Entrant list complete with Bermuda National Champion and past America’s Cup tactician

HAMILTON, Bermuda (Sept. 25, 2023) — The lineup for the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club’s Bermuda Gold Cup, a World Championship event of the World Match Racing Tour scheduled Oct. 2-7, is complete, with all 16 entrants confirmed.

Fourteen of the 16 teams were announced in August with three-time defending champion Taylor Canfield (Miami), World No. 1-ranked and newly minted U.S. match racing champion Chris Poole (Cold Spring Harbor, New York), the reigning Open Match Racing World Champion Nick Egnot-Johnson (Auckland, New Zealand), the reigning Women’s Match Racing World Champion Pauline Courtois (Brest, France), and the reigning Youth Match Racing World Champion Jeffrey Peterson (Santa Ana, California) highlighting the list.

Chris Poole/ Riptide Racing (USA) recently crowned 2023 US Match Racing Champion. (Photo: Ian Roman/WMRT)

The field was recently completed with the addition of Joshua Greenslade (Pembroke), winner of the Bermuda Match Racing National Championship, and Gavin Brady (Auckland, New Zealand), a past America’s Cup tactician.

Greenslade won the Bermuda championship by defeating Kelsey Durham (Smiths) in mid-August, 3-1. “It was a light air day,” said the 32-year-old Greenslade. “In the first two races, Kelsey got out in front of us but made a couple of mistakes that we capitalized on. He got away from us in the third race to win that one, and in the fourth race we played the shifts a little better and got in front and took it to the finish. It was a long, hot day and we were able to do just better than him and got the spot.”

Greenslade raced the RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup 2003-’06 and the Bermuda Gold Cup in 2013 but hasn’t been match racing much lately as he helps run the youth sailing program at Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. He plans to race with locals Dale Brangman (mainsail trimmer) and Ruiri Brown (headsails trimmer) and Peter Dill (bowman) of Michigan.

“We’ll get out there and see what we can do, hopefully cause some problems for the others,” he said. “You like to think there’s local knowledge in the harbour, but it’s very hit or miss. I just hope the wind’s good and not super weird either way. I hope that I can see something that no one else sees, but I can’t guarantee that.”

The 49-year-old Brady, who finished runner-up in the 2001 Bermuda Gold Cup and last sailed the event in 2005, gained entry through the Oakcliff International, the concluding event of the 2023 US Grand Slam Series (a series of four Grade 2 match race regattas in the U.S.). Brady’s True Blue Racing team lost the final to Poole’s Riptide Racing, but gained the berth because Poole is already entered.

“I’m still passionate about match racing but it’s been hard to fit in,” said Brady, who’s the tactician and organizes the crew for three racing programs. “I’ve spent a lot of time and effort on Maxi 72s, TP52s, Pac 52s and MOD70s, but little time on my own skills. I thought it was time to hone my skills and it’s been great motivation. I’ve been having a great time doing it.”

Gavin Brady

The championship trophy for the Bermuda Gold Cup, the King Edward VII Gold Cup, dates to 1907 and is the oldest match racing trophy in the world for a competition involving one-design yachts and is one of the most coveted championships in match racing. New Zealander Russell Coutts, who’s won the America’s Cup five times as a skipper or Chief Executive Officer, is the all-time winner with seven championships between 1990 and 2004. The regatta has been run in its current format, as a ladder-style tournament on the confines of Hamilton Harbour, since 1985.

Besides racing amid the natural beauty of Bermuda, part of the allure of the regatta is the class of boat, the International One-Design, or IOD as it’s popularly known. Designed in 1936, the IOD is 33 feet long overall, 21 feet long on the waterline, nearly 7 feet wide and displaces more than 7,100 pounds. Far from a hydrofoiler, the IOD is a glider that carries its speed for long stretches due to its weight. It’s a throwback in today’s age of lightweight flyers.

Canfield, who won the previous Gold Cup in October 2000 when it was also the Open Match Racing World Championship, has adapted well to the classic design despite racing multihulls and lightweight planers.

“You have more time to process what’s happening on the racecourse in an IOD than you do in a multihull such as the M32,” said Canfield. “In M32 fleet racing you have split-second decision making. Match racing IODs the crew has more time to prepare for maneuvers.”

Canfield and his Stars+Stripes Team USA, including longtime tactician Mike Buckley, Robby Bisi, Ian Liberty and Erik Shampain, will be late arrivals in Bermuda after racing in the M32 World Championship in Newport, R.I., this week.

“The plan is to fly into Bermuda on Monday (Oct. 2) morning and train in the afternoon,” said Canfield. “We haven’t focused much on match racing so I’m not sure where we stand with the current field, but Bermuda is one of my favorite venues. We’ve always done well there, and we have a great team. We’re aware of each other’s personalities and the chemistry is good.”

Anna Östling’s WINGS crew returns for a second run at the Bermuda Gold Cup after winning the 2023 Women’s World Match Racing Tour (Photo: Charles Anderson).
Russell Coutts, all-time winner of the Bermuda Gold Cup with seven championships between 1990 and 2004.

Anna Östling (Lerum, Sweden) is skipper of one of the three female crews slated to race the Bermuda Gold Cup, joining Courtois and New Zealand’s Celia Willison, and is returning for her second run at the prestigious trophy. Östling’s WINGS crew, the newly minted winners of the Women’s World Match Racing Tour, first raced in 2000 and placed 10th overall.

Östling eyes the starts as critical to any success her team, including Anna Holmdahl White (main trim and tactics), Linnéa Wennergren and Elisabeth Nilsson (trimmers) and Annika Carlunger (bow), will enjoy.

“We have been focusing on faster boats this last year so it will be great fun and a challenge to step into the IOD again,” said the 39-year-old skipper. “Last time was the first time for most of the crew, including me, and it took some time for us to understand the boat. So, I think with that experience I’m more prepared this time.

“I remember we had to plan the strategy a lot more before starting because we didn’t want to tack as often. So, we really need to be on our toes and take every chance to start ahead. In this fleet it will be difficult but if we can pull off some good starts, I’m confident my girls onboard will know how to sail the boat fast around the course,” Östling said.

Racing for the 71st Bermuda Gold Cup is scheduled to begin at 10:00 am on Tuesday, Oct. 3, and run through Saturday, Oct. 7. Visit the Bermuda Gold Cupand World Match Racing Tour websites for more information.

  1. Gavin Brady (49, Auckland, New Zealand) – True Blue Racing USA
    Crew: Chris Cullen, Tom Powrie, Dave Sweete
  2. Johnie Berntsson (52, Stenungsund, Sweden) – Berntsson Sailing Team
    Crew: Herman Andersson, Bjrn Lundgren, Patrik Sturesson
  3. Jeppe Borch (25, Copenhagen, Denmark) – Borch Racing
    Crew: Thor Malthe Andersen, Sebastian Pieters, Gustav Wantzin
  4. Taylor Canfield (34, Miami, USA) – Stars+Stripes Team USA
    Crew: Robby Bisi, Mike Buckley, Ian Liberty, Erik Shampain
  5. Pauline Courtois (34, Brest, France) – Match in Pink by Normandy Elite Team
    Crew: Louis Acker, Clara Bayol, Tha Khelif, Maelenn Lemaitre
  6. Nick Egnot-Johnson (25, Auckland, New Zealand) – KNOTS Racing
    Crew: Sam Barnett, Bradley McLaughlin, Zak Merton
  7. Joshua Greenslade (32, Pembroke, Bermuda)
    Crew: Dale Brangman, Ruiri Brown, Peter Dill
  8. Peter Holz (30, Chicago, Ill., USA)
    Crew: Sam Gilmour, John Hammond, Ellis Tonissi
  9. David Hood (Long Beach, Calif., USA) – DH3 Racing
    Crew: Ted Hackney, Ricky McGarvie, Chris Steele
  10. Eric Monnin (47, Immensee, Switzerland) – Capvis Swiss Match Racing Team
    Crew: Simon Brgger, Marc Monnin, Ute Monnin-Wagner
  11. Anna Östling (39, Lerum, Sweden) – WINGS
    Crew: Annika Carlunger, Anna Holmdahl White, Elisabeth Nilsson, Linna Wennergren
  12. Jeffrey Peterson (21, Santa Ana, Calif., USA) – Golden State Match Racing
    Crew: Will Birch-Tomlinson, Daniel Pegg, Tyler Walk
  13. Chris Poole (34, Cold Spring Harbor, NY, USA) – Riptide Racing
    Crew: Joachim Aschenbrenner, Matt Cornwell, Mal Parker, Luke Payne
  14. Harry Price (27, Sydney, Australia) – Down Under Racing
    Crew: Taylor Balogh, Julia Lines, Connor Mashlan
  15. Ian Williams (46, Lymington, England) – Chinaone.Ningbo
    Crew: Jon Gunderson, Gerard Mitchell, Richard Sydenham
  16. Celia Willison (25, Auckland, New Zealand) – Edge Racing New Zealand
    Crew: Alison Kent, Charlotte Porter, Rosie Rowell, Ruby Scholten

Visit the Bermuda Gold Cup and World Match Racing Tour websites for more information.

Nicole Butterworth, Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Sailing Office, sailingoffice@rbyc.bm
Sean McNeill, Bermuda Gold Cup Press Officer, bermudagoldcup@gmail.com
James Pleasance, World Match Racing Tour, info@wmrt.com