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12 Metre Worlds to return to Newport, R.I. in 2022

by Barby MacGowan 3 Dec 2020 07:16 PST 19-24 September 2022
2019's 12mR World Champion (Traditional Division) Columbia (US-16) will defend her title, led by 12 Meter Charters owner Kevin Hegarty. © Chris Tucker

Following the resounding success of the 2019 12mR World Championship held in Newport, R.I., the International Twelve Metre Association (ITMA) has again selected America's City by the Sea as the venue for the 2022 12mR World Championship.

"We expect an enthusiastic response and a strong turnout by our dedicated 12mR fleet members who always relish sailing out of Newport," said ITMA President Paul Buttrose.

Scheduled for September 19-24, 2022, the regatta will be held during the traditional 12 Metre sailing season established during 25 years (1958-1983) of America's Cup competition in the waters off Newport, R.I. Many of the 12s competing were specifically designed for Rhode Island Sound's early autumn weather conditions.

Set against the same backdrop, the 2022 event will re-kindle iconic America's Cup competition between numerous Auld Mug Defenders including US-16 Columbia (1958), US-17 Weatherly (1962), US-22 Intrepid (1967 and 1970), US-26 Courageous (1974 and 1977) and US-30 Freedom (1980).

The 12 Metre Yacht Club Newport Station, the official home of ITMA's North American 12mR fleet, will coordinate all event activities in partnership with Ida Lewis Yacht Club, repeating their award-winning* Race Management role. "Ida Lewis Yacht Club is pleased to be the Organizing Authority for the 2022 12 Metre World Championship," said Ida Lewis Yacht Club's current Vice Commodore Steven MacGillivray. "Our Race Committee, Flag Officers and membership look forward to an exciting and fair regatta for all competitors."

*U.S. Sailing awarded their prestigious St. Petersburg Trophy to the Ida Lewis Yacht Club for excellence in Race Management as voted by 2019 12mR Worlds competitors.

After several changes of ownership throughout the 12mR fleet, a new guard of Modern Division teams will meet on the Worlds racecourse. They include Enterprise (US-27), raced by Peter Askew's renowned "Wizard" team and Freedom (US-30), now owned by the accomplished "Sled" team's Takashi Okura. In the Grand Prix Division, 2019 Worlds second- and third-place winners -- Patricio Bertelli's Kookaburra II (KA-12) and Gunther Buerman's New Zealand (KZ-3) -- will again face off for the top podium position.

Recent 12mR World Champions expected to defend their titles include 2019 Modern Division winner Challenge XII (KA-10), owned by Jack LeFort, who also serves as Commodore of the 12 Metre Yacht Club Newport Station. "There is new energy and great momentum building in the 12mR Class," said LeFort. "In Newport, we are excited to return to the race course to compete with old rivals and new challengers next season and through the 2022 Worlds."

In the interim, all eyes are on Helsinki where the 2021 12mR World Championship will be hosted by Finland's premier yacht club, the Nyländska Jaktklubben (NJK) from August 12-24, 2021.

For more information please visit 12mrworlds.com

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