by Geoffrey Gold
The Sailing Team has been a Salisbury University club organization since the 2007- 2008 school year.
The team competes in the Middle Atlantic Intercollegiate Sailing Association in the East Coast Southern Division. SU is one of 26 colleges and universities in the MAISA.
“It’s really simple and it’s a lot of fun,” said club member and senior Shaylyn Leary. “The best part of being in the Sailing Club is the team bonding and making so many friends.”
There are currently about 30 students in the club, but only about 15 are active participants.
Participating in the sailing club is a big time commitment, with the club holding practices three days a week for four or five hours a day, during the spring, summer and fall.
The club uses small racing boats called Flying Juniors, or “FJ’s.” The FJ is a 13-foot, 9-inch two-person high-performance racing boat that uses a mainsail, a jib and a spinnaker during races. The boat also uses a trapeze, which allows a crew member to suspend over the side of the boat and keep it balanced during racing.
“Almost none of the members of the club had sailing experience before joining the sailing team,” Leary said.
The team competes during the spring and fall semesters and travels extensively from northern New Jersey to southern Virginia. The team sails in both co-ed and women’s regattas, often against much larger university teams, including Georgetown University, American University, the University of Maryland and the University of Virginia.
This year the team competed at Old Dominion University, Christopher Newport University, William & Mary, the US Naval Academy and the University of Delaware.
The team practices at the Ocean Pines Yacht Club, which is just outside Ocean City, Md.
“The hardest part is the time commitment,” Leary said. “In addition to the three-day-a-week practice, they’re away almost every weekend during season.”
The Sailing Team can be found on Facebook under “Salisbury Sailing Club.”
Leary says the club welcomes anyone who would like to learn to sail.
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