Monday, October 19, 2015

Leitner Wins J/24 Mallory Cup!

J/24 sailing off Manhattan YC in New York (New York, NY)- The Manhattan skyline was the perfect, dramatic, backdrop for one of US Sailing’s most historic championships on October 10-12. Sailors from as far west as Hawaii and as far south as Florida raced over three days for the Clifford D. Mallory Trophy at the 2015 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship.

Fourteen teams comprised of both men and women ranging in age from 19 to 69 raced J/24 class sailboats in New York Harbor. First raced in 1952, the 2015 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship was hosted by Manhattan Yacht Club.

In what was described as a “miracle race” by Eric Leitner, the host club representative from the Manhattan Yacht Club, edged out a competitive field in the final race to win the regatta.

After three days of racing, Mark Hillman of the Chesapeake Bay Yacht Racing Association, who was in the lead entering the 12th and final race, finished in second overall just two points behind Leitner.

J/24s sailing- Freedom Tower- New York, NY“In the last race, we rounded the windward mark in sixth and were going to gybe, but the boats gybed inside of us, so we held off and all the boats passed us,” explained Leitner. “We went right and just hoped it played out. We were the furthest team right and when we came in we managed to squeeze in front of the two boats and the rest is history.”

Leitner’s crew included Adam Sandberg, Doug Witter, and Michael Ambrose, and Tom Sinatra. The come-from-behind win was capped off when Leitner’s team finished second and first in Monday’s two races. They were eight points behind Hillman when the day started. Hillman posted a pair of seventh place finishes on Monday.

Carter White of the Northeast Sailing Association also had a strong finish by placing first and second on the final day. The top three teams were separated by just five points.

J/24s sailing off New York City, New York“We probably had about three and a half knots of current out here, so it was pretty crazy,” mentioned White. “In only four or five knots of breeze, that made things difficult. We had some interesting mark roundings where you had to sail past the mark and pray you could get around it. It made it challenging but everyone had the same body of water to sail in.  It’s just great to get in equal boats with people of equal skill sets, which made for some close racing.  The nice part of this event is that it moves around the country each year. If we can do it, we’d love to race at this event again.”

Hillman’s team that took the silver was comprised of Jon Forst, Eric Reinke, and Ron Weed. White’s third place team consisted of Molly White, Michael Mcallister, Ben McAndrew, and Fiona Gordon.  Finishing fourth was North Jersey Yacht Racing Association’s team of Talbott Ingram, David Whittle, Carol Lee Ingram, Stuart Van Winkle, and Robert Slook.  Fifth place was Texas Sailing Association’s Bryan Dyer, Tony Waldon, Jeffrey Keller, and Marc Nilsson.   For more US Adult Sailing Championship/ Clifford D. Mallory Trophy sailing information