The Belmont Hill sailing team is coming to the end of a challenging season in 2017, succeeding in both formats of high school sailing. One of these formats, and the more common in the world of sailing, is called fleet racing. This is where the boats, typically around 20 in high school regattas, race every boat for themselves, competing to finish ahead of as many boats as they can. A number of races constitute a regatta, which usually lasts all day, or on some occasions, all weekend. The sailing team had a very successful year in fleet racing. The team qualified for New England’s, held at MIT, for the first time in over a decade, after a strong result in the most competitive of the four regional qualifiers in Marblehead. The team also went up to Castine, ME for the Downeast Regatta, a two day where the sailors stayed over in the Maine Maritime barracks. The team finished second overall while winning A fleet. This past week the team competed at the Mass States, on the Charles River, finishing third overall.
The other format of high school sailing is team racing, which is almost exclusive to high school sailing. This is where two teams face off on a race course, each with three boats, and try to position their boats so that they cross the finish line ahead of the other team’s boats. So instead of trying to finish ahead of as many boats as possible like in fleet racing, in team racing a boat winning the race may need to come back in order to help their other teammates get ahead of a boat on the opposite team.
The team had a slow start in team racing, losing two very closes matches against Moses Brown and BC High, but were able to finish the season with a winning record.
The team loses two seniors this year, Jacob Whitney, the top crew on the team for over 4 years, and Bennett Rush, recent winner of the sportsmanship award. Stephen Pellegrino will join Jack Murphy as captains next year.