The Mubadala Abu Dhabi Sail Grand Prix presented by the Abu Dhabi Sports Council is the second event for the United States SailGP Team Driver Taylor Canfield and the newly acquired American team, which today announced the addition of Head Athletic Trainer Craig McFarlane and Ben Bardwell as grinder.
“I’m really happy with our progress,” said Canfield today after practice racing. To help counter the light winds, the 10-strong fleet raced with four athletes on board instead of the usual six, and the 29-meter wing (95-foot) – the largest wingsail configuration in SailGP, designed to provide additional power in the light-air conditions.
“We sailed well today to consistently be fighting for the top spots – we capitalized on a few opportunities to overtake, and played good defense when we needed to,” he said. “The whole team did an awesome job communicating the info we needed when we needed it. To me, it really shows that when we’re on point and doing our jobs well, we’re in the mix.”
Abu Dhabi roster
With 2024 an Olympics year and cross-over athletes on the team roster, a few of the active and reserve team members are not onsite in Abu Dhabi. This weekend’s active roster includes: Taylor Canfield, driver; Victor Diaz de Leon, wing trimmer; Leo Takahashi, flight control; Sara Stone, strategist/grinder; and Ben Bardwell, Peter Kinney and Alex Sinclair as grinders.
Craig McFarlane joins as Head Athletic Trainer
McFarlane has 23 years of training experience of performance coaching in sailing, triathlon and rugby athletes. His America’s Cup and SailGP experience lends itself to a unique perspective, recognizing the specialized physical and mental requirements for these elite on-water athletes and the challenges they face in lack of centralized training facilities.
McFarlane is onsite with the team in Abu Dhabi, working in concert with Head Coach Mark Ivey.
How to watch this weekend
U.S. fans can check out the action live on SailGP’s YouTube channel and CBS Sports, beginning at 5 a.m. EDT Saturday and Sunday. Replays available immediately following via YouTube.