The World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) has announced a nine race calendar for 2011 with successful events like Match Cup Sweden and Monsoon Cup anchoring the tour as it searches for new venues around the world. The season will run from May to November. The sailing world championship is also looking for advisers to help new venues and events become established.
[cleeng_content id=”148161909″ description=”99 cents or 10,000 hours. The path to being an expert can be easy or hard. ” price=”0.99″]The calendar as announced does not include Vietnam or China, but with the Tour actively seeking to add a further six new venues by 2013, more regattas may be annouced.
2011 ISAF MATCH RACING WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
- May 10 – 15 Match Race France Marseille, France 12 J80
- May 24 – 29 Match Race Germany Langenargen, Germany 12 TBC
- June 7 – 12 Korea Match Cup Gyeonggi, Korea 12 KM36
- June 22 – 26 Portimao Portugal Match Cup Portimao, Portugal 12 SM40
- July 4 – 10 Match Cup Sweden Marstrand, Sweden 12 DS37
- August 24 – 28 Danish Open Bornholm, Denmark 12 DS37
- Aug 30 – Sept 4 St Moritz Match Race St Moritz, Switzerland 12 Blu26
- October 3 – 9 Argo Group Gold Cup Hamilton, Bermuda 24 IOD
- Nov 22 – 27 Monsoon Cup K.Terengganu, Malaysia 12 F36
The World Match Racing Tour is currently engaged in conversations with a number of interested parties via a bidding process being run by Terry Newby and Regatta International. Part of this process is to provide new events with a specialist sailing advisor who can offer expert sailing experience and event management skills. This model has been used by the Monsoon Cup who have benefited from the guidance of Peter Gilmour over recent years.
WMRT Tour Director, Craig Mitchell said:
“The Tour is never standing still as we’re always looking to improve the experience for the teams, fans, media and public.”
All this news was buried in a press release about a new scoring system, which seems a little strange. Only the most hard-core ‘anorak fans’ really care about the point system. While it is important for the sailors whether or not the third place winner gets 19 points of 15 points is not going to attract new fans or help sponsors in any way.
Nevertheless, the organisers have changed the rules saying:
“We feel that the current scoring system is a little top heavy with some teams that perform well being left behind on the leaderboard. Even though match racing is a winner takes all sport we hope that the new system will keep the championship podium open for as long as possible, providing drama and excitement until the final cross. 1”
For the stats junkies, the new scoring system for the 2011 season is designed to give a more even spread for teams in the top ten and reward consistency.
- Points will be awarded down to 10th place rather than 8th at each stage, while the spread in points between each position will be reduced.
- The team’s best five events count towards their overall position plus the points from the season finale, the Monsoon Cup which carries points worth 1.5 times more.
- The winner of each stage will still win 25 points but the runner up and third place will now receive 22 and 19 respectively compared to the existing model of 20 and 15.
The World Match Racing Tour will have nine places available for Tour Card holders in 2011.who will be competing for a bonus prize fund which has been doubled to USD500,000. The top three teams in this year’s WMRT will be guaranteed access to a card – the winner will receive their card for free while the second and third place will be able to secure their cards for USD10,000 and USD20,000 respectively.
2010 has been a time of change in the world of yacht racing. In 2011, some Skippers who have competed in the World Match Racing Tour may be tempted elsewhere. At least two of the top stars of the Tour are committed to other projects. 2009 champion, Adam Minoprio has signed up to do the Volvo Ocean Race with the Camper project (backed by Team New Zealand). Ben Ainslie, who, like many sailors was using the WMRT for match race experience required for the America’s Cup, but with the withdrawal of TEAMORIGIN from that campaign will focus on the 2012 Olympics.
The tour then has come up with a rule to try and deal with the absence of Minoprio and Ainslie. Should any of the top three place finishers from 2010 choose not to take up a tour card. They will be able to transfer it to another top flight skipper, under the condition that the team taking it up consists of at least 60% of the same crew that won the Tour Card.
More World Match Racing Tour News…[/cleeng_content]
- Cross refers to boats ‘crossing’ each other on the water, though in a Match Race, the boats are going downwind on the final leg so crossing happens rarely. ↩