Some of the best junior sailors from across America will soon be arriving in LaSalle, Michigan, for two of US SAILING's prestigious Junior National Championships.
The U.S. Junior Double-handed Championship, sailed in Club 420s for the Bemis Trophy, and the U.S. Junior Single-handed Championship, sailed in Lasers for the Smythe Trophy, will take place from 9 - 13 August at the North Cape Yacht Club in LaSalle, Michigan. Both events are sponsored by Vanguard Sailboats.
The two championships bring together about 60 junior sailors representing the best sailors who qualified by winning qualifying events at local and regional levels.
The Bemis Trophy is named after F. Gregg BEMIS who was best known for his work on the racing rules, which included a long tenure as chairman of the Appeals Committee. It was his leadership role in judging at junior and intercollegiate regattas that inspired a group of co-judges to donate in 1975 a trophy for double-handed junior sailing. Similar to the U.S. Junior Triple-handed Championship for the Sears Trophy, it is a ladder competition starting at the yacht club level. In 1999 it was expanded to include two teams per Area (groupings of Yacht Racing or District Associations).
The Smythe Trophy is named in honour of D. Verner SMYTHE. Single-handed sailing in the U.S., spurred by a growing interest in the Olympics, led to the addition in 1975 of a national single-handed championship and the donation of a trophy in honour of a long-time chairman of the Sears Trophy Committee, D. Verner SMYTHE. An active member of the Pequot Yacht Club at Southport, CT, he also served as Chairman for the Co-ordinating Committee of the North American Yacht Racing Union (NAYRU) championships. As a member, also, of the National Sea Scouts board, he was instrumental in persuading officials of the NAYRU to assist with their championship. Similar to the Bemis Trophy, the field was expanded to include two teams per Area.
The U.S. Junior Double-handed and Single-handed Championships are part of US SAILING's National Championships.