FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Marlieke Eaton, 757-333-0823 or MarliekeEaton@ussailing.org
US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics Member Paige Railey
Wins Laser Radial European Championship
Portsmouth, R.I. (July 16, 2009) – Paige Railey (Clearwater, Fla.) might only be 22 years old, but she already has countless sailing titles to her name. Today, the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) member has added yet another title to her resume by winning the European Laser Radial Women’s Championship in Charlottenlund, Denmark. The European Championship is considered to be one of the most important Laser Radial regattas (alongside the World Championship and the World Cup series) and this win indicates that Railey is ready for the tough competition she will face at the World Laser Radial Championship later on this month in Japan (July 25-August 2 in Karatsu).
“I am ecstatic,” said Railey moments after coming off the water after the final race. “The weather for this regatta was extremely difficult to sail in with all different types conditions. It has been a huge learning event for me and I’m very pumped to have won.”
Said coach Caroline Brisebois about Railey’s performance, “Paige has done a great job keeping her head cool and being level-headed all week. These were the most difficult sailing conditions we’ve seen in quite some time and Paige did terrific.”
Going into the regatta, Railey knew that sailing consistently would be a key to winning. The University of South Florida senior was able to maintain consistent top- ten results in the first six races of the regatta. That changed in the seventh race, which was sailed yesterday.
Said Railey, “I finished 45th in yesterday’s first race and that was difficult but I knew that it would just have to be my drop race. I then finished the next race in third place. Today, I finished the first race of the day in 20th place because there was a huge wind shift during the race and all the girls who had been behind me caught up with me and passed me. At that point, we had just one more race to go and I had to tell myself that the game was not done yet.”
Demonstrating her persistence and talent, Railey went on to win the final race and the regatta.
Railey’s win at the European Championship is yet further proof that the Olympic Laser Radial class continues to be dominated by sailors from the USA at all levels. Railey and her USSTAG teammate Anna Tunnicliffe (Plantation, Fla.) have had outstanding results in the past year. Out of the six International Sailing Federation World Cup events sailed this season, Railey and Tunnicliffe have won five of them. Railey is currently ranked third in the World Cup rankings, Tunnicliffe is ranked first. At the youth level, Team USA has shown a similar dominance; at the European Youth Championship last week, U.S. sailors finished second, third, and fourth.
For complete results and daily reports from the European Laser Radial Women’s Championship, please visit http://events.laserinternational.org/en/events/overview/100z28.
Several other U.S. sailors competed in the European Championship: USSTAG member Emily Billing (Clearwater, Fla.) finished 45th overall and US Sailing Team – Under 23 members Claire Dennis (Saratoga, Calif.) and Sarah Lihan (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) finished 31st and 28th respectively.
About the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics
The US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) is managed by the United States Sailing Association (US SAILING), the national governing body for the sport of sailing and sailboat racing. The top three boats in each Olympic and Paralympic class are selected annually to be members of the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics. US SAILING supports these elite athletes with funding, coaching and training. The title sponsor of the team is AlphaGraphics; other sponsors include Rolex, Atlantis WeatherGear, Sperry Top-Sider, LaserPerformance, Harken, Team McLube, Bow Down Training, and New England Ropes. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, US SAILING is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. US SAILING offers training and education programs for instructors and race officials, supports a wide range of sailing organizations and communities, issues offshore rating certificates, and provides administration and oversight of competitive sailing across the country. For more information about US SAILING, please visit: www.ussailing.org. For more information about the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics, please visit: http://sailingteams.ussailing.org.