Please select your home edition
Edition
P&B 2019 - Leaderboard

Lees crowned 2018 National Match Racing Champion in thrilling final as new season kicks off

by Will Carson 14 Dec 2018 05:25 PST 8-9 December 2018
RYA National Match Racing Championship 2018 Final © Jack Fenwick / RYA

Following a thrilling climax to the 2018 RYA Match Racing season which saw Mark Lees take the title at the National Match Racing Championship Final, the new and expanded RYA match racing season is already underway with an increased number of opportunities for sailors of all levels to get involved and entries now open for the 2019 Championship.

Lees, sailing with Toby Mumford, Toby Yeabsley and Tom Forrester-Coles, took the National Championship crown for the first time following a nail-biting contest at Queen Mary Sailing Club with a five-way tie at the end of the round robin.

Taking their places in the knock out stages, Christian Hamilton led Lees on a tie break with Tarra Gill-Taylor in third, Matt Whitfield fourth and Nicholas Wilkinson fifth. Hamilton, Lees, Gill Taylor and Whitfield all swept their Quarter Final matches 2-0 to take their places in the Semi-finals. Hamilton beat Whitfield 3-0 to progress to the final while Lees had a tougher battle against Gill-Taylor, slipping behind 2-1 before coming back to win 3-2. Buoyed by that victory, Lees was decisive in beating Hamilton 2-0 to seal victory in the final.

“It’s been a long time since we’ve been match racing so it was good to get lots of racing in on the first day and we spent a lot of time getting better,” said Lees. “We were always looking forward to the next race and thankfully we did get better. Everyone we raced in the knock out stages presented different challenges so today was the first time we managed to get it all right which was great.”

Meanwhile the new season got underway with a double-header at opposite ends of the country: the Moody Decking Schools Match Racing Championship in Weymouth and Winter Match Racing 1 in Port Edgar.

Oliver Perkins led Royal Grammar School Guildford to victory against eight other teams in strong winds in Weymouth to take the Moody Decking Championship title. Taking on schools from all over the country, Perkins held a narrow lead at the end of the first day of competition but was undefeated on Day 2 to take the win. Barty Gray (Cokethorpe School) was second with James Percival-Cooke (Royal Hospital School) in third.

At the other end of the country, eight teams from both north and south of the border were contesting Winter Match Racing 1 at Port Edgar. Alison Morrish, one of three female helms, won all three of her races in the shortened round robin taking victory over, Brendon Lynch in second, Matt Lloyd third and Sophie Taylor in fourth. All the teams were supported throughout the event by RYA coach Kate MacGregor who represented Team GB at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Entries are now open for the 2019 National Match Racing Championship with an increased number of opportunities to take part on offer. Three open winter match racing events will be taking place at Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy in January, February and March and a women’s winter match racing event has been added to the programme in March to meet an increased demand from female sailors.

2019 will also see the National Match Racing Championship move to the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club in Burnham racing in the club’s new fleet of 707s

Full details are available on the RYA website here.

Related Articles

Event No.12 joining Match Race Super League 2019
12 events worldwide in 10 countries on four continents The Match Race Super League is proud to announce that the AIRCALIN Match Race in Noumea (NCL) will be the sixth event of the 2019 season, making it to 12 events worldwide in 10 countries on four continents. Posted on 19 Feb
J/22 U.S. Youth Match Racing announcement
Come one, come all! All youth sailors between 16 and 20 years old are invited to apply The Championship features world-class coaching and race management and serves as an outstanding training ground for young sailors who are passionate about match racing and focused on competing at the next level. Posted on 17 Feb
2019 Youth Match Racing Worlds NoR published
To be held in Ekaterinburg, Russia from 12-17 August The Notice of Race for the 2019 Youth Match Racing World Championship which will be held in Ekaterinburg, Russia from 12-17 August 2019 has been published. Posted on 15 Feb
Bembridge Illusion Match Racing Championship
Plan B put in place during Saturday's high winds The big question throughout most of last week was whether the strong winds were going to abate enough over the weekend to allow this year's Illusion Match Racing to be run. Posted on 11 Feb
Canfield returns to defend his title
Line-up set for 55th LBYC Congressional Cup Reigning Congressional Cup Champion Taylor Canfield, USA, has announced he will return to the course April 3 to 7, to defend his title in this sensational Grade One Match Race regatta hosted by Long Beach Yacht Club. Posted on 9 Feb
RNZYS wins the Hardy Cup 2019
Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron's match racing prowess proved unrivalled For the fifth time since the inaugural Hardy Cup Sydney International Match Racing Regatta in 2001, the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron's match racing prowess proved unrivalled on Sydney Harbour. Posted on 7 Feb
2019 Argo Group Gold Cup draws sterling field
Lure of venerable King Edward VII Gold Cup continues to attract world's best talent A sterling collection of past champions that also includes the top three skippers in the World Match Race Rankings, the reigning Open, Women's and Youth World champions and the America's Cup Challenger of Record are among the first eight entrants. Posted on 6 Feb
Detroit Cup added to Match Race Super League
Sixth stop on the tour, in August The Bayview Yacht Club, organizers of the Detroit Cup, a grade 2 event with a 12 year history in match racing has joined the Match Race Super League 2019, making it 11 events worldwide on the League. Posted on 5 Feb
Kiwis lead Hardy Cup at mid-way point
Team skippered by Nick Egnot-Johnson leads the international field At the mid-way point in the Hardy Cup match racing regatta, the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron's team skippered by Nick Egnot-Johnson lead the international field of 11 teams. Posted on 5 Feb
Warren Jones International Youth Regatta overall
2019 City of Perth Festival of Sail - Day 6 wrap up The semi-finals started in 8-10 knots on a short race course with many spectator boats making for interesting obstacles. The semi finals were a first to two format with the winners racing each other in the final. Posted on 4 Feb
SCRW2019 FooterWindBot-COACH-660x82Melges 14 2019 Footer