16 December, 2020 – The World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) announced today a partnership with Oakcliff Sailing based in Oyster Bay, NY USA with the launch of the Oakcliff Match Racing Academy to run from 4-16 August, 2021. The two-week academy will provide training on all aspects of match racing skills, including practical sailing tactics on board the Oakcliff fleet of Match 40 yachts.

The Oakcliff Match Racing Academy in partnership with WMRT is open to sailors with all levels of match racing ability. Former Oracle bowman, and World Match Racing Tour Champion Hayden Goodrich is slated as Head Coach for the Academy fortnight. Additional top level match racing sailors and coaches are expected to attend.

“We are delighted to work with Oakcliff Sailing to promote the 2021 match racing academy” commented WMRT Executive Director James Pleasance. “Oakcliff is a world-class training centre and their facilities, particularly in match racing, and are second to none. The academy programme is a fantastic opportunity for any aspiring match racer to learn from the very best sailors, and I would encourage everyone to get involved with the academy next summer.”

Academy attendees will form teams to compete in Oakcliff hosted Grade 5 and Grade 3 regattas included as part of the curriculum, giving multiple chances for racing experience on the course in addition to drills, two boat testing, classroom sessions, debriefs, and boat shop lessons.

The Academy is followed by the last 3 stops of the match racing US Grand Slam Series; The Detroit Cup, Oakcliff International, and Thompson Cup. The winner of the Grand Slam Series, in its 11th season, earns an invitation to the 2022 Congressional Cup hosted by Long Beach Yacht Club. All stages of the Grand Slam are also included as World Tour level events of the World Match Racing Tour earning skippers points towards the annual WMRT championship leader-board.

“We’re thrilled to be working with the Tour to bring so much talent and match racing to the US next season” added Patrick Burks, Oakcliff’s Race Program Director. “It will help us to grow match racing more in the US and provide match racers with a way to build their skills from wherever they start at when they come to Oakcliff. But really, August in Oyster Bay is where you want to be if you’re a match racer.”

With this convenient timing as well as provided housing and easy transportation from three major airports, attending the Academy in conjunction with these high level regattas is more feasible than ever for international attendees. Racers who can’t commit to the whole program but have their own teams can request an invite to just the Grade 3 Clinegatta. More information at oakcliffsailing.org/regattas.

The two-week academy program costs USD2,100. Need based scholarships are available.  For more information, contact Oakcliff Training Director Ethan Johnson at training@oakcliffsailing.org or Dawn Riley at race@oakcliffsailing.org.

Images courtesy of Lexi Pline/ Oakcliff Sailing

About Oakcliff Sailing

Oakcliff Sailing was founded in 2010 as a not-for-profit sailing centre by Hunt and Betsy Lawrence in order to raise the caliber of sailing in the United States. Managed by renowned America’s Cup and Volvo Ocean Race sailor Dawn Riley, Oakcliff has become a world class training center that has graduated over 300 sailors. The centre has a growing fleet of dinghies and yachts from Olympic classes to match racing keelboats and high performance racing yachts. Alongside its educational, one-design, offshore and Olympic development programs, Oakcliff runs a robust program for its supporters with casual evening racing, coached evening match racing and weekend regattas. Oakcliff partners closely with the US Sailing and Olympic Development Teams and regularly hosts training camps and development regattas to assist the US Olympic sailing development. www.oakcliffsailing.org

About the World Match Racing Tour

Founded in 2000, the World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) promotes the sport of match racing around the world and is the longest running global professional series in the sport of sailing. The World Tour represents a series of independently organised and officially sanctioned match racing events. The WMRT is awarded ‘Special Event’ status by the sport’s world governing body – World Sailing – and the winner of the WMRT each year is crowned World Sailing Match Racing World Champion. Previous Champions include Bertrand Pace (FRA), Sir Ben Ainslie (GBR), Jesper Radich (DEN), Magnus Holmberg (SWE), Peter Holmberg (ISV), Peter Gilmour (AUS), Ian Williams (GBR), Adam Minoprio (NZL), Taylor Canfield (ISV), Phil Robertson (NZL) and Torvar Mirsky (AUS). The WMRT is a match racing competition with racing taking place in identically supplied racing yachts which change for each event and which place a firm focus on teamwork, strategy and skill. Racing takes place close to shore to create stadium-style viewing for spectators. Since 2000, the World Match Racing Tour and its events have awarded over USD23million in prize money to sailors which has helped to contribute to the career pathway of many of today’s professional sailors. www.wmrt.com