Preliminary teams announcement
The New York Yacht Club has announced its official list of invited yacht clubs for its biennial Invitational Cup, taking place over September 10-17, 2011.
“The essence of the regatta is to bring together Corinthian (amateur) yacht club teams in a competition that not only is tough and demanding but also levels the playing field,” explained NYYC Commodore David K. Elwell Jr.. The five day long regatta will once again be sailed in chartered NYYC Swan 42s. Sails are supplied and rigs are equally tuned, allowing each club to demonstrate the skills of its top sailors.
"The response to and the outcome of the 2009 event were greater than we could ever have expected,” added Elwell. “Those yacht clubs returning have vowed to do so with a vengeance and many new clubs are joining the mix.”
The top finishers in 2009 offered automatic entry to the 2011 event are New York Yacht Club, Royal Canadian Yacht Club, Japan Sailing Federation, Nyländska Jaktklubben of Finland; Royal Cork Yacht Club of Ireland and Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. In addition, Real Club Nautico Barcelona (Spain) and Royal Yacht Squadron (London, England) have been invited to return, while new yacht clubs Clube Naval de Cascais (Portugal), Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, late Clube do Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Royal Cape Yacht Club (Cape Town, South Africa), Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron (Australia), Société Nautique de Saint Tropez (France), Yacht Club Argentino, and Yacht Club Punta Ala (Italy) are expected to accept first-time invitations.
Rounding out the fleet of 16 will be three additional U.S. teams that will be determined by the outcome of this year’s 24-club U.S. Qualifying Series (scheduled for September 7-11 at the NYYC in Newport), and up to 12 additional international yacht clubs on the condition that they bring their own boats for competition.
The worldwide fleet of NYYC Swan 42s is currently up to 46 boats, 23 of which are owned by New York Yacht Club members.
“The event promises to showcase the finest amateur sailors in the world,” said returning Event Chair John Mendez, noting that, as evidenced by the teams formed in 2009, there are plenty of big names in sailing who do not or no longer sail as professionals. “The opportunity to race at such a high level of competition has encouraged many clubs to seek an invitation, for where else can they take their best club racers and compete against national and international champions, even America’s Cup legends, on an equal basis? For many, the chance to race in Newport alone is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and to socialize in such an electric atmosphere after a day of hard racing is simply icing added to the cake.”
Racing in the NYYC Invitational Cup presented by Rolex will take place on Narragansett Bay and Rhode Island Sound. Prizes will be awarded to the top three teams, and the winning yacht club's name will be engraved on the NYYC Invitational Cup that is permanently displayed at NYYC’s 44th Street Clubhouse in Manhattan