Argo Group Gold Cup, hosted by Royal Bermuda Yacht Club in Hamilton, Bermuda is being held 7th to 13th Oct, 2013. The Argo Group Gold Cup Sailing Instructions have been posted on the event website and with them the all important 10-team Groups for the qualifying Round Robin have been set.
Taylor Canfield (USVI) checks the time before the start of the final match with Johnie Berntsson (SWE) in the finals of the Argo Gold Cup 2012.
Taylor Canfield (ISV) USone, the reigning champion and #1 in the ISAF Open Rankings leads Group 1. Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar, #2 by ISAF, current leader on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour heads up Group 2. Both are past King Edward VII Gold Cup winners.
The unranked ‘wildcard’ Sir Ben Ainslie (GBR) Ben Ainslie Racing Team (BART), sponsored by Argo Group— a two-time winner of the Gold Cup, five time Olympic medalist and 2013 America’s Cup winner— fell into Group 2 with countryman Williams. Mathieu Richard (FRA) GEFCO Match Racing Team, another previous Gold Cup winner, also landed in Group 2.
Ian Williams (GBR) and Adam Minoprio (NZ) at the the start of one of their matches. WIlliams won 3-0 and goes through to the Semis.©Charles Anderson, Bermuda 2012
Adam Minoprio (NZL) Team Alpari FX is seeded second in Group 1. He is ranked 33 by ISAF because he has been relatively inactive in match racing outside of the Tour events and hasn’t accumulated points. Minoprio is tied with Canfield in the number 2 spot on the Tour. He was knocked out in the 2012 Quarter Finals by Williams.
Also in Group 1 is Johnie Berntsson (SWE) Stena Sailing Team. He was the 2008 Gold Cup winner and was beaten by Canfield in the 2012 finals. Berntsson likes the IODs and will be looking for his first win on the Tour this year.
Stage 1 for the Gold Cup is the Qualifying Round-Robin. Each team will race each of the other teams in its group once. The top four from each group move up to the Quarter Final Series. The Quarter Finals are a ‘first to three points’ knock out series.
The winners in the Quarters move on to the Semi Finals. They are also ‘first to three points’ knock outs. The Quarter and Semi Finals are scheduled for Friday and Saturday. The ‘first to two points’ Petite Finals and ‘first to three points’ Finals are scheduled for Sunday.
Semi final racing between Ben Ainslie and Ian Williams. ©Charles Anderson