ORIENTAL, NC (April 1-2, 2017): Saturday, April 1st, competitive college sailing returns in full force to Oriental, North Carolina with the 2017 SailPack Oriental Intercollegiate Regatta! This two-day regatta will feature 18 college sailing teams (including 4 from North Carolina) from New York to Florida with over 100 college sailors and coaches. This will be the largest collegiate one-design regatta ever held in the state of North Carolina.
The 2017 SailPack Oriental Intercollegiate Regatta is hosted by NC State University in Oriental, NC, and is a two-day competitive event on the waters of the Neuse River. The 2017 regatta marks an important milestone for the SailPack Oriental event as it is the first year that the regatta is an official interconference event recognized by the Intecollegiate Sailing Association (ICSA), the governing body of college sailing. After the first two years of hosting this event as a promotional regatta, berths in this spring's version were offered to teams from several national sailing conferences during their official spring draft. Teams participating include: NC State University, Jacksonville University Sailing Team, FSU Sailing Club, UNC-Wilmington Sailing Team, UNC-Chapel Hill, William and Mary Sailing, University of Maryland Sailing Team, Sailing Club at Virginia Tech, Drexel Sailing Team, Syracuse U Sailing Team, Univ. Maryland - Balt. Co. Sailing, Georgia Tech Sailing Club, USC Gamecocks Sailing, Stony Brook University,Washington College Sailing, Duke Sailing, and the University of Georgia!
"We are excited to go back to Oriental and race this spring. This year's regatta has seen more interest than any of our past events and we're expecting fierce competition on the water," said Oriental native and NC State Sailing team captain Kara Wheeler.
Teams will launch from Bow-to-Stern Boating Center and racing will take place within view of Lumac Park. There will be on-water and on-shore viewing opportunities. Racing is set to commence shortly after the skippers' meeting at 9:30 AM on Saturday and will continue until late afternoon. Sunday racing will begin on a similar schedule with the last races being started no later than 2:30 PM. Live scoring of the event will be online at http://bit.ly/2017RegattaScores.
"We are excited to bring so many fellow college sailing teams to Oriental to race with us. We consider Oriental to be our primary training location and the coastal home of NC State Sailing," said NC State Sailing volunteer head coach Dana Magliola. "The hospitality in Oriental and Pamlico County is unmatched, and the legacy of sailing in this community is legendary."
Sailing isn’t the only thing on the agenda for the weekend either. On Saturday night, April 1st, regatta participants and supporters will enjoy a celebration pig pickin’ at the Red Rooster in Oriental. Participants and sponsors will be provided with free admission while others interested will be provided admission for a small fee to help offset the cost of the event. Admission bracelets for this event are available for purchase at Nautical Wheelers, The Silos Restaurant in Oriental, and other locations across Pamlico County including the Pamlico Chamber of Commerce. T-Shirts for the event will also be for sale at Nautical Wheelers in Oriental.
College sailing teams traveling to North Carolina for this event are also excited about the regatta. “Of all the places that sailing has taken me over the past 40 years, Oriental is my favorite. NC State has worked so hard to make this regatta happen. Their excitement and passion for this event is infectious, and has spread as far away as Florida and New York,” said Jacksonville University head coach Jon Faudree. “I'm thrilled to introduce my young sailors to the waters of Oriental and give them the opportunity to sail against great competition in an exciting regatta.”
SUNY Stony Brook head coach Geoff Loffredo said, "We are very excited to compete in the Sailpack Oriental Intercollegiate regatta. We're looking forward to sailing against many teams from outside of our conference that we have not competed against before. We have also heard great things about Oriental in terms of hospitality and passion for sailing, so we are very happy to be able to experience it all this year."
A focus on sustainability is another key facet of the 2017 SailPack Oriental Intercollegiate Regatta. Organizers have taken extra steps to reduce the environmental impact of the regatta, while also using the opportunity to educate participants and spectators about sustainable practices in sailing. These considerations range from restricting disposable water bottles, to providing composting and recycling for participants at both the regatta and BBQ event, to hosting a table with educational resources about sustainability, as well as many other activities around sustainability. The event itself has been certified as a Champion-level sustainable event in partnership with NC State University Sustainability, and also as an official “Clean Regatta” with Sailors for the Sea, the Newport, Rhode Island-based non-profit organization which provides the world’s only sustainability certification for water-based events. “Care for the environment is a natural fit with sailing, but it’s especially important when we host an event to reinforce our commitment to sustainability,” said former NC State team captain and regatta Green Team co-captain Matthew Dockstader. “As a team, we are all committed to this effort and it’s great to work with organizations like Sailors for the Sea and NC State University Sustainability.”
Together with the NC State sailing organization, support from the community in Oriental and all of Pamlico County has been integral to hosting this event. "From our sponsors at First Citizens' Bank, Pamlico Coastal Activities Council, Tideland EMC, and many local businesses and individuals, we have seen such generosity that it's just overwhelming," said Magliola. "The support of the community is what makes this regatta possible."
For more information about the event or NC State Sailing, visit: go.ncsu.edu/Sailing or contact Dana Magliola at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 919.946.5445. PDF of press release attached for publication or distribution as needed. A boat for media will be provided. Please RSVP if you want to reserve space for your reporter/photographers. High resolution images for media use are available here: http://www.sailpack.org/images_for_media.