Friday, April 30, 2010
When we last checked in with APS Chesapeake Racer Profile alumnus Bryan Boyd, he was 30 years old, weighed a “wispy” 195 pounds, was training hard to gain mass to compete in the heavyweight, Olympic Finn class, and was headed off to Europe. Last month, we caught up with the soon-to-be 34-year-old, who has gained 20 pounds and launched a full-time Olympic campaign for the 2012 Games in England. The U.S. Sailing Team AlphaGraphics (USSTAG) member is off once again for 10 weeks to compete in the Finn class for the ISAF Sailing World Cup events in Spain, Croatia, Germany, France, Holland, and England.
A native of Panama City, FL, Boyd happened upon an old Flying Scot at the age of 17 and began racing it up and down the Gulf Coast. A relative latecomer to the sport compared to many of his competitors who had a 10-year head start in junior programs, Boyd was undeterred by the
lack of formal background. That he went on to become the captain of the sailing team at the University of Florida, head coach at Severn SA, the North American Finn Class president, and an Olympic hopeful show his drive to lead and win.
Even as he launched and ran a large-scale construction and development business in Annapolis six years ago, Boyd has been honing his sailing skills. One of the top-ranked Finn sailors in the country, he has been a USSTAG member since 2002 and won the Finn National Championships in 2004. This past January, he won the medal race at the 2010 Rolex Miami OCR.
Boyd qualified for the 2010 USSTAG by finishing in the top 20 at three 2009 ISAF Sailing World Cup events—at Palma, Spain (11th), Hyeres, France (13th) and Kiel, Germany (12th). He and his wife Elizabeth Foscue, fellow University of Florida sailing team alum, have put their
construction business “in hibernation” so he can focus on sailing through the 2012 Olympic Games.
The demands of Boyd’s training and regatta schedule will keep him abroad almost continuously through the end of September with the winter months devoted to South Florida training. As part of his team training through USSTAG, Boyd will spend 120 days with a coach this year. “The base level of support on the team has gotten so much better,” he says. “It’s been the biggest game changer for our program.” Although Boyd assures us that racing in Europe has its moments, he says, “It’s a pretty monastic existence. The days are long; you sail, go to the gym, have debriefings, work with coaches, and watch videos. It’s fantastic, yes, but
there’s not a lot of free time.”
As well as a demanding training and travel schedule, Olympic campaigns are expensive. Sails, insurance, and travel expenses add up quickly, and while USSTAG helps with funding, athletes such as Boyd must bridge the gap with private and corporate sponsorships. You may learn more about Boyd’s campaign via his website and blog at bryansail.com. He will keep SpinSheet readers posted on his progress along the Olympic trail.
SpinSheet: What was your most memorable racing moment in 2009?
The first race of the Finn World Championships in Denmark. I had made the decision to be a contender. When I won the first race, that moment cemented my decision to make a go of it full-time.
What would surprise Chesapeake Bay racers about training for Olympic sailing?
What might surprise them is how much of our training is off the water. We spend three hours a day in the gym working with trainers, and our dieticians keep us on a strict diet.
Who are your best sailing buddies these days?
My teammates at USSTAG. The team has really become tightly knit lately. We train together with our own classes and other classes. I just got back from an intense fitness training camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, CO, where we go twice a year. We also sail and train together in Miami.
What’s in your gear bag?
Zhik hiking pants, Atlantis top layers, Aigle boots, Kaenon sunglasses on the water, Sperrys off the water, and garden gloves.
Have you downloaded any new iTunes or seen any live music lately?
We went old school and went to a Depeche Mode concert in Denmark. It was pretty funny as I had to actually tell my younger teammates who this band was. I’ve been listening to flashback music on my iPod: REM, Pearl Jam, and stuff from the early 1990s.
What do you read?
I’m a consumer of pulp fiction: Carl Hiaasen, Janet Evanovich, and whatever falls off my wife’s nightstand.
When it comes to the Olympics, we hear the Parade of Nations is pretty cool...
The opening of the ceremonies of the Olympics will be in London on July 27, 2012. When you pass through the stadium tunnel and walk out, and they light the torch, you are an Olympian forever. That will be the moment. That’s my dream.
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Update: The race marks we're donating to AYC have just arrived and here is Kyle logo-ing them up to be used for the regatta. I wonder how many people are going to hit them this weekend?!
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
The store stock of the new 2010 APS catalogs arrived this afternoon! That also means they've been delivered to the post office and are on their way to your mailbox. If you are coming to town for the Sailing World Circus (aka NOOD) stop in the world leader in One Design, APS, and get an advanced copy.
James makes a good paperweight on top of the new catalogs. Too bad thinking about helping customers in the store isn't actually the same as helping them for real...get back inside James!
In any case, keep your eyes peeled to your mailbox for the newest issue or stop in and see us to get one now.
If you haven't gotten one from us before or ordered anything from us in the past 3 years and would like to request a catalog send an email with your address to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will gladly send one out to you.
Here is a sneak peak of the cover...
Thursday, April 22, 2010
It's Earth Day at APS, and we thought it would be a good day to introduce our newest team member, Bryn, to you by having her do a little write up about her first days here and what she's learning. What follows is her first blog post. As the newest member of the marketing department look for more of posts to be coming from her soon. Welcome aboard Bryn! (Rob)
Ahoy, ahoy...Today is Earth Day and my 4th day at APS. In addition to learning the ropes, literally, I have enjoyed learning about the company culture...like how Green APS is! For instance, one of the first things I noticed was that some, ok a lot, of the APS staff ride their bikes to and from work to do our part in helping out with the environment. As you can see from this picture we took this morning it can be a bit of a race to get to the best spot on the bike rack!
Also, did you know that the APS building was the first building in Eastport to collect 100% of its own storm water by containing the water using downspouts and rainwater drains? The water is collected then filtered naturally under the building in a large containment hold before it feeds into the Bay, which happens to be one block away. Aside from being avid recyclers (lots of blue cans around this place) this is just another way that APS is helping to improve the environment but it doesn't stop there. APS also attempts to carry as many environmentally friendly sailing products we can, too!
The tree grows to 200-250 feet tall! The seed pods are extremely buoyant and water resistant-which is what makes it a great product for life jackets.
The Norge design is very traditional, with plenty of pocket space that is bigger on the inside than they appear.
....and for the ladies, the Women's Abba by Astral, also features the organic material, Kapok. The material allows the vest to conform to the body for a slim profile fit.
Abba has a shorter torso height and features fleece hand warmers for cold days on the water.
Available in Black or Cranberry.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Do I really want to wait until I’m retired to see the world by sail, or do I want to do it now?” That was the question Annapolis sailor Linda Ambrose asked herself when a wonderful opportunity presented itself. She went for it. A native of the Boston area from a non-sailing family, Ambrose started sailing in high school with a boyfriend’s family and knew she loved it right away.
After she had worked in the footwear industry and applied to graduate school, a friend asked her if she’d like to come down to St. Maarten and help out as a chef and mate on a day charter trimaran for awhile. Two weeks led to two more weeks, and then the weeks turned into years. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Ambrose sailed 17,000 nautical miles on yacht charters and deliveries, owned and lived aboard a 37-foot CSY in St. Maarten, sailed across the Atlantic, and lived in the Mediterranean by working in Greece and Turkey on a private yacht for a year. Over the years, she worked as a charter cook, mate, a charter company sales and marketing representative, and a crewed yacht manager. She got her first taste of race committee work helping with the Heineken Regatta.
When she realized it was time to get back to the mainland, Ambrose moved to Ft. Lauderdale, FL,where she started to race in earnest. A few years later, homesick for New England (but not the cold weather), she found her way to Annapolis, which was “a happy medium.” After 17 years in the charter business, her career evolved into regatta/event planning, which made her a good fit for her position of five years as Annapolis YC’s regatta manager.
Of many boats Ambrose has raced on, the one common denominator is that most of them start with a J: the J/105s Blonde Attack, Inigo, and Java; J/80s Dancer and Jammin’, the J/35 Touch of Grey (in Chicago and Northern Michigan); the J/109 Rush; and for the past 10 years, the J/120 Euro Trash Girl. Her racing career runs the full gamut from Wednesday night series to Key West Race Week and from frostbite racing to a memorable win at the Annapolis to Newport Race (class, fleet, and navigator awards on Euro Trash Girl 2005). Of her regatta management work at AYC, Ambrose says, “I’ve learned a lot. I’ve learned what I don’t know.” What’s involved behind the scenes at a big regatta?
“There’s a lot of administrative work to make sure sailors’ information makes its way to the race committee. Their equipment has to be ready. They need to be fed and watered. You have to take care of trophies and functions… and the idea is for it to be seamless for both the racers and the race committee. Sponsorship fulfillment is also high on the list.”