Chad Corning ’94 competed in the 2016 Atlantic Cup, America’s premier offshore sailing race sponsored by 11th Hour Racing. Beginning on May 28, the race showcased 10 teams comprised of the top Class 40 sailors in the world. Corning served as co-skipper with Ed Cesare as part of the Pleiad Racing team.
While many races require large sailing teams, the Atlantic Cup is unique as a double-handed (two people) offshore event that covers 1,000 miles from Charleston, S.C., to Portland, Maine. The third leg saw the sailors switch their boats for an inshore race and expand their crew to six people. The combined overall winner of all three legs is crowned Atlantic Cup Champion.
“The Atlantic Cup presents a very special challenge,” Corning remarks. “It breathed some new life into my passion for ocean racing.”
Corning and Cesare have sailed the race together for the past two years in the oldest boat in the competition. Despite competing against newer technology, the two have utilized their exceptional navigational skills each year and prior to the race Corning said he hoped to “sail the boat to its full potential, get a podium finish on one of the ocean legs and try to repeat our win in the inshore series.”
Additionally, the Atlantic Cup’s commitment to sustainability especially resonates with Corning. The competition is carbon-neutral, meaning that teams are required to have non-carbon means of generating power.
“This folds into one of the important sub-goals of the race, which is to raise awareness of ocean health,” explains Corning, whose boat is powered by solar energy.
Corning reflects that his time sailing under Coach Scott Iklé ’84 helped him to learn lessons that he regularly applies in his career. The former English major has had a busy summer, including the GC32 Racing Tour in Italy and Spain. This fall, Corning will compete in the Melges 32 World Championships in Newport, R.I., where he will also be coaching. Entering the Atlantic Cup, Corning had logged 30,000 offshore racing miles in his career.
Corning serves as president of the Corning Group, a multi-faceted outsource advisory firm specializing in data entry, OMR scanning and database administration.