Learning Our Way to Winning

Wednesday, 05 September 2018 00:00

by Carol Cronin

Winning a world championship doesn't come easy in the Snipe class, even though there are three different chances every two years (at least for those of us who qualify for all the possibilities: Open, Masters, and Women's Worlds). It takes dedication and time in the boat to learn all its quirks, because everyone sails the boat a little bit differently. You can't just jump in, copy someone else's settings, and go win a big regatta.

At least I couldn't.

Kim Couranz and I have been sailing the Snipe quite seriously since 2010. For eight years, we've picked the brains of our competitors and tried to incorporate their many ideas into our own sailing style. Here are five of the biggest lessons we learned on the way to this year's victory at the Women's Worlds.


5 Life Lessons from Winning a Worlds

Friday, 24 August 2018 07:15

by Carol Cronin

As a writer and sailor, there are few chances for me to sit back and, well, CROW about a recent accomplishment. But that’s exactly what I’m going to do today, because supercrew Kim Couranz and I just won a World Championship! For those of you who don’t speak sailing, these five lessons do apply to any of life’s challenges—and I promise to go easy on the lingo.

The Snipe Women’s Worlds in Newport included four days of sailing in a wide variety of conditions, just as any world championship should. Sailors have different specialties, and though mine has always been light air we won the event on the final and windiest day because we’ve been working hard to get stronger and faster in big breeze. Lesson #1: Work on your weaknesses.


Women's Snipe World Championship - Final

Monday, 20 August 2018 07:49

Newport, RI, August 19, 2018

(Photo courtesy of Matthew Cohen)

Down to the Wire

The title for the championship came down to the wire. Only one race was planned for the final day and there was only a three point spread between the Norwegian team, Americans Cronin and Couranz, and the Portuguese-American team of Pires de Lima and Tocke. The Norwegians lead going into today, but with more breeze forecasted, bets were on the American and Portuguese boats who were gunning for one more race in breeze.


Colonial Cup

Monday, 04 June 2018 07:24

Annapolis, June 3, 2018

Report by Kim Couranz

26 Snipes descended on Annapolis, Maryland, for the annual Colonial Cup Regatta hosted by Severn Sailing Association. As always, it featured fun both on and off the water with sailors from up and down the East Coast of the United States. 

A few days before the regatta, the weather forecast for Saturday was grim: heavy thunderstorms and no wind. Thankfully, that forecast did not hold, and sailors enjoyed four races on the Chesapeake Bay in light wind. Competitors had to choose best routes to take advantage of wind and had to consider outgoing current, which was stronger on the righthand side of the course. The fourth race proved especially challenging as the breeze shut off during the final beat. But cloud cover and the threat of rain kept Annapolis's famous powerboat fleet ashore, and with flat water, Snipes kept sailing upwind!


Snipe Rigging 101

Tuesday, 17 April 2018 23:14

By Carol Cronin

A recent question from the fleet forming in Costa Rica made me realize: we don't have any stories that explain how to get started rigging a Snipe. So I offered to write one, and because I keep my promises... well, here we are.
Most of SnipeToday's stories speak to the folks who already know the basics and want to learn the tweaking secrets of those whose transom they are eyeing around the race course. This article is not for those people. The point is to begin at the beginning, with a bare deck, and try to cover the most important aspects of rigging a Snipe.


Snipe Maintenance: Little Things Matter

Friday, 09 March 2018 15:33

by Carol Cronin

The first day of this year’s Comodoro Rasco was a glorious Biscayne Bay northeast hiking breeze. On the second beat of the second race, Kim and I were sailing upwind, still getting used to the feel of our new ride, trying to think big and keep hiking hard—when a loud bang from the back of the boat reminded us that sh#thappens in sailboats when we least expect it. (First day in the new boat? Why yes as a matter of fact.)

I looked aft, not knowing what to expect (there’s not much structural stuff back there), and soon spotted the outhaul block standing upright; it should’ve been happily lying down against the top of the boom, out of sight and out of mind. But the aft rivet had pulled out, allowing the block to lift up with the outhaul line.


Last year my Snipe traveled more than 10,000 road miles on its Frankentrailer, taking me to sailing adventures in Florida, San Diego, and Iowa—as well as to several local regattas in the northeast US. Since packing up after an event is definitely not the fun part, Kim and I have developed a system that saves us time and effort. Here are six tips that will hopefully make your next road trip more about the sailing and less about the loading and unloading.

Listen To Your Teammate

Thursday, 15 February 2018 17:15

Story by Carol Cronin

(Photo courtesy Ted Morgan)

At a recent Snipe regatta, Kim Couranz and I counted up the number of lines we each control. Her total? Sixteen (eight on port tack, eight on starboard). My total?


Giving Kim all the controls except the mainsheet allows me to concentrate on steering and trimming without distraction. Of course, that means I trust her completely. So why is it still so hard to listen to her excellent advice about what to do next on the race course?


Why Sail A Snipe?

Thursday, 15 December 2011 20:49

This article was originally published in the Snipe Bulletin, March 1995, but it still holds true today.

by Carol Cronin

Pick up any recent sailing magazine and it will remind you how many racy new one-design options there are for today's recreational races. What, then, keeps such a large group of sailors from all levels addicted to the sixty-two year old Snipe?

Minneford Trophy

Wednesday, 22 November 2017 07:29

Carol Cronin wins Minneford Trophy for 2017. Women dominated the Minneford this year taking top skipper (Carol Cronin) & crew (Nikki Bruno).

... full results ...