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Island sailor places high at nationals
NEWPORT, R.I. - Bainbridge High School sophomore Blake Bentzen traveled to Newport, R.I., and placed in the top 10 in both of the races at the annual Interscholastic Sailing Association High School Singlehanded Championship the weekend of Nov. 1.
Bentzen, the 2013 North West Interscholastic Sailing Association Singlehanded Radial Champion, competed against district champions from around the country and in adverse weather conditions to take sixth place in his best race on Saturday, Nov. 2.
The race was initially delayed several hours due to a lack of wind. Later in the day, strong tides and light wind made for extremely challenging conditions.
On the next day, conditions reversed. Winds gusted up to 25 knots and temperatures dropped quickly to the mid 30s. Bentzen persevered and placed ninth in his best race of the day.
The experience was very educational, according to Bentzen. He enjoyed exploring Newport and eating the lobster there. He hopes to qualify again for next year’s tournament, which is slated to take place in Bellingham.