State Street Marathon Sailing

Two Sets of Hands Are Better than One

The unmatched partnership of a team

September 2021

In offshore sailing, the sea is often an unforgiving racecourse. For State Street Marathon Sailors Francesca Clapcich and Jesse Fielding, navigating the ocean together allows them to marry their distinct skillsets and compete as a team.

“Our ability to make decisions as a team, bolsters our potential on the racecourse,” says Jesse. “When Francesca and I are sailing together, we’re able to rely on our unique experiences and process them together to evaluate our next move. We both have a mutual respect and focus on our overall performance.”

A Team Makes All the Difference

“The playbook for racing solo requires precise performance, ensuring each and every maneuver matches your competitors’,” explains Francesca. “When you’re on a team you have the opportunity to use your teammate’s skills to match your weaknesses and share jobs — making the vessel more efficient.”

A successful team is ultimately a reflection of each member’s ability to operate well as an individual, especially in providing new approaches to difficult tasks. As sailing requires extreme endurance, especially offshore, teams must operate as a well-oiled machine. Francesca and Jesse’s open-ended feedback and delegation of tasks enable their sailing skills to shine through in tandem on the sailing course.

Navigating the seas on Fearless together requires Francesca and Jesse to work quickly to adjust course and trust each other’s strengths in unfavorable conditions.

“Using our combined skills and past experiences has allowed us to gain on our competition,” says Jesse. “We both anticipate different sailing scenarios, like rough conditions, and quickly arrive at a mutual decision to address our approach. Since we began working together on Fearless, Francesca and I have used our mutual respect, honesty and focus. Our partnership has only grown stronger since we first started sailing together.”

Racing as a Team Helps Train for Solo Races

“The learning curve when you’re sailing solo is different. It can make you be true with yourself, yielding improvement through self-assessment of your skills and performance,” describes Francesca. “Sailing with Jesse, I’m able to match my own self-criticisms and use his feedback to improve my performance. I also have to consider his point-of-view and adjust my approach, which makes us stronger on the racecourse.”

Setting out for a solo race can be intimidating, especially when competing in harsh conditions and against well-seasoned competitors. Having a team member by your side can reinforce confidence in your own abilities and amplify your skills to excel in challenging situations.

“Sailing as a team requires compromise. While sailing solo allows you to move quickly in your decision-making, Jesse’s perspective as a sailor has changed my sailing approach in many ways since our partnership on Fearless began,” describes Francesca. “He has a great handling of the boat and has a different approach as a sailor that has informed my own techniques.”

Like many teams, Jesse and Francesca’s differences make them stronger together and they are able to use what they’ve learned from one another when they are sailing apart as well.

“Francesca and I come from different corners of the sailing world,” says Jesse. “It’s such a big opportunity to have her perspective and I couldn’t be more thankful to be offshore with her competing among the world’s best. Her attention to every tenth of a nautical mile per hour is uncanny.”

Francesca and Jesse have made an impact on each other’s approach to sailing, offering new strategies and advice while racing together. In their time as a team, they have made an immeasurable impact on each other both professionally and personally, taking their learnings on with them far beyond the racecourse.

At State Street we’re proud of the accomplishments Francesca and Jesse have achieved racing both solo and together as our very own State Street Marathon Sailing Team.