It has been an exciting fall season for Keen Butcher ’18, who has sailed in a singlehanded boat for Penn nearly every one of the last 5 weekends. After just missing out on qualifying for the Carl Van Duyne on his first weekend at KP’s Laser North regatta, Keen was able to power through and make it into the championship via the “second chance” qualifier hosted by Navy two weeks later.
Going up against the top singlehanded sailors in MAISA is no easy task – most who follow college sailing closely agree that MAISA is the toughest district in the nation for singlehanded sailing. Keen would be competing for one of four coveted Nationals berths against multiple sailors who were named All-MAISA last year, not to mention last year’s national champ from Georgetown, Greg Martinez.
So on Penn’s Fall Break weekend, Keen went back to the Naval Academy once again to test his skills against the best Laser sailors in MAISA. The first day was cold and wet, while the second was cold but sunnier. The breeze was not too strong, but was enough for the Midshipmen to run the full rotation of 14 races. After all was said and done, Keen finished 12th out of the 18 boat fleet – a solid performance for the freshman from Houston, TX.
While Keen’s Laser season is over, he hopes to sail some more doublehanded events in the fall and looks to return to the Van Duyne next year to try again for a shot at Singlehanded Nationals.
Scores can be found at: scores.collegesailing.org/f14/carl-van-duyne-maisa-men-singles