O'Connor and the Crimson are seeking a New England title and nationals berth (photo courtesy Rob Migliaccio).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—The Harvard sailing team has competed in more than 40 events in a season that begins in September and carries on through the entire academic year. The Crimson hopes all that hard work will pay off starting this weekend at the New England Dinghy Championship, the first championship regatta of the spring.
Coach O'Connor's Preview
Scroll down for a video interview with Harvard head coach Mike O'Connor reviews Harvard's coed performance so far and previews the weekend action at the New England Championship.
The Crimson will race at Connecticut College Saturday and Sunday, looking to win a New England title and put itself in position to make a run at a national championship as the season winds down in May and June.
The top eight teams from the New England regatta will advance to the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association National Semifinals May 1-2 at College of Charleston and Seattle. Nine teams from each semifinal round will move on to the ICSA Coed Dinghy National Championship June 1-3 at Wisconsin.
Junior captain Alan Palmer and Meghan Wareham will sail in the A division, while John Stokes and Tedd Himler will skipper Harvard's B-division entry, with Michelle Konstadt starting at crew. O'Connor could use a variety of athletes in the crew positions, depending on the wind and conditions.
The Crimson's last major fleet-racing was March 27-28, when it placed fourth at the Old Guard regatta and Boston Dinghy Club Cup. Led by Palmer, Harvard placed second in the A division at the Old Guard, just three points back of division-winning Yale. Skippers Wareham, Konstadt and Winston Yan all contributed to the runner-up finish as well.
A week earlier, Harvard had another strong showing, placing sixth in the 20-team, four-division Truxtun Umstead regatta at Navy. Stokes skippered the Crimson to a second-place showing in the B division, with Wareham and Quincy Bock handling the crew duties.
Looking Way Back
Harvard advanced to the national semifinals with a seventh-place showing at last season's New England coed regatta. Palmer guided the Crimson to a third-place finish in the A division. Himler and Stokes also gained championship-regatta experience. Wareham competed in the women's championship, where she helped Harvard place second.