Twelve youth match racing teams are confirmed for the 2023 Youth Match Racing World Championship on Dec. 11-15 in Sydney, Australia.
The Cruising Yacht Club of Australia (CYCA) will be hosting the event, and ten nations will be represented in the 10th edition, which will use the CYCA Youth Sailing Academy’s fleet of Elliott 7m keelboats. The class was formerly featured at the World Championship during the 2020 Harken Youth Match Racing World Championship, hosted by the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron.
The CYCA will field the two Australian entrants. Youth Match Racing World #2 Cole Tapper and World #3 Will Sargent. Tapper will be joined by Max Brennan, Hamish Vass, and Chelsea Williams. Sargent will line up with Eddie Reid, Paige Caldecoat, Hugo Leeming, and Joel Beashel onboard.
CYCA is the most successful Club to compete at the World Championship, winning world titles in 2017, 2019, and 2020 and a silver medal in 2016.
2022 World Champion Jeffrey Petersen from the U.S. will pose the biggest challenge for the Australians. The World #9 won the 2023 Governor’s Cup in late July, defeating Cole Tapper in the finals, and has also previously competed at the CYCA. Petersen will represent Balboa Yacht Club, which is fast approaching the CYCA’s World title record after winning the COVID-affected 2021 edition and 2022 Championship in France.
2022 Silver Medalist Marius Westerlind from Sweden will return for his fourth world title bid. Westerlind is ranked world 7th, finished 5th at the 2023 EUROSAF Match Racing Youth European Championship, and won the 2022 Swedish Youth Match Racing Championship.
France will have two teams competing, with selection for their representative teams to take place in late October when the French Youth Match Racing World Trials Regatta is conducted at the venue of the 2022 World Championship.
Jack Frewin will represent the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron. The Squadron also owns a fleet of Elliott 7m keelboats. Still, the New Zealanders will be challenged heading into the Worlds event, with Frewin gaining the rights to represent New Zealand after finishing second at the New Zealand Youth Match Racing Trials at the beginning of September. The World #25 went down to Max Brennan, Cole Tapper, and Hamish Vass from Australia in the Finals.
Ben Tylecote will represent Great Britain in his first youth match racing World Championship. Tylecote is fresh off several European wins, including the EUROSAF Match Racing Youth European Championship and the RYA Harken Youth Match Racing National Championship in July, competing in the Elliott 6m class.
Nicolas Bernal will be back for his second World Championship, representing Brazil at this year’s Championship. After finishing 6th at the 2023 Governor’s Cup and 9th at last year’s World Championship, the young Brazilian will look for steady improvements and strong winds in December.
Tom Higgins will represent Ireland and make his World Championship debut alongside Canada’s Richard Rychlik Jr and Japan’s Teruaki Shimakura. With an every-man-for-himself and last-chance-styled schedule for the regatta, these teams will have plenty of time to take points off the mainstream teams.
Qualifying racing is scheduled for Dec. 11-13, before the quarterfinals and semifinals on Dec. 14 and the grand finale on Dec 15.
For more information, please visit https://cyca.com.au/ymrwc-2023/.