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World Match Racing Tour returns to St Moritz

Tuesday August 25th 2009, Author: Bernard Schopfer, Location: United Kingdom
The St. Moritz Match Race will take place in a week, over 1-6 September.

The 20kg ‘King of the Mountain’ Trophy will be awarded to the best team. Mathieu Richard (FRA), the current leader of the World Championship ranking and second in the ISAF ranking, is the current 'Defender. He won the 2008 event ahead of Ian Williams (UK).

The Swiss World Match Race Tour stopover is a Grade W event (W stands for World Championship); it is also an integral part of the ISAF Match Racing World Championship since 2005 and is therefore essential to the attribution of the world champion title. Prize money of approximately 100’000 Euros will be distributed to the best teams.

The races will take place on Lake St. Moritz; a true sailing stadium that provides a perfect and natural viewing platform from the shore. The local Maloja thermal breeze blows daily from 8 to 20 knots. All it needs is the sun to shine to start blowing around noon, guaranteeing a fantastic show to the numerous public.

12 teams representing eight nations have been selected for this regatta. Matthieu Richard (FRA) is an obvious favourite for the title although he just got taken over in the ISAF ranking by Adam Minoprio (NZL). His fellow competitor Sébastien Col - helmsman of K-Challenge’s America’s Cup team - will also compete in St. Moritz, alongside Ian Williams and Adam Minoprio. Peter Gilmour (AUS), a veteran of five America’s Cups and quadruple winner of the World Match Racing title, is also one of the event’s favourites. Last but not least, Johnie Berntsson (SWE) has just confirmed his participation.

Eric Monnin, from Switzerland, will be the local sailor of the event. Eighth last year, Monnin and his pals finished 3rd in 2007 and 6th in 2004. They know the lake inside out.

The St. Moritz match race will once again be held in Blu26 one-design sailing boats. Conceived by the Swiss Bluboats, the Blu26 are 8m long and 2.2m wide. They are perfectly adapted to match racing.

AFG, UBS and the Badrutt’s Palace Hotel have confirmed their support to the event as main partners.

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