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Posts Tagged ‘veterans’

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Do you love ‘Merka?  Sign up for the Warrior Sailing newsletter and learn all sorts of cool shit they do for veterans from all over the USA. It’s not just a ‘learn to sail’ program either; participants get plugged into Ralf Steitz and Ben Poucher’s network, including crewing, racing, and delivery options all over the East Coast and beyond.  The video above is from last year, but it deserves some love!

June 8th, 2017 by admin

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Clean Report

Musto and Torqeedo make our European coverage possible this month, please check out their offerings online or at the METS show this week.

At the invitation of onsite project manager Jan Majer, I took a quick side trip yesterday to the industrial wasteland of Burriana, Spain a few hours south of Barcelona.  That’s the home of Longitud Cero – Spain’s top composite boatbuilder and the temporary home of the new Warrior (ex-Camper).  She’s already had all her moving bits stripped off with some modifications scheduled for next week, and will be coming soon to an island regatta near you some time this winter.  You’ll barely recognize her when you see her, but you’ll never forget the new paint job – we discussed this, the bigger modifications to the boat,  the Warrior Sailing Project, and tons of other subjects in ultra-high performance racing with Jan and rigger Ryan Breymaier during a great SA Podcast that will drop next week.  Will the boat originally nicknamed “Clifford” for her doggish ways become one of the fastest monohulls in the world?  Keep an eye here for the podcast…

Special thanks to Bruce Schwab/Ocean Planet Energy and Doyle Sails NZ for their support of our reporting, and a special note to the media team at ISAF World Sailing; while there’s plenty they do poorly, their live streaming of the important Annual Conference is solid and well-considered, and it allowed me to take a side trip to a cool spot rather than sitting in my ass in a meeting all day.  If you have a reason to care about the governance of the Olympics and the sport itself, there’s hours and hours of occasionally useful information in the videos here.

Title shout to one of the pioneers of hard core and an appropriate song for all Americans this week.

November 12th, 2016 by admin

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Miami  to Havanna RaceThere are a few folks who truly stand out for their thankless, difficult work trying to build a future for this sport we love so much, and Ben Poucher is one of the most noteworthy.  He sends us the latest from the WARRIOR SAILING PROGRAM to try to get your support, and to remind everyone that the WSP has nothing to do with the scandalized Wounded Warrior organization – with Ben, your money actually goes to the veterans!  If you hate reading, just go and watch this great video about WSP.  Thanks to Marco Oquendo for the shot of the program-owned Trebuchet in Havana Harbor.

People who read the SA front page consistently might notice the name Ralf Steitz or USMMA Sailing Foundation on occasion – usually they’re getting some love for their efforts in supporting youth sailing initiatives.    But do people ACTUALLY know what they do for sailing?  I doubt it.  Not only does Ralf continue to support cadets at King’s Point and youth programs like 13Fifty Racing, but he has also committed to making Warrior Sailing Program a sustainable success story.  With over 120 graduated wounded veterans through the Basic Training Camps to date, the Warrior Sailing Program is expanding its horizons and challenging its graduates to new sailing adventures!  New initiatives for advanced training, offshore sailing opportunities, and able bodied regattas are all on the upcoming schedule.  WSP is the lead sailing program in adaptive sailing opportunities for wounded members of the armed services.

So what, exactly, is WSP about?  The Warrior Sailing Team is comprised of graduates from the training camps that are ambitious to race at a competitive level.  The WS Team will be competing in able-bodied and disabled body events through the spring/summer 2016. The first in a series of inshore training regattas for 2016 is Charleston Race Week.  The team’s season will continue with monthly regatta or training events and will culminate this August in Kingston, Ontario for the J22 WORLDS !

IMG_0254In addition to supporting Warriors on the J22 race circle during Charleston Race Week, Ralf and The Sailing Foundation are also offering their newest donated sailing vessel as an awesome platform for pursuit racing during the Charleston eent.  The 84 foot ‘Metolius’ will be a sight to see with Warriors taking their new skills aboard from April 14-17.  To add another event to the already busy April schedule, The Sailing Foundation is sending Kings Point Cadets along with youth sailors offshore onboard the Foundation Reichel/Pugh 69 Trebuchet in the Palm Beach To Charleston Race  April 8th.

The USMMA Sailing Foundation is taking the lead and needs your help to keep these initiatives and opportunities for youth and warriors!  Send your support to Warrior Sailing and go to the WARRIOR CAMPAIGN fundraising efforts, or go to the website to see how you can get involved!

If you see us in Charleston, please come introduce yourself!  Our top priority is to make the men and women who graduate from WSP camps feel welcome and included in the sailing community.  We all owe these warrior sailors a sincere ‘thank you’ for their service and sacrifice. Support Warrior Sailing, not other initiatives that don’t directly impact those that need it the most.

-Ben ‘Pooch’ Poucher, Director

Warrior Sailing Program


April 3rd, 2016 by admin

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On this Veteran’s Day, Sailing Anarchy salutes every vet for their service and bravery.  A single look at the world news tells us that freedom ain’t free, and it’s often paid for in blood.  To thank and honor all vets, we turn it over to longtime SA’er Ben Poucher, Program Director for Warrior Sailing.  

Hey SAers!

We’re happy to bring Sailing Anarchists a Veteran’s Day update for the Warrior Sailing Program, where we graduated 27 new sailors from another successful Basic Training camp in St. Pete just this past week!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALifelong sailing cheerleader Ralf Steitz and the USMMA Sailing Foundation are once again leading the charge in the introduction and continuing development of new sailors in the United States.  The foundation’s newest program, Warrior Sailing, is introducing visibly and non-visibly injured men and women of the armed services to the sport of sailing.  Including last week’s Basic Training Camp hosted by the St. Pete Sailing Center, The Warrior Sailing Program has graduated over 165 wounded warrior sailors since starting in 2013!

The WSP consists of a staged developmental progress that begins with Basic Training.

1. The Basic Training camp is a 3-day learn-to-sail and race opportunity. The camps provide professional coaches onboard each boat, adaptive sailing equipment, sails, accommodations, travel expenses, meals, and FUN!

2. The next level is Advanced Training camp for graduates of the BTC.  These camps will begin in 2016 at various locations throughout the US (TBD).  The Advanced camps will develop advanced racing techniques and sailing skills.  Please let us know if your club is interested in hosting an Advanced Camp and helping us raise funds for a sustainable future. 

3. The final level is to qualify for a spot on the Warrior Sailing Team.  The team travels to regattas throughout the United States to compete under the Warrior Sailing flag.  These individuals compete in both adaptive sailing and open sailing regattas like Charleston Race Week.

If you are a wounded, ill, or injured veteran or active military person that wants to get involved, go to our website and sign up for Basic Training!

Keep up with our team and program at our Facebook page.

-Ben Poucher

November 11th, 2015 by admin

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Our apologies for missing Veterans’ Day by a few, but big props to Ben Poucher and the USMMA Sailing Foundation for continuing to do great things with sailboats for our American servicemen.  Pooch checks in below.

The Warrior Sailing program was created in 2013 through a partnership between US Sailing and The USMMA Sailing Foundation.  Additional support has come from the adaptive sailing community and local sailing clubs like St. Pete Sailing Center, Chicago Yacht Club, and Texas Corinthian Yacht Club (to name a few).  All of these groups working together have successfully provided opportunities to veterans to learn the sport of sailing.  Warrior Sailing has organized multiple 3-day intense camps, where veterans learn from professional coaches the basics of sailing and racing.  From these camps individuals that want to pursue the sport have come forward and asked us to keep coaching them and the natural progression was to develop a ‘core team’.  With additional support from the Foundation and continuing hard work from the ‘core team’, we attended the National Disabled Championships in Galveston in late October.  Our two military rookie teams showed tremendous amounts of dedication to training and learning the sport throughout the summer and fall seasons.  With the help of legendary coach and program co-director Lee Icyda, this group won Nationals with one entry, our second entry taking 5th.  Pretty amazing for only having 7 months of sailing experience! It was a humbling experience for the coaches and all of the support staff.

We’re happy to announce that we have been granted an adaptive sports grant from the Veterans Administration for 2015 – the first such grant awarded to the famous USMMA Sailing foundation run by everyone’s favorite smiling German, Ralfie Steitz. This grant sets a solid base of monetary support for 2015, but we are still in need of additional support!

Our team of directors, coaches, advisors, and strategic partners look forward to the furthering development of The Warrior Sailing Program 3-day open camps for 2015.  We are also excited about the upcoming traveling ‘core team’ of wounded vets coming to a sailing venue near you!  If you like this kind of thing, please head over to our Facebook Page and like us, and stay tuned for schedules and planning for the upcoming season!

If you are interested in helping support these deserving individuals, or you are a veteran that wants to get involved, please go to our website and send me an inquiry.  If you are feeling particularly generous and want to donate directly to our cause, please go to this link and donate a gift to the warrior sailing program though the USMMA sailing foundation website. www.usmmasailingfoundation.org



November 13th, 2014 by admin