World Match Racing Tour 2015 begins in USA

Published on February 26th, 2015

Long Beach, CA (February 26, 2015) – With Ian Williams (GBR) clinching the Monsoon Cup in a hard-fought victory in Malaysia – sealing the deal on his fifth ISAF Match Racing World Championship title – all eyes now turn to 2015 and the excitement of a new year, new venues, and new challenges.

In just three months, the Long Beach Yacht Club will kick off the 2015/16 World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) with the 51st running of the Congressional Cup. This venerable event is the newest addition to the eight-stop WMRT global series: but a legend in itself.

The Congressional Cup has been a model and innovator in the game of match racing since 1965, introducing the concept of on-the-water umpiring in 1988. The Grade 1 event combines expert race organization with outstanding hospitality, to make it a favorite among match-racing skippers worldwide. Its superior reputation spurred WMRT organizers to seek out and incorporate Congressional Cup as part of its combative and thrilling global WMRT, which is now in its 16th consecutive season.

WMRT Champion Williams said, “The Congressional Cup is a very prestigious event in its own right, but being part of the Tour and counting towards the World Championship title will give the event added importance. Team GAC Pindar will be doing our utmost to win our third Crimson Blazer!”

The Crimson Blazer is an honor bestowed to the winner of the Congressional Cup, and has been donned by the preeminent names in sailing over the years: Ken Read, Gavin Brady, Dennis Conner, Ted Turner, Dean Barker, Ed Baird, Bill Ficker, Ted Turner, more. Since its inception, the Congressional Cup has been recognized as the gateway to the top echelon of competitive sailing, for up and coming sailors. Williams logged back-to-back victories in the 2011 and 2012 Congressional Cups; bowing to Simone Ferrarese in 2013, and Taylor Canfield in 2014.

“The whole objective in partnering with the World Match Racing Tour is to keep our 50 year tradition intact – but enhance it with the excitement the Tour brings,” said Congressional Cup 2015 Chairman Bill Durant. Competing skippers were unanimous in agreement, Durant noted. “They said, ‘Don’t change anything!’ And that’s our plan. Having our event sanctioned by WMRT and ISAF will help the skippers get their sponsors behind it, but will not change the tradition and tenor of the Congressional Cup.”

Already LBYC is preparing for the annual event: with Stage One of the Club Sail-off complete, skippers Scott Dickson and Dustin Durant will vie next month for the Club Representative slot for Congressional Cup 2015. Another invitee, French skipper Pierre-Antoine Morvan – who qualified for Congressional Cup by taking the US Grand Slam title (best overall in Chicago, Detroit, Knickerbocker and Oakcliff events), made a spectacular showing at the Monsoon Cup – promising a thrilling and perhaps surprising Congressional Cup 2015 outcome, as the world’s top talent heads to Long Beach May 13-17.

Long Beach Yacht Club has been one of the nation’s premiere boating institutions since its founding in 1929. It is located at 6201 E. Appian Way in Long Beach, Calif.

Congressional Cup:
World Match Racing Tour:

Source: Congressional Cup

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