Not all stormy for STC >> Scuttlebutt Sailing News
The kids are back in school, and before winter and the holidays deter boating enthusiasts, it’s time to determine the best club in all of the country (earth of the United States). To do this, the Resolute Cup 2022, a Corinthian championship from September 12 to 17 in Newport, RI.
Two dozen clubs will take the test, including the Storm Trysail Club. Although there is no bar to lean on, this paper club is the driving force behind Block Island Race Week, as well as other renowned regattas and distance races, and a leader in safety education at sea. But their members can also run.
Among the more than 1,000 individual members are some of the most talented sailors in the country, including brothers Erik, John and Ian Storck, who will represent the STC in the sixth edition of the Resolute Cup. It will be the third time in a row that a trio of Storcks have sailed under the Storm Trysail burgee – her sister Kaitlin sailed with Erik and John in 2016. Both previous attempts have resulted in fourth places.
“The Resolute Cup is incredibly competitive,” says John Storck III, the eldest of the siblings. “While we were just off the podium in the last two editions, there were a lot of other equally good teams right behind us. There are a lot of teams that can finish on the podium.
Sailing in Sonars and RS21s, beyond national bragging rights is a coveted place in the biennial Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, the premier international Corinthian sailing regatta held in IC37s.
Both events will see STC spread its wings. Founded in 1938, the club has some of the strictest membership standards in the sport. It takes more than personal referrals and an initiation payment to join.
“[Membership] is by invitation only to expert offshore sailors who have experienced stormy conditions and are capable of commanding a sailboat in such conditions,” the club’s website states. In other words, until you’ve sailed in winds where a storm trial might be appropriate, you’re not qualified to participate.
Given this, it’s no surprise that the club is popular with veteran offshore sailors, but the sailing niches are not mutually exclusive, and the STC has in recent times also deployed more efforts to recruit teams for coastal events such as the Resolute Cup, San Diego Yacht the club’s Lipton Cup and the New York Yacht Club Grandmasters Team Race.
“While Storm Trysail’s DNA starts at 600 feet [depth] curve, our membership includes many accomplished sailor greats in a number of formats, including keelboats,” says Ed Cesare, Commodore of the Storm Trysail Club.
“The Resolute Cup and the Invitational Cup represent the highest level of Corinthian competition here in the United States and we have to compete. John chairs our Competition Committee and, along with former Commodore Lee Reichart, does a great job fielding competitive teams while ensuring opportunities are there for as many members as possible.
The Storck brothers fit Cesare’s description to a T. They grew up sailing the family boat in buoy and distance races on Long Island Sound and beyond and each went on to successful college sailing careers. Erik Storck, who will be the skipper of STC, represented the United States in the 49er class at the London Olympics in 2012.
“We are really lucky to have parents who made sailing a family sport,” says John Storck. “So when we get the chance [to sail together], it is an automatic decision for us. When you navigate with the same people for much of your life, you develop a synergy that can be helpful.
Fourth place on the Storm Trysail boat will go to Marie Klok Crump, a former top match racer and reigning US J/80 National Champion.
“We have sailed against Marie for a long time in the J/80s and have always had great respect for her competitiveness,” says John Storck. “[In 2019] we finally had the chance to sail together, and it went well. We also know that she will not hesitate to identify blind spots in our thinking and/or our communication.
In short, it’s a powerful quartet, with a credible chance of a podium or even victory. Victory in the Resolute Cup would qualify Storm Trysail Club for the 2023 Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, a Corinthian challenge the club will eagerly take on, even if it has no clubhouse in which to display trophies.
“Storm Trysail is very happy to participate in the Resolute Cup,” says Cesare. “The club came close to qualifying for the ‘Big Dance’ a few times, and we are 100% behind our team this year.”