September 11, 2023 – World number 1 ranked match racer, Chris Poole and his Riptide Racing defeated New Zealand’s Gavin Brady and his True Blue Racing team this weekend to claim victory at the Oakcliff International, stage 12 of the 2023 World Match Racing Tour hosted by Oakcliff Sailing in Oyster Bay, NY. Winning the event, Poole also claimed the 2023 US Match Racing Grand Slam title accumulating the highest points from four US match racing events in Chicago, Detroit and two events in Oyster Bay.
In the first-to-two points final, Brady secured the first race win but was over the start line (OCS) in the following two races giving Poole and crew the window to get ahead and close out score 2-1. Poole’s Riptide Racing crew included Mal Parker, Joachim Aschenbrenner, Ryan Wilmot and Bradley McLaughlin. The 2023 Oakcliff International had teams representing USA, Australia, Canada, Italy, New Zealand and South Africa vying for $10,000 in Prize Grants.
Dave Hood/ DH3 Racing representing Long Beach Yacht Club finished 3rd over USA’s Pearson Potts. Hood was on hand to present the winner of the Grand Slam Series with an invitation to the 2024 Long Beach Congressional Cup, a world championship stage of the World Match Racing Tour. The winner of the Oakcliff International also received the last invitation to the World Match Racing Tour’s 71st Bermuda Gold Cup next month 2-7 October. As winner of the Oakcliff event and Grand Slam Series, Poole already secured his invitation to the Congressional Cup and Bermuda Gold Cup so both spots were awarded to the second-place skipper, Gavin Brady.
Brady who is launching himself and his team back onto the World Match Racing Tour this year enjoyed being back in the Match 40’s for the first time in a number of years at last week’s Thompson Cup and then at the Oakcliff Internaitonal. “We used to sail these boats 15 years ago so had to remind ourselves how they perform, but we started to feel a bit more comfortable during the week” commented Brady. “It’s great to be back match racing and we are pleased to be in the top ten of the World Match Racing Tour leader-board which was our goal, and to try and get to the WMRT Final in China in December.”
Meanwhile, Poole’s win at Oakcliff on the back of last week’s win at the Thompson Cup put him on top of the World Match Racing Tour leaderboard with 104 points counting his best four results from the 2023 championship series so far, and with just two more events in Estonia and Bermuda before the WMRT Final in Shenzhen China from 12-17 December. The top eleven skippers on the WMRT leader-board after the penultimate event in Bermuda will qualify for the WMRT Final in China, the winner of which will be crowned 2023 Match racing World Champion and receive a share of the USD200,000 prize purse.