Big Blue Sailing Academy

2019 Schedule coming soon!

2018 Elite Laser Training Program at ODU

Purpose: Provide professional instruction, race training, and coaching in Laser and Laser Radial classes for dedicated and experienced youth sailors in the Chesapeake Bay region utilizing the facilities and expertise of the Old Dominion University Sailing program.  The program will be conducted and managed by Big Blue Sailing Academy, LLC.

Curriculum: Our philosophy is to focus on skill development and training. Weekly training will include boat handling, boat speed, sail trim, one design tactics and strategy, video analysis, and age-appropriate conditioning and fitness.  Other topics will include nutrition, event preparation, weather strategy, and mental focus.

Staff: The Program Director and Head Coach will be Mitch Brindley, head coach Old Dominion University. Over 20 years coaching experience at the youth, collegiate, national and international level in a variety of one design class dinghies with extensive experience in Laser and Laser Radials. Some notable athletes coached include: Anna Tunnicliffe (2008 Olympic Gold Medal Laser Radial), Sally Barkow, Brad Funk, US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics Laser Team 2009, Rob Crane, Erika Reineke, Zach Railey (2009 Skandia Sail for Gold – Bronze in the Finn class), and Stephanie Roble. Additionally Brindley has coached and conducted clinics at various US Sailing Junior Championships. Brindley is a US Sailing Level 3 Coach Trainer.


Program Schedule: The normal weekly training schedule will be Tuesday – Friday 9:30 am- 3:30 pm June 19 - Aug. 10. Participants are encouraged to compete on their own in Chesapeake Bay area or Area C regattas representing their respective Yacht Clubs. Additionally, group travel to major events will be coordinated. Click here for the planned regatta schedule.


Facilities: Rigging, launching, and all instruction will take place at the Old Dominion University Sailing Center. Boat storage will be available and limited charters will be available from Old Dominion University. 


Fees: The base fee for the entire 8 week training program is $2000.00. Additional daily regatta coaching fees and travel expenses will apply for the travel group attending events coached by Big Blue Sailing Academy coaches. Fee includes travel training days, but not regatta coaching fees and travel related expenses which will be billed to the regatta participants. If availability exists, participants may register on a weekly basis for $300 per week.

Please note that you may accrue three different types bills during your Elite Sailing:

1. Training fee, either the entire $2000 program or $300 a week

2. Boat or equipment lease fee, usually $100 per week for a boat

3. Individual regatta expenses which include regatta coaching fees and coaching travel expenses (mainly hotel). These regatta expenses are split between the regatta participants and are billed after the event. There will be no additional expenses for local events.


Restrictions: The University and NCAA regulations prohibit limiting the attendance in any way based on skill level.  The only permissible limitations on attendance are number, age, grade level and/or gender.  The target age will be 14-18 with an enrollment of 8-12 athletes.