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Stanford Beats Cal, in Sailing, That Is

Although the breeze was light, competition was intense at yesterday’s Big Sail.

© Chris Ray

Although Cal Berkeley’s Golden Bears may be favored over the Stanford Cardinal in the so-called ‘Big Game’ this Saturday, both Stanford’s varsity and alumni sailors triumphed over Cal in yesterday’s J/105 match racing in the Central Bay.

“Smile!” On-the-water rivals strike a pose at the StFYC awards ceremony.

© Chris Ray

With light winds blowing out of the north, each school’s varsity team faced off in three buoy races (Cal: 0,1,0; Stanford: 1,0,1), while their Young Alums and Masters did battle in one heat each, with Stanford alums winning both.

These days, many sports commentators question the contemporary significance of the Big Game, as one side or the other almost always dominates and the result is rarely pivotal in the run-up to league championships. But none of that diminishes the enthusiasm for the Big Sail among those students and alums with a passion for sailing. For them, this little-publicized contest is a high point of the winter season, and we’d bet it will endure for many years to come.

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