Deep field for International Masters 2021

Published on September 25th, 2021

After a year without one of San Diego Yacht Club’s most cherished and anticipated regattas, the International Masters Regatta returns in 2021 on October 21-23 in San Diego, CA.

Sailed in matched J/105 boats, the competition on San Diego Bay has attracted twelve noteworthy skippers from Canada and New Zealand along with California, New York, and Washington to vie for victory.

“The Invitational International Masters Regatta was established in the late 1970s by St. Francis Yacht Club member Don Trask and for years, the world’s greatest Master sailors raced in this international sailing competition in San Francisco Bay,” said San Diego Yacht Club Commodore Morton. “Now, the event is relocated to San Diego, and we’re proud to host it.”

This year’s skipper roster includes defending champion Andy Roy (2019) along with Bill Campbell (2017 Winner), Tad Lacey, Donald Jesberg, Carl Buchan, Bill Menninger (2016 Winner), Scott Harris, Rod Davis, Alan Field, Craig Healy, Phil Lotz, and David Gould.

“We wanted to come back mainly because we absolutely love the event,” said Roy. “We’d also like to try and defend our 2019 win. I’m lucky to have a crew who race J/105s regularly in Toronto. That’s obviously a big factor as I’ve only sailed the boat twice, both times at the International Masters Regatta.”

Rejoining the fleet from the 2019 running are skippers Tad Lacey, Bill Menninger, David Gould, and Scott Harris. Others such as Donald Jesberg are moving from crew to skipper.

“I’ve sailed on Tad Lacey’s team for the past three runnings,” noted Jesberg. “I mostly sail Etchells, but just raced as tactician in the Rolex NYYC Invitational Cup for San Francisco Yacht Club with skipper Shawn Bennett. The format of this race is great with short races that are all very equal. I’m looking forward to seeing old long-time friends.”

Jesberg and Bennett finished mid-fleet in 9th place at the Rolex NYYC Invitational this September. Bennett will now be Jesberg’s tactician for the 2021 Masters Regatta.

Carl Buchan, a 2021 National Sailing Hall of Fame inductee, is also new to skippering the event, but has crewed for his father in two Masters Regattas in previous years and is not short of experience. Buchan has earned many World Championship, National Championship, and North American Championship titles along with winning the Gold Medal in the Flying Dutchman Class while crewing for Jonathan McKee in the Los Angeles 1984 Olympics.

“I’m excited to sail with the fun team that we have out of SDYC which is always one of my favorites,” said Buchan. “My wife Carol and I have sailed and raced together for longer than our marriage, 42 years. She also sailed with my Dad in the Masters twice.”

Bill Menninger, winner of the 2016 International Masters Regatta, gave a friend of his from college the responsibility to assemble the crew. “I plan to practice the day before if we can get everyone there, and have fun,” said Menninger. “I have always admired the low practice, good result sailing. The people who could do the most with the least are my heroes. Not because of laziness, but because there are so many other things to do in life…and that practice thing is kind of boring as well.”

Bill Campbell also joins him on the podium of prior winners. Not only did Campbell win the regatta in 2017, but was also on Malin Burnham’s winning team in 2015. Campbell is also a three-time America’s Cup sailor who was also part of Bill Koch’s team that won the Cup in 1992.

“The age requirement gets a bunch of old men and women out on the race course for the fun and games,” notes Campbell. “The racing is close and intense, but left on the race course and we all enjoy each other’s company at the post race activities and parties.”

Craig Healy brings with him experience from the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games in Solings. Rod Davis holds an Olympic Gold Medal at the 1984 Olympic Games, a Silver Medal at the 1992 Games in Barcelona while also competing in the 1996 Games in Atlanta and the 2000 Games in Sydney.

Scott Harris was involved in a very successful Farr 40 program on Crocodile Rock and has been actively sailing J/125 Snoopy. Phil Lotz has competed in J/105s, Melges 32s, Etchells, Viper 640s and IC37s, along with winning two National Championships on his Swan 42, Arethusa, and winning the inaugural Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup.

David Gould comes with plenty of Masters experience with this regatta being his third in a row. Alan Field is known for his success in the Melges 24, coming second in the 2018 World Championship and first in many North American Championships.

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Source: SDYC

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