Wilson Wins CMRC Spring Invitational
Season opener for CMRC featured strong field of competitors racing in shifty, challenging conditions.
Photo Credit: Isao Toyama
After two days of racing in wildly varied spring sailing conditions on Lake Michigan, Chicago Match Race Center founder Don Wilson and his team of Jordan Reece, Sam Rogers, Matt Woodworth and Steph Kapinos won the Grade 3 CMRC Spring Invitational, the opening event in the 2014 CMRC season. Through four stages of competition (Round Robin, Quarter-Finals, Semi-Finals and Finals), victory came for Wilson in the last match in the Finals against another CMRC member, Steven Lowery, who was winner of the Round Robin in a tie-break with Wilson. Wilson's win came down to the last seconds of the final race and he prevailed after multiple lead changes in a hard fought Finals series.
The victory earns Wilson an invitation to the 2014 US Match Racing Championship and a spot in the Lake Michigan Sail Racing Federation (LMSRF) Championship, the Richardson trophy, with both events to be held this Fall. Steve Lowery also won an invitation to the Richardson Trophy. And Stephanie Roble won a spot at the US Women's Match Racing Championship.
Even though Wilson was the highest-ranked skipper of any in the field (and at 23rd the highest-ranked US skipper in the world), he and his team had some formidable competition on the road to victory. After the first Round Robin in Saturday's 3-14 knot shifty breeze, Wilson and Lowery were tied with a single loss and there was a four way tie for third place.
Sunday's 7-14 knot westerly breeze was not much different than Saturday, with enough puffs and shifts to keep both competitors and race managers on their toes. And when the Round Robin concluded, Lowery chose CMRC Director Tod Reynolds as his opponent, a decision that nearly backfired when Reynolds defeated Lowery in the first and third match in the first-to-three point series, only to lose the next two and fall into the Consolation Round. Roble was knocked out in the Quarter-Finals by reigning Canada's Cup challenger Bob Hughes. Hughes had World Match Racing Champion US One Skipper Taylor Canfield and his bowman Hayden Goodrick on board, who helped him earn an undefeated 3-0 score against the top-ranked US Women's match race skipper and her Team Epic Racing.
Photo Credit: Isao Toyama
And it took five matches for Turney to defeat Val Smith for his Semi-Final berth, an impressive result under pressure considering Turney at this event last year failed to win a single match and had not match raced at all since September last year.
Wilson's defeat of Hughes in the first-to-two point Semi-Final took all three matches to resolve, but was no doubt a sweet victory for Wilson considering it was Hughes who took from him the right to defend Canada's Cup in their last series encounter, as well as the strong intramural rivalry enjoyed by members of both teams. But Hughes's victory against Turney in the Petit-Final kept him on the podium for the event.
- Don Wilson
- Steven Lowery
- Bob Hughes
- Ned Turney
- Brendan Kopp
- Stephanie Roble
- Val Smith
- Tod Reynolds
- Landon Gardner
- Peter Holz
More Info visit : Chicago Match Race Center