Fresh and forceful southerly and southwesterly breezes sent the sailors flying around the courses for the final day of the ISAF Grade 1, 2003 BoatU.S. Santa Maria Cup women's international match racing regatta.
The final two flights of the double round-robin were completed in the morning before the semi-final and final rounds were sailed.
Sailing began on Wednesday in this regatta, hosted by Eastport Yacht Club and sailed in J/22's, which has drawn top-ranked female sailors from around the world, including reigning ISAF Women's Match Racing World Champion and 2002 Rolex US Yachtswoman of the Year Liz BAYLIS from San Rafael, California, and a number of Olympic hopefuls with their sights set on Athens next summer, such as past Rolex US Yachtswoman of the Year Betsy ALISON and Carol CRONIN from Rhode Island, Bermuda's Paula LEWIN, Italy's Giulia CONTI, and more.
At the end of the round-robin phase of the competition, Baylis had emerged as the clear leader, with Lewin in second, Conti in third, and Alison fourth. In the best-two-of-three semi final round, Baylis defeated Alison in straight sets, while Lewin bested Conti in a similarly efficient fashion.
Again using a best-two-of-three format, the finals were sailed between Baylis and Lewin, with the victory going to Baylis in two straight races, while the petit finals were contested between Conti and Alison. Alison beat Conti in their two races, moving herself up to third overall in the process.
Sailing with Baylis on Team San Francisco were fellow Californians Aimee Hess and Karina Shelton, and Annapolitan Nancy Haberland. Baylis and her crew seemed unstoppable from the start of the regatta, sweeping the first round-robin 9-0 and going on to add six more wins in the second round-robin.
Lewin's Bermuda-based team included Leatrice ROMAN and Joann JONES, as well as Annapolis sailor Dina KOWALYSHYN. Lewin and her team were the clear victors in the second round-robin, never losing a race in that part of the series, added to a win-loss record of 5-4 in the first half.
Conti's team was made up of Alessandra MARENZI, Angela BARONI, and Giulia MAZZOTTI, and posted an impressive string of victories, going 6-3 in the first round-robin and 7-2 in the second.
Sailing with Suzy LEECH, Lee ICYDA, and Dini HALL, Alison seemed to falter a bit in the first round-robin with four wins and five losses, but came on very strong later in the series to finish the second round-robin 6-3.