Five ODU Sailing Greats Team Up To Win U.S. Team Racing Championship

October 18, 2005
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Oct. 18, 2005

U.S. Team Racing Championship 2005 Sunday, October 16 by U.S. Sailing

Conditions: Northwest 25 to 30 knots with stronger gusts.

ODU Alumn's Brad Funk and Anna Tunnicliffe won the U.S. Team Racing Championships over the weekend. Tunnicliffe was the 2005 Women's Collegiate Sailor of the Year, three-time All-American and three-time singlehanded national champion as well as the ODU's alumni associations Female Athlete of the Year. Brad Funk ('02) was a two-time All-American at ODU. Matt Allen ('02) was All-American in 2002, Heather Pescatello ('00) was a three-time All-American and Mark Zagol ('99) earned All- American honors twice.

"Our motto's going to be `keep our sticks up'", yelled one boat from Team Trouble to another as they sailed into the final race of the semi-finals, down one race already. With winds gusting to 40 mph at one point, the final day of sailing at the U.S. Team Racing Championship for the George R. Hinman trophy was wet, wild and thrilling.

Keeping your sticks up turned out the phrase of the day as sixth-ranked Team Trouble won its semi finals against Team Racing World Champions Cape Cod WHishbone. In another upset, second-ranked Silver Panda lost its semi-final match to eighth-ranked Route 3 Split with Silver Panda capsizing at the start of both of its matches.

With the breezes continuing to build, the final races were to be the last of the day. Team Trouble won the first despite having to do spins earlier on. In race 2, Team Trouble once again had to spin and then as a strong puff blew through, capsized. It looked like Route 3 Split had it sewn up and then a second puff blew down one boat from each team. This gave Team Trouble's boat which had by now righted, a chance to get back in the game. With two boats in the water, the scores were tied. It would all come down to how fast the sailors could right their boats and how they would then tactically manage to finish. All of this is a fairly steady 30 knots of wind with higher gusts.

In the end, Team Trouble (Matt Allen, Glen Oaks, NY; Timothy Cain, Marlborough, NJ; Brad Funk, Belleair Bluffs, FL; Heather Pescatello, Westerly, RI; Anna Tunnicliffe, Norfolk, VA; and Mark Zagol, New York, NY) had the winning combination and are the 2005 U.S. Team Racing Champions. "Having only squeaked into the Gold Fleet, it's especially satisfying to have won," said Tim Cain. "Especially after then being down 1-0 in the semis" added teammate Brad Funk.

All of the competitors had nothing but high praises for this year's hosts, Larchmont Yacht Club who ran this event in conjunction with the Hinman Masters, an enormously complex undertaking chaired by Ed "Buttons" Padin. "When we originally scheduled this regatta for October, we thought we'd have great breezes. Our judgment was sound given the average of 25 knots of wind we sailed in. This made for challenging, and spectacular, team racing."

Larchmont Yacht Club is also to be congratulated for winning the Commodore George R. Hinman Invitational Masters trophy. Larchmont won all its races in the final round beating out a highly competitive team from Pequot Yacht Club in second and Eastern Yacht Club in third.