Victoria's best racing yachts are lining up this weekend for one of the State's oldest and most competitive interclub team events, the Association Cup or, to give its original name the Victorian Yacht Racing Association Challenge Cup.
The Royal Yacht Club of Victoria, whose teams have been successful for the past seven seasons, is again hosting the 2004 Association Cup.
Seven clubs have nominated three-boat teams, a total of 70 boats, in the various divisions - IRC A, IRC B, AMS A and AMS B for the Association Challenge Cup and for the Yachting Victoria President's Challenge Trophy and the Yachting Victoria Vice-President's Challenge Trophy.
The Royal Yacht of Victoria team of Chuzpah (Bruce TAYLOR), Adams Den (Graeme PAUL) and Toecutter (Robert HICK) in IRC A faces strong competition in defending the Cup this year again teams from Royal Geelong Yacht Club, Royal Brighton Yacht Club, the Ocean Racing Club of Victoria and Sandringham Yacht Club.
Sandringham's team is particularly strong, comprising Another Challenge (Lou Abrahams), Ticket of Leave (Kevan WOOD) and Bacardi (Graham AINLEY and John WILLIAMS) as is Royal Brighton with Brighton Star (David GOTZE), 38 South (Andrew PLYMPTON) and Full Bore (John MACADIE).
In addition to these clubs contesting the IRC divisions, Royal Melbourne Yacht Squadron has teams in AMS A and AMS B while Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron has nominated a team for the Yachting Victoria Vice-President;s Trophy division.
Two races are scheduled to be sailed on Saturday and two on Sunday, with fresh to strong breezes forecast for Port Phillip.