The ISAF Match Racing World Championship was first presented in 1988 and has been awarded every year since.
Up until 2005, the World Championship was decided at a single event. Skippers from the top of the ISAF World Match Racing Rankings where invited to compete along with the defending champion and a representative of the host nation. The event then held a round robin, followed by the knockout stages which culminated in the ISAF Match Racing World Championship final, where the gold medal winners were decided.
World Match Racing Tour
In January 2006, the ISAF Match Racing World Championship began a new era as ISAF partnered with the World Match Racing Tour, granting the Tour 'ISAF Special Event' status and awarding the ISAF Match Racing World Championship Trophy to the winner of the World Match Racing Tour.
From 2006 onwards, the ISAF Match Racing World Championship has been awarded to the winner of the World Match Racing Tour. The Tour is an annual series of events. Skippers scores points based on their finishing position at each event which added up form their points total in the World Championship standings.