Past Champions Set the Table
Published on July 16th, 2016
Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Governor’s Cup, the oldest junior match race event in the world, 12 notable match racing skippers competed in the Alumni Regatta at Balboa Yacht Club on Saturday, July 16 in Newport Beach, CA. The field included nine past Gov Cup winners along with a winning America’s Cup tactician and two top-ranked competitors on the World Match Racing Tour.
The competitors in the 50th Governor’s Cup came early to serve as crew for the event, with each skipper drawing names from a hat which would form their crew. The racing consisted of three fleet races, with the top four teams advancing to the match racing stage. The conditions were ideal with nine knots of breeze and comfortable temperatures.
In the Petit Final, Dennis Durgan, two-time Congressional Cup Winner and America’s Cup winning tactician, competed against past Gov Cup champ Jack Franco, with Dennis proving to be the winner. For the finals, Taylor Canfield, World Sailing’s #1 ranked match racer and three time Congressional Cup winner, competed against Mike Pinckney, two time Gov Cup winner and currently head sailing coach at Balboa Yacht Club. In a very close finish, Mike was able to keep ahead of Taylor for the win. “Taylor’s fast,” remarked Pinckney. “I am happy we had only one race.”
The Alumni Regatta was the first test for the new Gov Cup 22 boats which were recently launched. “I am happy to see that the work that everyone has done,” noted Alan Andrews, designer of the Gov Cup 22. “Everyone in the industry has worked together!”
The 50th Annual International Junior Match Racing Championship will be sailed on July 19-23. This year, the upper age limit for the racers has been raised to 22 years of age, which has made it possible for past winners to return to try to repeat against the strongest field in the history of the event. All but one of the twelve skippers competing this year have previously raced in the Gov Cup.
The Governor’s Cup was first held in 1967, two years after the first Congressional Cup was held at Long Beach Yacht Club. Inspired by that Match Racing format, BYC members Chet and Glee Purcell organized the Gov Cup to provide similar competition for their son, S/C Tom Purcell and his friends. Tom is co-chairing the 2016 50th Governor’s Cup with Paul Blank.
Source: Governor’s Cup