The first regionally focused Olympic Development Program (ODP) Training Camp gets underway on Saturday in San Francisco with 40 youth sailors, ages 15-20, from around the country. The notable coach lineup includes Rio medalist Caleb Paine (who recently re-located to San Francisco to begin training for the 2020 Olympics) along with Grant Spanhake, Kevin Hall, David Liebenberg, Dane Wilson, Mark Andrews and Pete Melvin.
Sponsored primarily by the St. Francis Sailing Foundation, the 3-day camp will be held at the St. Francis Yacht Club, with additional support from the Belvedere Cove Foundation. The training camp is part of a high-performance fall training series for ODP team members and the US Youth Worlds team to prepare for the Youth Worlds in December.
Significantly, however, this is the first time that US Sailing has extended participation in its training camps to local regional programs. The goal is to have ODP coaches and sailors work alongside the local sailors and coaches to encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing on both levels. Participants will be on the water from 10-2pm daily, followed by a debrief.
“Due to the success of the 2015 ODP clinic here in San Francisco, we are fortunate to again be selected as the venue for this camp,” Pam Healy, St Francis Sailing Foundation advisor and US Sailing Youth Committee member commented. “Significantly, US Sailing will be holding future developmental clinics in various regions across the US to bring up the regional level of local sailors.”
The skill focus for this camp will be on sailing in heavy weather; the October and November camps will focus on speed and racing, respectively. The following classes will be supported: Laser Radial, i420, 29er, and Nacra15.
Paine, who received significant funding and assistance from the St Francis Sailing Foundation throughout his recent – and successful – Olympic campaign is excited to have the opportunity to coach this weekend. “I am so grateful for all the help I received throughout my campaign and know only too well how important training camps like this are for personal development. Consistency and repetition as well as the opportunity to train with others is key.”
Regional sailors attending the clinic were selected based on high skill level (top 15 finishers, or equivalent skill level, at the class Midwinters, North Americans, or other championship-level events) and heavy weather experience (experience and capability sailing in high breeze -20kts), as well as demonstrated commitment to the sport and a high fitness level.