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Taylor Canfield: The road to repeat as World Match Racing Champion

Published on October 9th, 2014

In their first full year on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour, Taylor Canfield (ISV) and the US One Sailing Team ascended to the highest achievement in match race sailing to claim the 2013 World Match Racing Championship. But for US One to repeat in 2014, they will need to hurdle 4-time champion Ian Williams (GBR) who has held tightly to the overall lead.

Where as Williams has posted top two finished in all five tour events, Canfield’s team initially stumbled early with a 7-3-3 in the first three events. However, the reigning champions appear to have gained form again, topping the field at the most recent Chicago Match Cup (Sept. 17-22) and the Dutch Match Cup (Sept. 24-28) events.

With US One now second overall with only matches in Bermuda and Malaysia remaining, Canfield reflects on last season versus this season…

Probably the biggest difference between this season and last is getting over the fact that people believe there is a target on our back after winning the tour last year. Some people keep thinking that the pressure of having to perform will get to us. Last year it was following up our tour event wins in 2012 and recovering from our bad result, and this year is about defending the title.

While I think our team performs quite well under pressure, I think we do a good job of staying away from and not considering any of our positions all that stressful, or under much pressure to do well. If anything, the pressure is now on Ian Williams this year as opposed to us like last year.

We are currently 6 points behind Ian Williams on the overall leaderboard, so it is up to him to defend the lead. We just have to continue sailing how we have been over the past weeks in Chicago and Holland. We have already put ourselves in a spot to have a chance at the title in Malaysia. It’s now up to Williams to not screw it up.

To be honest there is not much difference between the two seasons. It’s all about the next race… what we can do to win the next race.

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