MIAMI, Fla. (November 18, 2020) – It was a single scull family reunion in Miami, Fla. Last weekend at the Skiff Generation Grand Prix, a brand new training platform for sailing development performance in the United States with three classes of single sculls in a regatta: the 49er, the 49er FX and the 29er. Seven athletes from the US Sailing Team took to the water on Biscayne Bay for eight races over two days and swept the podium as they began their first real race in months. Overall, the team performed well on the water in various conditions.
It’s history beyond the numbers that makes last weekend even more vital to the US Sailing Team’s trajectory towards the 2024 and 2028 Games. Event organizer Philip Muller said had a vision in early 2020 for a series to bridge the gap between single scull classes and bring the whole lineup together at one event. Phil, the head coach of 2NINER, a Miami-based high performance sailing program, an Olympic development coach and one of the coaches of the US Sailing Youth World Championships, was in a unique position to put his vision into action. The creation of the Skiff Generation Grand Prix series epitomizes the continued growth of the youth pipeline in high performance racing.
An added benefit that became evident during the event was the excitement felt by the 29er sailors as they shared the circle with America’s top sailors in their own progression to Olympic class boats. The young sailors of the 29-inch fleet raced alongside the athletes of the US Sailing Team, and their dreams of bigger, faster boats came true.
Spectators observed the sharing of information between classes as competitors provided advice between races, and when asked why the Skiff Generation Grand Prix is a ‘must see’ event, the 29er sailors overwhelmingly cited the openness of the group and the coaches and their willingness to pass on their knowledge to less experienced runners.
It was a historic weekend for the Olympic development program, as it signaled a significant effort to support the “pipeline” of sailors training to board Olympic-class boats. With a total of 22 single sculls on the water in Miami, it was an inspiring vision of the importance of regional development. Event # 3 is scheduled for December 10-13 for the 49er / 49erFX North American Championships and December 12-13 for the 29ers.
Congratulations to the fleet winners: Stephanie Roble (East Troy, Wisconsin) and Severin Gramm, who replaced Maggie Shea (Wilmette, Ill.) In the 49erFX, and Harry Melges IV (Fontana, Wisconsin) and Finn Rowe (Fontana, Wisconsin ) in the 49er.
Other American sailing team arrivals Ian Barrows (St. Thomas, USVI) and Hans Henken (Coronado, Calif.) Finished second, and Tokyo test winners Nevin Snow (San Diego, Calif.) And Dane Wilson (Ojai, Calif.) Third in the 49er fleet. Results / Final classification
The US Sailing Team would like to thank Philip Muller and the whole 2NINER team for their tireless efforts to bringg the vision of life with the support of the title sponsor, the Kolter Group; Carol Ewing and her race committee crew; and all the parent volunteers for the event. The team are also grateful to Severin Gramm who joined Roble’s team in the 49erFX. He showed a real showing support to help keep team athletes sharp, running active and able to recover when needed. His participation this weekend is the essence of the US Sailing Team squad, and we applaud his attitude and dedication within the team.
Thank you, event sponsors: Kolter Group, 49er.ca, Zig Travel, iUniforms, and sailing performance training