U.S. Adult Sailing Championship
Published on October 8th, 2023
Charlie Welsh and Scott Rasmussen clinched the 2023 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship, racing in VX Ones on October 5-8 in Macatawa, MI. Welsh and Rasmussen (Newport Beach, CA) finished tied with Doug Clark and Tim Desmond but won on tiebreak in the 8-race series.
“Conditions were very dynamic, so we had to make a lot of adjustments during racing to stay in touch with the course and the fleet,” noted Welsch. “I’ve got to thank my crew, Scott; he was super critical in getting us around the racecourse and keeping us plugged in. Without him this wouldn’t have been possible.”
The championship got underway in rain, 8-12 knots of wind, and 2-3 foot waves out on Lake Michigan, completing 4 races. On the second day, storms held off long enough to allow the race committee to get three races in the books on Lake Macatawa, the inside racecourse option. Racing was cancelled on day three due to gale force winds and 6-8 foot waves on Lake Michigan mixed with rainsqualls.
The final day saw the fleet back out on the big lake in 8-10 knots and a challenging sea state completing Race 8 before a breakdown delayed the start of Race 9. After the delay, the fleet got off the line in lighter breeze which died to under 4 knots then increased to over 25 sustained as a pop-up squall caused the race to be abandoned, marking the end of the regatta.
Host Macatawa Bay Yacht Club was assisted by PRO Rich Reichelsdorfer. Teams from around the country were invited to apply to the championship through US Sailing’s 11 Regional Sailing Associations. Seven teams from six of US Sailing’s Regional Sailing Associations participated in the championship.
Noted as one of US Sailing’s most coveted Adult Championships, the Mallory Trophy began as a men’s event in 1952 and transitioned to an open event in 1993. While youth and women had national, ladder-system championships for a quarter century, it was not until 1952 that a similar championship for men eighteen years and older was established during Robert N. Bavier, Jr.’s tenure as Executive Director of NAYRU.
Source: US Sailing