World Class Match Racing Comes To Chicago Next Week

Published on August 1st, 2013

Chicago, IL (August 1, 2013) – World-class stadium sailing returns to Chicago August 6-11 with the Chicago Match Cup, a $100,000 prize money event organized by the Chicago Match Race Center (CMRC) and featuring 12 teams from seven nations in the only U.S. stop on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour (AWMRT).

For the first time, Chicago Match Cup will set sail alongside Tall Ships Chicago at Chicago’s most popular tourist venue, the world famous Navy Pier, where more than a million spectators are in splashing range of seeing the world’s best match racing talent in action alongside 14 majestic Tall Ships.

This talent includes the following eight AWMRT skippers and their teams:

* Reigning World and 2012 Chicago Match Cup Champion Ian Williams and CAC Team Pindar from the United Kingdom;

* Johnie Berntsson and Stena Sailing Team from Sweden;

* Bjorn Hansen and eWork Sailing Team, also from Sweden;

* Phil Robertson and WAKA Racing team from New Zealand;

* Adam Minoprio and Team Alpari FX, also from New Zealand;

* Keith Swinton and Black Swan Racing team from Australia;

* Pierre Antoine Morvan and Vannes Aggio Sailing Team from France;

* Taylor Canfield and USone team from the U.S. Virgin Islands – Canfield is also the Sailing Director at CMRC.

The remaining four teams have been invited and/or qualified through previous match race events:

* Jordan Reece and Estate Master Sailing Team powered by Etihad Airways, from Australia;

* Will Tiller and Full Metal Jacket team from New Zealand;

* Gavin Brady and Team Vesper from the US;

* Chicago’s own Don Wilson, founder of the CMRC.

The inaugural Chicago Sports Commission Charity Sports Challenge kicks off Chicago Match Cup week on Tuesday, Aug. 6 at 5 p.m. featuring Chicago’s “land-based” professional and collegiate sports stars. Trading in their gloves, cleats and helmets, former players and current coaches from Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago Bears, Chicago White Sox, Northwestern University and University of Illinois will test their athletic skills in a pro-am competition.

The teams will be a mix of Chicago’s sports and media personalities, AWMRT professional sailors, and lucky students from Chicago Public Schools Rickover Academy. CMRC will make a $25,000 donation on the winning team’s behalf to World Sport Chicago, a not-for-profit working to enhance participation in sport by youth across Chicago.

Racing gets underway Wednesday from 10:00 AM – 2:30 PM, and from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM on Thursday, August 8th. The twelve teams begin the first stage of competition in a Round Robin series of match races pitting teams against each other on windward-leeward courses set just off the east end of Navy Pier. Spectators will have grandstand seats and pier-side standing room to view all the action while live public commentary narrates all the action.

On Friday, August 9th from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM the top four from this stage will advance to the Quarter-Finals, while a Repechage round determines the other four teams to advance from the remaining eight. And from 10:00 AM to 4:30 PM on Saturday, August 10th, the Quarter-Finals conclude, with the final four teams rolling straight into the Semi-Finals.

On Sunday, August 10, racing will start with another pro-am regatta held from 11:00 – 12:00, and the Finals to determine the new 2013 Chicago Match Cup champion starting at 1:00 PM. The final awards and closing ceremony is set for 3:00 – 3:30 PM.

Daily press conferences with the match race skippers will be held on the main stage and open to the public and press from Wednesday through Saturday.

Visitors interested in a VIP experience at Chicago Match Cup may purchase tickets to the Windy City Lounge, where for $25 each ticketholders get access to an exclusive viewing deck at the venue, general admission to the Race Village and Tall Ships, a Chicago Match Cup t-shirt, a chance to be in the ‘hot seat’ ride on a TOM 28 racing in the event, and photos with Chicago Match Cup and AWMRT trophies. More information here.

Tall Ships Chicago 2013 presented by Pepsi, arrives Wednesday August 7 and includes an international fleet of 14 Tall Ships. Visitors can walk the festival grounds to view the Tall Ships, board a Tall Ship for a dockside tour or get a taste of life at sea with a sail-away cruise on select Tall Ships. This nautical event also includes fun-filled festivities and educational opportunities for the whole family.

Other free-to-the public events during the Chicago Match Cup include Youth Day on Wednesday from 12:30 – 3:30 p.m., the crowd-favorite Parade of Sail and the Opening Ceremonies to officially introduce the Chicago Match Cup and Tall Ship crews. The Navy Pier’s Fireworks display will also be held at 9:30 PM every evening from Wednesday through Saturday.

Social media using Facebook and Twitter (@MatchRaceCenter) will provide continuous information and commentary throughout the event. Live race updates via Twitter are at @liverace_wmrt

Check out the promotional video preview of the Chicago Match Cup.

For media credentials to the Chicago Match Cup, contact Laura Muma at or Dobbs Davis at seahorse.usa

Click here for more information, photos and videos on the Chicago Match Cup.

Click here for more information about the Alpari World Match Racing Tour.

Click here for more information about Tall Ships Chicago 2013 and to purchase tickets.

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