore Luke O’Connor finished in the fifteenth spot.

In division B, senior William White, who is also a Crimson Staff Editor, and sophomore Ben Lamont bolstered up the Harvard team score with a seventh place finish.

“It’s probably Will White’s last regatta,” co-captain and boatmate Lamont said. “He’s sailed four years for us and he’s been a really important part of our team. He’s a wonderful guy, so I’ll miss sailing with him.”

The Crimson squad finished with 248 points total—an impressive 98 points in the B division, combined with 150 points from the young A division pair settled Harvard at 13th place out of 16 teams.

The Crimson finished one spot ahead of MIT, but even with the boost from Lamont and White, the other teams Harvard routinely faces—Boston College, Boston University, Yale, and Tufts—all bested the squad.


MIT hosted the Fowle Trophy, which also served as the 2012 NEISA Team Race Championship, on the Charles River last weekend. The prize raised the stakes; here, top finishers of this regatta qualified for team racing nationals.

Team racing at the Fowle Trophy differs from fleet racing at the George Morris Trophy and the majority of Harvard’s other regattas. In a fleet racing regatta, teams face many competitors and receive a point value correlated to their score, whereas in team racing regattas, teams face one another head-to-head and work as a unit to get a top finish for the entire group.

The Fowle announced two predetermined groups of six teams to compete insularly on Saturday. The top four teams from each set of six moved to the gold division on Sunday, whereas the bottom two competed for consolation. In the gold division, teams compete in round-robin style tournaments.

On day one, Harvard sailed with unit B. In addition to the Crimson, Boston College, Roger Williams, Dartmouth, Boston University, and Vermont composed the division of six.

On the cusp between fourth and fifth place, Harvard tied with Vermont. At the end of the day, the two teams raced in a tiebreaker to decide which team competed in the gold division and still had the opportunity to qualify for nationals and which sailed for consolation.