Twelve Open teams representing some of the best match racers in the world, both men and women, will put their skills to the test in the fifth Annual Carlos Aguilar Match Race (CAMR), presented by Ulysse Nardin/Trident Jewels & Time, from 5-9 December.
Homegrown talent will be among the toughest in the ISAF Grade 2 Open Match Racing event and include America's Cup winning helmsman and 2009 CAMR winner, Peter Holmberg.
Four top-ranked women skippers are confirmed to compete and include: Women's World #5 Sally Barkow (USA), who narrowly lost to Finland's Staffan Lindberg in last year's finals; Brazilian Women's World #15 Renata Decnop; World #26 Stephanie Roble (USA); and Danish World #30, Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen.
Other skippers that will vie for the championship include the USA's Dave Perry and Chris Poole, Germany's Sven-Eric Horsch, Brazil's Henrique Haddad, America's Dave Dellenbaugh and the Tyler Rice (ISV).
The winner of the British Virgin Islands' Pete Sheals Memorial Match Race, set for December 1 to 2, will also receive an invitation.
Past winners of the CAMR read like a Who's Who of sailing: Finland's Staffan Lindberg won the Open Division in 2011, while the USA's Genny Tulloch triumphed in 2008 and 2010 and France's Claire Leroy in 2009 in the Women's Division, and it was the USVI's Taylor Canfield in 2008 and Peter Holmberg in 2009 and Portugal's Alvaro Marinho/Seth Sailing Team in 2010 that won in the Open Division.
The race format will be a double round robin where the top three teams move forward. The remaining teams enter a repechage event where the top two teams advance. This offers everybody two tries to make it into the finals.
Exciting racing up and down the Charlotte Amalie waterfront is expected and spectators can enjoy tented bleacher seating. The CAMR will feature live commentary on the waterfront and a live webcast on www.carlosmatchrace.com
. Racing starts at 09:00 local time (GMT - 4 hrs) daily.
The St. Thomas Yacht Club (STYC) and the Virgin Islands Sailing Association (VISA) are organizing authorities for the CAMR, namesake for the late Carlos Aguilar, who was an avid sailor and match racer.