Sailing - Varsity
Portsmouth Abbey School sails in the highly competitive New England Schools Sailing Association (NESSA), representing the New England district of the nationwide Interscholastic Sailing Association (ISSA). Portsmouth Abbey competes against such nationally ranked teams as St. George's School, Tabor Academy, Milton Academy and The Hotchkiss School, as well as numerous other private and public schools, including Moses Brown, Bishop Hendricken, Barnstable High School and Dartmouth High School.
The sailing team at Portsmouth Abbey encourages students to reach their potential both in the classroom and on the water. Sailors are challenged to become better boat handlers, improve their tactical knowledge and learn how to sail as a member of a team. The sailing Ravens utilize the School's fleet of twelve 420s for practice on Narragansett Bay, honing skills in boat handling, starts and mark roundings as well as team-race and fleet-race specific drills. Off the water, sailors participate in discussions of rules, fleet management, tactics and team race scenarios. The Portsmouth Abbey School Sailing Team coaching staff believes that by providing highly focused, personalized attention on the water and high-intensity repetitions of fundamental skill sets sailors will improve both individually and as a team. The coaches also encourage players to take advantage of the weight room and other fitness facilities on campus to develop their overall athleticism during non-sailing days. The program fosters a healthy respect for coaches, race committees, other competitors and the sport of sailing itself. Previous sailing experience is required.
Recent graduates of the Portsmouth Abbey School Sailing Team have gone on to sail collegiately at notable schools including Brown University, Connecticut College, Villanova University, Dartmouth College, Hobart & William Smith Colleges, St. Mary's College, Georgetown University, College of Charleston and UVM, among others, as well meet with success on the national and international sailing scene, including 2007 graduate Juan Maegli, the Guatemalan 2008 Olympic representative in the Laser class and winner of a Gold Medal at the 2007 Pan-American Games in Hobie-Cats.
Head Coach: Jonathan Harley
Coach Jonathan Harley has been heading up the Portsmouth Abbey sailing team since the spring of 2014. He began sailing with his grandfather when he was five years old and has since competed at the regional, national, and international levels. Coach Harley served as director of the U.S. Olympic Sailing Team for 25 years during which time U.S. sailors won 27 Olympic medals, including seven golds. He has been the head sailing coach at Providence College and has been the director of sailing at the Chapoquoit, Duxbury, and New Bedford Yacht Clubs.
Outside of the competitive arena, Coach Harley once spent a year sailing to Tahiti and back aboard a 55’ ketch. In addition to coaching at Portsmouth Abbey he will assist the Office of Admission in recruitment efforts.
Assistant Coaches: Greg Dietrich, Bryndol Sones, and Mary Catherine Pietropaoli