Miami Invitational Kicks off CMRC 2012 Season Schedule
Ten teams from five nations race for Open Grade 2 points in Olympic Elliott 6M's starting Friday
2012 Season schedule includes the Chicago Match Cup, three ISAF Open Grade 2 events and four Grade 3 events, including the 100th edition of the Richardson Trophy
Chicago, IL- For its fourth consecutive season of providing world-class Open match racing, the Chicago Match Race Center (CMRC) is pleased to announce its schedule of events for the upcoming 2012 season. In addition to a Winter Series event held in Miami later this week, these events will be held monthly starting in May and ending in October at the CMRC's main venue at Belmont Harbor or at the Navy Pier in Chicago.
In all, eight events ranging from ISAF Grade 3 to Grade WC (World Championship) will be hosted by CMRC this year, the most comprehensive of any match racing center in the world.
To stave off the winter blues, the Miami Invitational held over February 24-26 offers competitors an opportunity to race the Olympic match racing keelboat, the Elliott 6M, in a competition designed to attract the Women's teams headed to Weymouth for the Olympic Games in August. This event is co-organized with Sail Sheboygan and has been upgraded to ISAF Open Grade 2, attracting an impressive array of 10 teams from five nations.
Among these are five Women's Olympic aspirants: Anna Tunnicliffe, Genny Tulloch, Stephanie Roble and Sally Barkow and their teams from the USA are still vying for the right to go to Weymouth in August, while Mandy Mulder and her team have already earned their right to represent the Netherlands.
The remaining five teams represent a diverse array of talent, with Kiwi Reuben Corbett being the top seed at 10th in the world rankings; USVI-born Taylor Canfield is the top North American match racer at 27th in the world; Chicago-based Don Wilson ranked 33rd in the world is the second-highest US match racer; Florida-based Laser sailor Brad Funk, in only 4 match race events in the past year, has still managed to climb to 140th in the world; and past Bermuda Gold Cup champion Andy Green from the UK is back to show his skills in the Elliott 6M's.
CMRC then kicks off the season on its home court at Belmont Harbor in its equally-matched TOM 28 Max class keelboats with the CMRC Spring Invitational, held over May 19-20. This is the first of three Grade 3 events at CMRC, and serves as the Lake Michigan qualifier for the Richardson Trophy, and also as a regional qualifier to US Match Racing Championship to be held at Boston YC over September 20-23.
In June the CMRC's Grade 2, Chicago Match Cup Qualifier will be held at Navy Pier, where over June 1-3 spectators can see close at hand the excitement and drama of match race sailing in this perfect venue for 'stadium sailing.' Amongst the possible field of 12 teams, one entry will be the winner from Long Beach YC's Butler Cup in March, and the event winner will qualify for the following month's Chicago Match Cup. This is an example of the unique system of cross-pollination in match racing, where success in one event leads to opportunities for continued success in others.
CMRC's Chicago Match Cup will be upgraded again this year to be the highest prize money event in the US, with $100,000 to be split amongst 12 world-class teams to race over July 11-15 at Navy Pier. More details about this exciting event will be announced next week.
Another Grade 2 Invitational event will be again at Navy Pier on August 17-19, with a maximum of 12 teams expected to do battle to kick off the 2012 US Grand Slam Series of four consecutive Grade 2 regattas. Besides the August Grade 2 Invitational, this series will include the Detroit Cup at Bayview YC, the Knickerbocker Cup in Manhasset Bay, NY, and the Oakcliff International in Oyster Bay, NY. The winner of the Grand Slam Series then gets an invitation to the Grade 1 Congressional Cup at Long Beach YC in 2013.
The following month the action then shifts back to Belmont Harbor, where over September 27-28 and September 29-30 there will be two consecutive Grade 3 events, the Fall Invitational A and Fall Invitational B events.
And the 2012 season will conclude over October 12-14 with the 100th edition of the Richardson Trophy, the oldest match racing trophy in North America that is not a challenge cup. CMRC founder Don Wilson will be defending his 2011 title against the best match race sailors from around the Great Lakes region.
For further information, about the Miami Invitational, including results and daily videos of the action, visit CMRC's website www.chicagomatchrace.com
Requests for invitation to other CMRC events, Notices of Race, news, photos and videos from past events, and more information on membership to CMRC can also be found at CMRC's website.
Official Partners of the CMRC include Eurex, CME Group, City Inns family of hotels, and Line Honors, which is the Official Clothing Supplier to CMRC.
For more information about CMRC events, contact CMRC Director Tod Reynolds on +1-312-542-1156 or visit www.chicagomatchrace.com.
For more information about the World Match Racing Tour, visit www.wmrt.com.