Gold Cup line up

Non-AC skippers head for Bermuda for premier match race event in October

Wednesday September 11th 2002, Author: Dana Paxton, Location: United States
The next America's Cup winner could be discovered in Bermuda. As one of the few Grade 1 regattas in the world to offer amateur skippers and up-and-comers a chance to match race against the professionals, the Bermuda Gold Cup regularly shows up on resumes of the world's best yachting skippers. Paul Cayard, Russell Coutts, Peter Gilmour and Gavin Brady have all made their mark on this event and there are scores of young sailors working their way toward future America's Cup campaigns by gaining valuable experience on the Swedish Match Tour.

Seeded Skippers

The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club (RBYC) has announced the eight seeded skippers who will compete in the Bermuda Gold Cup - to be held October 12-20 -- the fourth of nine events on Swedish Match Tour 2002/3. Three of the skippers are ranked on the Swedish Match Tour rankings. The winner of the Bermuda Gold Cup will receive the King Edward VII Trophy and a share of the $65,000 prize purse.

"There are a number of highly qualified skippers making their debut in Bermuda this year," said RBYC Commodore Les Crane. "Traditionally the Gold Cup fields a strong fleet of talented sailors and this year is no exception."

The eight seeded skippers are: Bjorn Hansen (Sweden), Jes Gram-Hansen (Denmark), Karol Jablonski (Poland), Lars Nordbjerg (Denmark), Jesper Radich (Denmark), Steffan Lindberg (Finland) Mikael Lindqvist (Sweden) and Matthias Rahm (Sweden).

Unseeded Skippers

The RBYC also named the unseeded skippers who will compete in a qualifying round with the top-finishing eight teams advancing into Round One of the Bermuda Gold Cup. The unseeded skippers include: Sally Barkow (USA), Bill Buckles (USA), Scott Dickson (USA), Andy Horton (USA), Peter Bromby (Bermuda), Michael Green (St. Lucia), Marten Hedlund (Sweden), Henrik Jensen (Denmark), Anthony Kotoun (U.S. Virgin Islands), Chris Law (U.K.), Tucker Thompson (USA), Mason Woodworth (U.K.) and Karl Ziegler (USA), and the top two skippers in the Bacardi Cup (September 28-29 in Hamilton Harbour, Bermuda).

Women's Event

The Bermuda International Women's Match Racing Championship will serve as a unique qualifying round to the Bermuda Gold Cup, with the winner and runner-up advancing to Round One. The skippers for the Bermuda International Women's Match Racing Championship include: Elizabeth Baylis (USA), Marie Bjorling (Sweden), Sandy Hayes (USA), Elizabeth Kratzig (USA), Paula Lewin (Bermuda), Lotte Pedersen (Denmark), Deborah Willist (USA) and Klarrtje Zuiderbaan (The Netherlands).

With a 32-skipper format - the largest of its kind in the world -- the Bermuda Gold Cup remains as one of the few grade 1 match-racing events that offers an opportunity for unranked skippers to break into the sport of match racing.

The event is hosted by the RBYC and the Bermuda Department of Tourism. Renaissance Reinsurance, and Investors Guaranty Fund, both based in Bermuda, are the Presenting Sponsors. Primary Sponsors include Bacardi and Continental Airlines. Supporting sponsors include Coral Beach and Tennis Club, Horizons and Cottages and Waterloo House, Smatt's Cycles and Telecom. The Bermuda Gold Cup is an Octagon-managed event.

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