Shuffled standings at Congressional Cup

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Long Beach, CA (April 3, 2019) – It’s been 10 years since Johnie Berntsson (SWE) won the Congressional Cup, but if today’s opener is any indicator, he could be celebrating his decennial anniversary with another Crimson Blazer.

The Berntsson Sailing Team looked confident and strong in their bright orange jerseys as they routed the competition at the 55th edition of the Congressional Cup Grade One match race regatta.

In mild conditions, with winds of 6 to 10 knots, flat water and blue skies, results were random as the round robin series got underway with number-one-ranked Ian Willams (GBR) and defending champion Taylor Canfield (USA) both accruing uncharacteristic losses.

But while several past Congressional Cup titleholders struggled, newcomer Nick Egnot-Johnson (NZL) sat in second place. Egnot-Johnson, 20, is the winner of the 2019 Nespresso Youth International Match Racing Cup and last year’s Oakcliff International Grade 2 regatta.

As victor in the US Grand Slam Series in September, he received an invitation to Congressional Cup, hand delivered by Chairman Arleen Tolle and LBYC Commodore Camille Daniels.

“It’s the most prestigious event, a top level match race regatta, so such a privilege to get invited and to sail against the world’s best,” Egnot-Johnson said.

In the past, he’s duelled mostly against fellow Aussies Will Boulden (AUS) and Price (AUS). “We do a lot of the match racing down in the Southern Hemisphere, but I haven’t got to race against the likes of Ian Williams, Taylor Canfield, and Johnie Berntsson – the big names,” he said. “It’s cool be able to line up and see how we go against these guys.”

The 55th edition of the Congressional Cup Grade 1 competition is from April 3 to 7. The format will have all ten teams complete a double round robin qualifying stage to advance the top four to the knock out matches for the Semi-Final, Final, and Petit Final stage.

Source: sailingscuttlebutt / Betsy Crowfoot

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