Balboa Yacht Club wins 51st Governor’s Cup

Christophe Killian defeats New Zealand challenger, delivers cup to host for first time since 1980.

NEWPORT BEACH — Christophe Killian was not yet born the last time a host club won a Governor’s Cup. Back then Jimmy Carter was president, The Empire Strikes Back was the top film at the box office, Magic Johnson was playing his rookie season with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Clippers called San Diego home.

Balboa Yacht Club became the first host organization to win the Governor’s Cup since 1980, as 20-year-old Killian defeated New Zealand’s Leonard Takahashi, 3-1, during the 51st Governor’s Cup International Youth Match Racing Championship.

Governor's Cup - Mary Longpre photoThe victory was reportedly accomplished in front a record number of spectator boats looking on at Newport Beach Harbor, July 22.

Killian won the first race before Takahashi responded right back with a win of his own. The 20-year-old American, however, would win the next two races to claim the Governor’s Cup.

Representing Balboa YC was Killian, Harrison Vandervort and Jack Martin; Takahashi, Ibuki Koizuni and Josh Wijohn raced for runner-ups Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron.

Del Rey Yacht Club, helmed by Christopher Weis, finished third. The final board was round out by Cruising Yacht Club of Australia in fourth, followed in order by Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club (Australia), Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club (Australia), Balboa YC’s second entry, Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron’s second entry, Cambridge University Cruising Club (Great Britain), Wessex Sailing Club (Great Britain), David Island Sailing Club (United States) and Newport Harbor Yacht Club (United States).

The Governor’s Cup is the world’s oldest youth regatta; it was held July 17-22 in Newport Beach.

Mary Longpre photo

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