The results are the real reflection >> Scuttlebutt Sailing News
After finishing eighth out of nine teams, United States SailGP team skipper Jimmy Spithill looks back on the Sailing Grand Prix challenge in Chicago on June 18-19 and insists the team will get the most out of it. difficult times.
One of the best things about sport is that it humbles you, you’re never safe – and at the highest level things can change at any time.
There are no shortcuts or lies about how you go: the results are the true reflection.
When you’re having a good day on the racetrack, there’s no better feeling in the world, but when it’s bad, there’s nothing to hide from. You have to look in the mirror, be honest with yourself, and find a way to use tough times or bad results as learning opportunities.
That’s what we’re doing this week, after a really disappointing result in our return to the T-Mobile USA Sailing Grand Prix in Chicago this weekend.
We have no excuses, but the reality is that we weren’t able to execute clean starts and consistent maneuvers. I’m glad we managed to get a podium finish in the final race to give the fans something to cheer on, but we let a lot of people down on Navy Pier.
And what a huge turnout. Man, the vibe was amazing. We could hear the sound of the water, and it’s probably the closest thing to a sports stadium I’ve seen while sailing. Honestly, these fans deserved a win, and we hope to come back and give them a better performance. It’s a real sports crazy city.
The level of this SailGP fleet continues to rise and the pressure on the course is immense. It’s no coincidence that teams with more reps and hours together tend to be the ones at the top. That said, it’s no longer surprising to see someone win one race and then finish at the back of the pack in the next race. It shows that any team can win.
One thing I won’t do is shoot shots. I’ve learned in my career that sometimes you just have to take your meds and learn the lesson. We’ve built this team on candor and honesty, and we’ll use all of that to go through all the footage and data from last weekend.
These tough times are a great test for top teams: we’ve dug ourselves this hole, and we need to figure out how to get back in the race.
I believe we have the right tools and the right people. We didn’t start Season 3 the way we hoped, but we have to keep working hard and weed out stupid mistakes and mistakes on the water – myself included.
That’s what world-class sport is all about: it’s not supposed to be easy. The whole appeal of racing in this incredible competition is that it’s no picnic. It’s difficult. It’s difficult. No one goes there to lose, and when you do, you’ll lose sleep and question yourself.
There aren’t many top sports where literally any team can win, and any team can finish last. And despite the result for us, Chicago was a huge success for SailGP, with an insane number of fans tuning in and showing up to watch the race.
We’re attracting more and more fans, and we’ve also had some special guests for the Chicago ride, like pro wakeboarder Parks Bonifay and Darnell Mooney of the Chicago Bears.
These guys are serious athletes, and every time they approach the F50 their minds are blown, which shows just how crazy these racing machines are.
For these top performers – and the likes of Kai Lenny and Jamie O’Brien – becoming fans of SailGP gives our sport real credibility. It seems the more we can put this race in front of people, they convert as soon as they experience it. With boats flying at 100 km/h, powered only by the wind, you kind of have to see it to believe it.
Then a trip to the Great Britain Sail Grand Prix – and a return to saltwater sailing. The freshwater race on Lake Michigan was really different for the teams because the foils react differently – it takes more speed to lift, and it’s harder to keep flying when you do.
It’s the first time we’ve raced on a lake since I joined SailGP, and I hope that’s a harbinger. I’m excited about the potential for opening up new places and markets that were previously off limits. I mean, look at the amount of freshwater lakes across Europe and the northern hemisphere.
We might even bring the best sailing in the world to Las Vegas, where some of the toughest heavyweights in the world have taken some big punches and got back on their feet.
Hopefully we can do the same when we head to the UK at the end of July.
1. Australia, 7-2-3-9-1-(1), 33 points
2. Canada, 4-1-1-2-2-(2), 45 points
3. Great Britain, 2-3-2-3-5-(3), 40 points
4. New Zealand, 1-5-4-5-8, 32 points
5. France, 9-8-6-1-4, 27 points
6. Denmark, 3-4-8-6-7, 27 points
7. Spain, 5-6-5-8-6, 25 points
8. USA, 8-9-7-7-3, 21 points
9. Switzerland, 6-7-9-4-9, 20 points
*The Japan SailGP team will be absent from the first events of the season due to a series of external factors which mean that only nine F50s are available for the start of Season 3.
SailGP Info – Chicago Details – Season 3 Scoreboard – Facebook – How to Watch
Ranking of Season 3 (after two events)*
1. Australia, Tom Slingsby – 20 points
2. Canada, Phil Robertson – 17 points
3. Great Britain, Ben Ainslie – 17 points
4. New Zealand, Peter Burling – 12 points
5. Denmark, Nicolai Sehested – 12 points
6. France, Quentin Delapierre – 9 points
7. United States, Jimmy Spithill – 9 points
8. Spain, Jordi Xammar – 8 points
9. Switzerland, Sebastien Schneiter – 4 points
*Japan, Nathan Outteridge: For the events they miss, Japan will receive regatta points based on the average of their regatta points in the first three regattas they enter.
2022-23 SailGP Season 3 Schedule*
May 14-15, 2022 – Bermuda Sailing Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess
June 18-19, 2022 – United States Sailing Grand Prix | Chicago to Navy Pier
30-31 July 2022 – British Sailing Grand Prix | Plymouth
August 18-19, 2022 – ROCKWOOL Danish Sailing Grand Prix | Copenhagen
September 9-10, 2022 – French Sailing Grand Prix | Saint Tropez
September 23-24, 2022 – Spanish Sailing Grand Prix | Andalusia – Cadiz
November 11-12, 2022 – Dubai Sail Grand Prix presented by P&O Marinas
January 14-15, 2023 – Singapore Sailing Grand Prix
18-19 February 2023 – Australian Sailing Grand Prix | sydney
17-18 March 2023 – New Zealand Sailing Grand Prix | christchurch
May 6-7, 2023 – United States Sailing Grand Prix | San Francisco (Season 3 Grand Finals)
Format of SailGP 2022-23 events:
• The teams compete on identical F50 catamarans.
• Each event takes place over two days.
• There are three races each day, totaling six races at each event.
• The first five fleet races involve all teams.
• The final race will pit the top three ranked teams against each other to be crowned event champions and win the biggest share of the $300,000 prize pool to be split among the top three teams.
• The season ends with the Grand Finals, which includes the Final Championship Race – a match-based race where the winner takes it all for the $1 million prize.
For competition documents, click here.
Founded in 2018, SailGP seeks to be an annual global sports league featuring fan-centric inshore racing in some of the world’s iconic ports. Rival national teams compete in identical F50 catamarans for cash prizes as the season culminates in a million dollar match-winning race.