Please select your home edition
Edition
Sea Sure 2020 - LEADERBOARD

A decade of persistence lifts Eastern Yacht Club to first Morgan Cup win

by New York Yacht Club 14 Aug 16:34 PDT August 12-14, 2022
2022 Morgan Cup © Stuart Wemple

For the second straight summer, a team from Marblehead, Mass., has become a first-time winner of the prestigious Morgan Cup. Earlier today, Eastern Yacht Club claimed the trophy, following up on the win last summer by neighboring Corinthian Yacht Club. The two clubs are just a stone's throw apart on Marblehead Neck. Corinthian Yacht Club finished second, with St. Francis Yacht Club of San Francisco third and New York Yacht Club-Levesque rounding out the top four.

As was the case last year, the win by Eastern is the result of a lot of hard work and a steady progression up the ranks of keelboat team racing.

"A decade ago Eastern wasn't doing any team racing," says Clinton Hayes, the team captain for Eastern Yacht Club. "I remember when we got our first invite to the Morgan, and we finished last, then third to last. We just put a lot of effort into this event. New York Yacht Club putting in all the effort to make this such a world-class event makes all of us sailors try so hard and show up year after year."

The New York Yacht Club helped usher in a new era of adult team racing with the creation of the New York Yacht Club Invitational Team Race Regatta for the Commodore George R. Hinman Masters Trophy in 2000. That race, which requires skippers to be at least 45 years of age and crew to be over 40, was soon followed by the New York Yacht Club Invitational Team Race Regatta for the Morgan Cup, an all-ages event, in 2003 and, in 2010, the New York Yacht Club Grandmasters Team Race Regatta, which mandates skippers be at least 60 years of age and crew at least 50. The three team races are traditionally held over consecutive weekends in August at the New York Yacht Club Harbour Court, using the Club's fleet of 22 Sonar keelboats, and annually attract some of the best adult team racers in the United States and Europe. New York Yacht Club Regatta Association sponsors for 2022 are Helly Hansen, Hammetts Hotel and Safe Harbor Marinas.

While the race committee ran just shy of 100 races over the three days of the Morgan Cup, it wasn't easy. Light and fickle winds made Day 1 of the regatta quite difficult as the race committee had to keep adjusting the course, and the competitors tried to maintain focus through lengthy delays.

"The first day was a really long day with a long delay," says Hayes. "Everyone got off the water, and we were totally burnt. The sun and the waiting around makes it really challenging."

Nonetheless, Eastern Yacht Club finished Day 1 with seven wins against a single loss.

"A big thing was just avoiding mistakes," says Hayes. "In light air people tend to over team race, a lot of people just get passed. So we were focused on passing other boats, sailing our boats really well, really fast, especially on the downwinds, and avoiding those stupid, unforced errors."

More consistent sailing on Day 2 and early on Day 3 put Eastern into a strong position after two complete round-robins, with 14 wins, from 18 races, and a two-point advantage over the three teams tied for second. With the typical Newport seabreeze finally filling in, those four teams did a single, gold-fleet round robin to close out the regatta.

Corinthian beat Eastern in the opening race of the Gold Round Robin to reduce Eastern's lead to just a single point. And since Corinthian had beaten Eastern each of the three times the two teams had sailed against one another—and therefore controlled the tie-breaker—there was effectively no margin for error.

"We knew it was close," says Hayes of the standings heading into the final races. "We didn't look at the exact scores, we just assumed we needed to win a majority of the races in the [Gold Fleet Round Robin]. All three races were barn burners, really tight. We were lucky to come away with two out of three."

Many of the competitors in the Morgan Cup will return on Friday for the Hinman Trophy, for which skippers must be over 45 and crews over 40. The Grandmasters Team Race—skippers 60 or older and crews 50 or older—will take place August 26 to 28.

New York Yacht Club Invitational Team Race Regatta for the Morgan Cup - Final Results:

1. Eastern Yacht Club, Marblehead, Mass., 16 points
2. Corinthian Yacht Club, Marblehead, Mass., 15 points
3. St. Francis Yacht Club, San Francisco, Calif., 13 points
4. New York (N.Y.) Yacht Club—Levesque, 12 points;
5. Newport Harbor Yacht Club, Newport Beach, Calif., 10 points
6. New York (N.Y.) Yacht Club—Potts, 9 points
7. Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club, 8 points
8. San Diego (Calif.) Yacht Club, 7 points
9. Larchmont (N.Y.) Yacht Club, 3 points
10. Bristol (R.I.) Yacht Club, 3 points

Race-by-race results available here.

Related Articles

IC37 North American Championship
Gamecock struts to the win A year of hard work paid off for Peter McClennen's Gamecock team (above) as they blitzed a competitive 20-boat fleet to win the 2022 IC37 North American Championship. Posted on 26 Sep
IC37 North American Championship preview
Set to be a hard-fought showdown on Narragansett Bay this weekend Over the four IC37 regattas this summer held in Newport, Rhode Island, there have been four different winners and one-third of the 24-boat fleet have stood on the podium. Posted on 22 Sep
2022 Resolute Cup at New York Yacht Club overall
Corinthian Yacht Club wins with a perfect final day After displaying remarkable consistency across a range of conditions over the first three days of the 2022 Resolute Cup, Corinthian Yacht Club of Marblehead, Mass., decided to dispense with the pleasantries. Posted on 18 Sep
2022 Resolute Cup at New York Yacht Club Day 3
Patience rewards Corinthian and San Diego On a shifty, puffy and generally frustrating day on Narragansett Bay, the key to success in the 2022 Resolute Cup was patience and conservative decision making, at least according to the two skippers currently occupying the top two slots. Posted on 17 Sep
2022 Resolute Cup at New York Yacht Club Day 2
Shelter Island and Larchmont Rise to the Occasion, Punch Ticket to Gold Fleet Mike Tyson is famous for saying that everyone has a good plan until they get punched in the mouth. For the Shelter Island YC team competing in the 2022 Resolute Cup, Day 1 wasn't much different than a stiff jab from the former heavyweight champion. Posted on 16 Sep
2022 Resolute Cup at New York Yacht Club Day 1
San Diego, Lakewood take early lead in Blue Fleet Experience counts at the Resolute Cup. We've said it before and we'll say it again. But it's more convincing to look at the hard evidence. Posted on 15 Sep
Ready or Not, Here Comes the Resolute Cup
Teams representing 23 top yacht clubs from around the country will commence battle At 10:30 am tomorrow, teams representing 23 top yacht clubs from around the country will commence battle in pursuit of the Resolute Cup, one of sailing's most prestigious Corinthian trophies. Posted on 14 Sep
Trio of brothers powers Storm Trysail entry
Storm Trysail team's sixth Resolute Cup campaign aims for the podium One drawback to a club building a sterling reputation as one of the finest regatta organizers in the United States is that the collective sailing skill of its members can fly under the radar. Posted on 2 Sep
2022 NYYC Grandmasters Team Race Regatta
Texas Corinthian Yacht Club successfully defends the title Respect runs through the Grandmasters Team Race like a river through a western valley. It's an essential component of the regatta, binding together the sailors Posted on 29 Aug
Rookie Clubs reach for the podium at Resolute Cup
First-time clubs look to upset the form guide One surefire way to gauge the quality of any sailing event is by the number of repeat participants. NYYC's Resolute Cup, Corinthian Championship for U.S. Yacht Clubs has one of the highest rates of returning competitors of any sailing event in the country Posted on 25 Aug
Lloyd Stevenson - Artnautica60 728x90px BOTTOMHella Dual Colour Floodlights - 728 x 90px - 1 jpg BottomSOUTHERN-SPARS-AGLAIA-SPARS_728X90 Bottom