Nearly 150 of the country's top youth sailors will soon arrive in Charleston, SC, to compete in the nation's premiere U.S. Youth Sailing Championship, organized by US SAILING.
From 18 to 24 June, these sailors, who are all under the age of 20, will race in Laser, Radial, and Club 420 fleets to compete for a National Champion title. Carolina Yacht Club and the College of Charleston are hosting the event. Demonstrating their commitment to youth sailing, Vanguard Sailboats, West Marine, and Gill are continuing as sponsors of the 2004 event.
The 149 competitors of the U.S. Youth Sailing Championship were selected based in sailing resumes from a list of nearly 300 applicants. This year's roster of sailors includes defending doublehanded champion Zack BROWN, who is returning with new crew, Graham BIEHL (both from San Diego, CA). Brown and Biehl are members of the US SAILING's US Youth World Team, as are fellow competitors Kaitlin STORCK (Huntington, NY) and her crew Leigh KEMPTON (Island Heights, NJ), who finished third at the event last year. The US Youth World Team will represent the USA at the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship in Poland early next month.
Several awards will be presented at the conclusion of the U.S. Youth Sailing Championship. The winner of the Laser class will receive the Robert L. Johnstone Trophy, which recognizes the pioneering in community sailing and popularizing of one-design sailing for which Bob Johnstone is known. Johnstone was the creator of the Youth Championship and was the first committee chairman. The winner of the Club 420 class will be awarded the Manton D. Scott Memorial Trophy, named in honour of an aspiring Olympic sailor whose life was cut short prematurely -- he was electrocuted in 1973 when the mast of his boat made contact with an overhead power line. The David M. Perry Sportsmanship Trophy was dedicated in 1989 and is awarded to the sailors who demonstrate good sportsmanship behaviour. The winners of this trophy are selected based on a vote by their fellow competitors.
For more information on the U.S. Youth Sailing Championship, including daily reports, results and pictures of the event, please visit the website at the address below.