FAQ's

As the journey continues toward the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London 2012, it’s easy to brush up on the every day words that get thrown around US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider. These bullet points are the common language, terms and phrases that might make you wonder what is being talked about, but don’t fret, just follow along as we give a brief explanation:

London 2012 – pretty self explanatory, this is he short hand for the Games of the XXX Olympiad in London, England July 27-August 12.  http://www.london2012.com/

Weymouth – The beautiful southern England town of Weymouth is the host city for Olympic and Paralympic Sailing Regatta. Located near southern cliffs, the town rests on the western crest of the English Channel. It has the charm of a small destination city and while it doesn’t have fastest internet in the world, it does have its own Starbucks.

Satellite Venue – There are many satellite venues for the Games in London 2012. Great Britain has a long tradition of sailing prowess, and since you can’t quite race on the Thames River, the best location outside of London is the coastal areas of Weymouth & Portland. It will still have all of the excitement of the Games, but we are hoping for less traffic and congestion. Beach seating is another plus.

Portland – The small island that connected by a causeway, south of Weymouth. This is where we spend most of our time as a team because of its close proximity to the Academy and our team base (see below). It has many quarries that date back to 1539.

Dorset – The county where Weymouth and Portland are located. While the name is thrown around here, we don”t use it very much, except when referencing the excellent local newspaper the Dorset Echo.

Academy (WPNSA) – Built specifically to host this and other massive sailing competitions, the Weymouth Portland National Sailing Academy is where all athletes, organizers, staff and media will be for hours every day. Want to see it for yourself? Take a look through the web cam.

Camp Billingham (our team base) – Thanks to the vision of Olympic Sailing Committee member Bob Billingham, many generous donations, gifts, and other contributions, the US Sailing Team acquired a facility close to the WPNSA where USA athletes and support staff can operate in a “home away from home.”  Boat work, meetings, storage and internet access are just a few of the many great amenities that are used on a daily basis during training and events in Weymouth.

Trials – The trials have taken an international flavor to decide the athletes who will represent the USA at the Olympic Games in London 2012. But trials isn’t quite the proper terminology. Read more about the Olympic and Paralympic Teams selection procedures.

Classes  – What are the boats that are used in the Olympics and Paralympics?

There are certain sailing disciplines (which we normally call fleets/divisions) that incorporate the equipment (class/type of boats) used in each. There are 10 Olympic Classes and 3 Paralympic listed below (also reference trials tracker):

Olympic:

Discipline

Class/Type of Boat

Number of Person

Men”s Two Person Dinghy

470

2

Women”s Two Person Dinghy

470

2

Men”s Two Person Dinghy High Performance

49er

2

Women”s Match Racing

Elliott 6m

3

Men”s One Person Dinghy – Heavy

Finn

1

Men’2012-01-30 17:43:15’s One Person Dinghy

Laser

1

Women”s One Person Dinghy

Laser Radial

1

Men”s Windsurfing

RS:X

1

Women”s Windsurfing

RS:X

1

Men”s Keelboat

Star

2

Total

10

16

Paralympic:

Discipline

Class/Type of Boat

Number of Person

Open One Person Keelboat

2.4mR

1

Mixed Two Person Keelboat

SKUD

2

Open Three Person Keelboat

Sonar

3

Total

3

6

Test Event – One year to go to the Olympic Games, August 2-13, 2011, there was a dry run of how to host and run a massive and important event. That event was the Weymouth & Portland International Regatta 2011. With all of the logistics of a modern day Olympics, it was good practice.

 

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