The Narragansett Bay Adult Athletic Sailing Association (NAASA) is now accepting applications for scholarships for the 2023 F18 League season and signups for clinics to create more opportunities for sailors in getting into high-performance sailing. Now in the third year, NAASA Scholarships provide fully funded F18 Catamarans for the NAASA F18 League including summer storage at Sail Newport, entry fees, and coaching. The clinics will be offered on Friday evenings and are designed to introduce athletic sailors to fast sailing and the F18 platform.
Both are open to any eligible sailors with a strong background and passion for the sport. For the Scholarships, the venue for NAASA F18 League racing is Newport, RI - so applicants must be able to get themselves to Sail Newport for all league events. Anyone over 18 is welcome to apply and sailors are selected based on their sailing resume, athletic accomplishment, character, and ability to be an ambassador for the sport.
The venue for NAASA F18 League racing is Newport, RI - so applicants must be able to get themselves to Sail Newport for all league events. Anyone over 18 is welcome to apply and sailors are selected based on their sailing resume, athletic accomplishment, character, and ability to be an ambassador for the sport. Full teams or individual athletes are encouraged to apply via SailNAASA.org/apply.
In 2022, NAASA awarded two boats to four sailors who took part in the full season. Now in 2023, the two boats are once again available. The F18 League scores boats and allows for sailor substitutions. Scholarship boats are expected to sail all F18 League races. In recognition that sailors have schedule conflicts, NAASA is encouraging teams of 3 or 4 to apply for a scholarship with substitutions in mind. 2 person teams and individuals are also encouraged to apply as NAASA will connect sailors with teams.
"We want to create the missing pathway into athletic sailing," says Chris Bulger, President, and Founder of NAASA. "Only two years into this program, we have already seen sailors get introduced to fast sailing thru NAASA and then move on to the Olympic squad and to the Youth and Women’s America’s Cup teams. We are eager to broaden the on-ramp so have expanded our scholarship program and will be offering free F18 Clinics."
For the clinics, sailors should fill out an interest form so organizers can schedule the sessions based on availability. NAASA does require, if accepted, all sailors join NAASA to help cover a portion of the costs. Membership is $50. Sign up at SailNAASA.org/clinics.
Free F18 clinics are new for 2023 and as Bulger reports “We have found that in one or two outings we can turn a 420 sailor into an F18 sailor who is capable of racing in the F18 League.” NAASA will host F18 Clinics every Friday (4 pm-Sunset) starting June 1st and running all summer out of Sail Newport.
"Whether you are a college student, a recent grad, or working in the marine trade – it’s hard to get a ride on these fast cats and even harder to imagine funding your own program” adds Bulger. " The scholarships, clinics and the whole league is structured to make this type of sailing as accessible as possible to as many sailors as possible. If you are a dedicated athlete – we want to remove the barriers and get you running your own high-performance program."
Founded in 2021 by a group of F18 sailors, NAASA is dedicated to growing participation in competitive high-performance sailing The organization’s core activity is the NAASA F18 League - which is 13 days of F18 racing sailed on Narragansett Bay in the Summer.
The application period is open until March 1, 2023 with interviews in March and the final winners will be announced in April. The application and more information can be found at SailNAASA.org/apply.