Practicing at the Christchurch School in Virginia (2019)

Who can join the team?

Any student eligible to be enrolled at New Trier High School can try out for the team.

High school sailing is a co-ed sport. Boys and girls practice and compete together. 

I want to learn how to sail.  Should I try out?

Probably not.  The New Trier Sailing team is not a learn-to-sail program, but a learn-to-race program.  Sailors who are trying out for the team will have a better chance of being named to the team if they have prior sailing and/or racing experience.

Is sailing a school-sponsored sport?

No.  The New Trier Sailing team is not run by New Trier High School.  It is a separate not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization governed by its own board of directors.

Is the team “no-cut”?

Generally, no. Due to the limited number of boats available to the team, the roster is capped at approximately 35 sailors.  Due to variation in the number and experience of the sailors graduating and trying out each year, sometimes the coaches are forced to make cuts after tryouts.

Where does the team sail?

The team practices at Chicago Yacht Club at Belmont Harbor in Chicago.  Competitions (regattas) are held locally, throughout the Midwest, and also nationally.

Why does the team sail out of Belmont?

The Chicago Yacht Club provides the facility, boats and coaches for the New Trier Sailing team as part of its high school sailing program

CYC’s Belmont Station is the safest sailboat launch in the Chicago area and the facility was specifically constructed to accommodate sailing instruction.  CYC maintains its fleet of boats in top shape.  All CYC coaches are US Sailing certified instructors, and they are also trained in CPR.  CYC provides insurance for on-the-water activities (practices and regattas) associated with high school team sailing.

How do I get to practice?

Round-trip bus transportation is provided for Monday-Thursday practices from the NTHS Winnetka campus.  Freshman sailors take the NT shuttle bus from the Northfield campus to the Winnetka campus to meet the bus for sailing practice.  All sailors are required to take the bus when available.  The bus usually arrives back at the Winnetka campus by 8pm.  Varsity sailors arrange their own sailor-driven carpools for Friday practices.

When is the high school sailing season?

High school sailing is a two-season sport.  Tryouts for both seasons are held prior to the fall season. The fall season runs from late August until mid-November.  The spring season runs from early March through the end of May.  Sailors are expected to sail both seasons.

How often do the teams practice and compete?

Varsity: Mandatory practices 4-7pm on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays.  Regattas (local, midwest, and national) are held on many weekends and are typically day long events on both Saturday and Sunday.  Some, but not all, of the Varsity sailors will be rostered for each regatta. 

Junior Varsity: Mandatory practices 4-7pm on Mondays and Wednesdays.  Regattas (local and Midwest) are held on many weekends and are typically day long events on both Saturday and Sunday.  Some, but not all, of the Junior Varsity sailors will be rostered for each regatta. 

Are sailors subject to a Code of Conduct?

Yes. They are subject to both the New Trier Sailing Code of Conduct and the Chicago Yacht Club Code of Conduct.

What supervision is provided for sailors at regattas and what are the travel arrangements for out of town regattas?

Parent volunteer chaperones supervise the sailors at all regattas (local and out of town).  Parent volunteer chaperones are also responsible for driving sailors to out of town regattas and for supervising them while out of town.  Lodging for chaperones and sailors is sometimes provided by a local host family (likewise, New Trier Sailing families provide lodging for out of town sailors during CYC hosted regattas).  Occasionally, chaperones and sailors will stay at hotels.   Travel to national regattas can require airline travel and sailors and chaperones fly together on the same flight and stay together in approved lodging.

Does the team provide equipment?

No.  Sailors must provide their own equipment, which includes a Type III PFD (lifejacket), spray gear, a drysuit (recommended and sometimes required for late fall; required for spring) and other items. Please refer to the Gear page for more detailed information.

Do I need to buy a boat?

No. At practice and at home regattas the team sails on 420s provided by the Chicago Yacht Club.  Host schools provide the boats for away regattas.

One exception is a small number of sailors who compete in Lasers, which are individually owned.

What is the governing body for high school sailing?

High school sailing is sanctioned at the national level by the Inter-Scholastic Sailing Association (ISSA) (www.hssailing.org), and the New Trier Sailing team is a member of ISSA’s Midwest district (MISSA) (www.missa.hssailing.org).