Catch a Breeze
The world sails through Kemah: Championship brings Olympians to Texas waters
The World Cup and Wimbledon are not the only international sporting events that take place in June. Kemah, Texas gets a little action too. That's right, Kemah.
The 2010 Laser North American Championship took place at Texas Corinthian Yacht Club (TCYC) over the weekend, bringing 188 sailors from around the globe to Texas' waters. The competition was waged in three classes of sailing: Lasers, Laser Radials and Laser 4.7 boats, with Radials split into two groups of 47, dubbed Gold and Silver.
Katie Cummings of Seabrook, Texas, 18, sailed in the Laser Radial Gold races and enjoyed competing with young sailors from around the world. From the moment, Cummings showed up at the pier, she knew this wasn't just another sailboat race.
“It’s exciting to meet new people that race Lasers," Cummings said. "It’s fun sailing against people from different cultures — it’s a good change.”
With coaches and boats in tow, sailors came in from all over the United States, as well as Argentina, Venezuela, Canada, Guatemala and England, just to name a few. Flags from all the countries represented waved proudly from the dock at TCYC. Included in this wave of internationality were Olympic sailors like Jose Miguel Ruiz. The Championship brought some of the best sailors in the world to Texas.
The event began Thursday, but the races were postponed due to light wind conditions. Trying to make up for lost time, TCYC Race Committee ran four races on Friday, which meant some sailors were on the water until early evening. Saturday and Sunday conditions proved to be fairer and they were able to complete nine races in the Laser class, eight races in the Laser 4.7 class and 10 races in the Laser Radial groups. Inner and outer trapezoid courses were set up to accommodate the large group.
International sailors even bring out the paparazzi — at least, the sailing paparazzi.
Chris Love of Sailgroove.org was on hand during the weekend for video coverage and interviews. Sailgroove.org is a website dedicated to supporting youth sailing through video interviews with up-and-coming sailors from around the world and online race coverage.
Juan Ignacio Maelgi won the Laser class, Brendan Shanahan took Lasers 4.7 class honors and Alec Anderson finished first in the Radial Gold Series. Complete race results can be found here.