The UCSB sailing team visited Stanford University this weekend for two days of training and scrimmage racing. Stanford’s knowledgeable, and high-ranking sailing program gave UCSB the opportunity to gain experience going into the season towards nationals.
“The East Coast is extremely more competitive than the West Coast, and Stanford travels almost every weekend to the East Coast to sail,” sophomore Captain Grant Rickon said. “Being able to practice with them is like having our own East Coast regatta.”
Training outside of Santa Barbara gave the team the chance to judge themselves not only based on each other, but on how well they compare to other East-Coast like teams.
“Stanford is a highly developed team, and we performed as best as we could,” Rickon said. “They sailed very well in comparison to us during the scrimmages, but we also sailed very well.”
Head Coach Brad Schaupeter and Stanford Head Coach John Vandemoer arranged the practice so the teams could train for the upcoming Fall Pacific Coast Collegiate Sailing Conference, which determines the qualifying teams for the national semi-final regatta.
“We are ranked second in our conference, and Stanford is the only one [in the conference] that high up on the national level,” Schaupeter said. “Practicing with them gets a lot of boats on the line and a lot more high-level competition.”
With a team comprised of mostly freshman and sophomores, the dynamics of this young team are similar to the UCSB sailing program itself, as it has evolved and become successful very quickly. It is now ranked among the top 25 teams in the nation.
“The methods Stanford uses to sail are used across their team, and they explained the reasoning behind them to us,” sophomore Ginger Luckey said. “For a nationally ranked team to explain to us what they do and why they do it and how they’ve become the fastest is very helpful.”
Coming off of a successful set of scrimmaging and training will only help the team in the upcoming PCCSC race next weekend.
“It feels like now in the conference, we are very far ahead from the rest of the competition for second,” Schaupter said.
The club is always looking for new sailors and holds practices for novices on Fridays for anyone interested in sailing.
This article is an online exclusive and did not appear in the print edition of the Daily Nexus.