By Maya Somers
Three members of the Stanford sailing team spent the weekend in South Kingstown, R.I., competing in the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA) Men’s and Women’s Singlehanded Championships. In 14 total races over Saturday and Sunday, the Cardinal captured individual finishes at second, fourth and ninth place overall.
In the women’s open, senior Christina Sakellaris earned a second-place finish out of 14 women’s boats. She placed second in the 2019 singlehanded championships and maintained that placement this year after a tight competition with Jacksonville University junior Charlotte Rose, who took first. Sakellaris won the first three races before posting her highest score of 10 points in the fifth race. She and Rose dominated Sunday’s seven races, splitting the wins with three first-place finishes for Sakellaris and four for Rose. In the end, Sakellaris finished with 32 overall points, just three behind Rose, after a strong performance with seven wins over the 14 races.
Just two slots behind Sakellaris, freshman Grace Austin finished fourth with 74 points in total. Austin posted her highest place finish at second in the sixth race, at which point she was in third place overall. She followed up with back-to-back 10th place finishes, driving her score up to 47 going into the ninth race. Austin collected a consistent four or five points in the final six races to earn a fourth-place finish, edging out a Charleston boat in fifth that had captured a win in the fifth round.
As the only Stanford boat in the men’s open, junior John Kirkpatrick posted 158 total points to take ninth place out of 41 men’s boats. On Saturday, Kirkpatrick had already received his first 80 points by the fifth round after placing 20th in the second race and his lowest at 36th in the fourth race. He then proceeded to improve his scores in Sunday’s races, culminating in two third place finishes in the 11th and 13th races. Capturing ninth place marks a rise in the ranks for Kirkpatrick, who finished 11th in the singlehanded championships in fall 2019.
The sailing team now looks forward to the ICSA Women’s, Team Race and Coed National Championships taking place May 19-20, June 2-3 and June 7-8, respectively, in Annapolis, Md.