The Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA) has announced that sailing retailer Layline Inc. will sponsor its spring team racing championship from 2004 through 2007.
Headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina, Layline was founded by Walt Brown in 1986 when he was racing Lightnings and could not readily find cool new parts and tricks. The business grew from the shed in his backyard into a mail-order catalogue and now includes an online sailing superstore.
"Lots of people who become avid sailors are introduced to sailing in college,"
said Layline President Walt BROWN. He hopes that college racers will "take a non-sailing buddy sailing"
and believes that those in the sailing business have a responsibility to advance the sport, something he hopes to do through Layline's sponsorship of the team racing championship.
College sailing has grown from its beginnings in the 1890s as an informal club sport, into a co-educational sport with approximately 200 active colleges participating. Racing now occurs every weekend during the fall and spring and on numerous weekends through the winter. Ever increasing numbers of sailors - both professional and Olympic calibre - have honed their skills on the college racing circuit.
"We are very excited to have Layline come onboard with our existing corporate sponsors -- Gill North America, Quantum Sails, Ronstan International and Vanguard Sailboats - in support of ICSA events,"
said ICSA President Mitch BRINDLEY (Norfolk, Va.). "It is a good mix for ICSA to have the support of a major retailer, and we are pleased to be affiliated with companies who recognize the importance of college sailing as opening the door to the sport."
Schedule of Events: The 2004 spring championships will be hosted by the Northwest Intercollegiate Sailing Association in Cascade Locks, Oregon: the ICSA North American Women's Dinghy Championship from May 26-28; the ICSA/Layline North American Team Race Championship from May 30-June 1; and the ICSA/Gill North American Coed Dinghy Championship from June 2-4. All three events will be sailed in two divisions of FJs.