Congratulations for making it to the 2013 U.S. Junior Women’s Doublehanded Championship (JWDC). I would like to welcome you to Bahia Corinthian Yacht Club, where I am the Junior Sailing Director. I was fortunate enough to compete for the Ida Lewis trophy as a junior three times. While not quite fortunate enough to win, I came close a couple of times. My favorite thing about the event is how close you become with your competitors. It is a chance to sail among the best from around the country.
I met sailors who I sailed against at many US Sailing regattas and throughout my college sailing career. Two of my college roommates were fellow competitors in this event when it was held in Rhode Island.
My skipper and I sailed our first JWDC in 2002, when it was hosted by Newport Harbor Yacht Club in Southern California. At the time, we were established Optimist sailors from Florida, but knew little about trapezes, spinnakers or working as a team. We fumbled through our boat-handling during the clinic days, but learned a great deal by asking the coaches LOTS of questions. Some of the teams had come from the Youth Championships and other national regattas, while we were sailing as a team for the first time. Despite our amateur status, we were quite pleased with our results, achieving a third place finish and qualifying for the 2003 Youth Worlds Team. We could not believe how far we had come over the course of the regatta. The friends we made during the week were all very excited for us. To us, this event was a springboard to other national and international regattas. We went on to sail in the U.S. Junior and Youth Championship, and the Youth Worlds that year. Both of us still look back and credit the talented coaches and competitors from the Ida Lewis Trophy competition who helped us begin successful sailing careers.
I hope you enjoy our sunny Southern California weather. Best of luck this week!