Press Release April 1, 2016

52nd Annual Congressional Cupn hosted by Long Beach Yacht Club

APRIL 1, 2016 LONG BEACH, CALIF - - The 52nd annual Congressional Cup regatta is just around the corner!
But first: The Ficker Cup Presented by Porsche – a three-day match racing contest – will determine which two skippers will advance to the Congressional Cup … and who will go home.

Leading the charge at the April 1 to 3 Ficker Cup Presented by Porsche is Johnie Berntsson (SWE, World Sailing ranked 11): champion of the 2009 Congressional Cup and a perennial favorite at host Long Beach Yacht Club (LBYC). But there’s no telling what advantage local knowledge will bring to LBYC Sail-off winner Scott Dickson (USA, 388) and club member Dustin Durant (USA, 113); or to Steve Natvig (USA, 198), hot on his game following triumph in the recent California Dreamin’ Series.


Rounding out the field are super sailors Matthew Jerwood (AUS, 6) who finished fifth in the last month’s WMRT 2016 opener at Fremantle, Aus.; David Storrs (USA, 20); Peter Holz (USA, 38); and Evan Walker (AUS, 160). With this field of competitors, there’s no telling who will capure the Ficker Cup Presented by Porsche title this weekend!

Fair conditions are expected, with temperatures in the low 70°s (21-22°C) and average 10 knot breezes beneath sunny skies. Double-round robin racing will take place Friday and Saturday starting around noon daily; progressing to the semi final and final rounds Sunday April 3. The event is held adjacent Long Beach’ Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier for easy spectator access and viewing. The winner and first runner-up in this challenging mano-a-mano match race competition will each receive a berth in the prestigious Congressional Cup regatta, second stop in the esteemed World Match Racing Tour, April 6 to 10.

There, they will compete against a line-up that includes six of the world’s top 10 ranked skippers, including reigning WMRT Champion Ian Williams (GBR, 1) and two-time defending Congressional Cup champion Taylor Canfield (ISV, 2).  Get ready for 10 days of yacht racing excitement, in the waters of Southern California!

The Congressional Cup features five days of yacht racing at its finest, with the top World Sailing-ranked skippers vying for the esteemed Crimson Blazer – an honor bestowed to sailing icons like Dennis Conner, Dean Barker, Ken Read, Ted Turner, Taylor Canfield and more. Founded in 1965 and pioneering the concept of on-the-water umpiring, The Congressional Cup is regarded as the ‘granddaddy of match racing’ and is part of the World Match Racing Tour (WMRT). This intense round-the-world circuit kicked off early March in Fremantle, Australia, and concludes in July in Marstrand, Sweden; where one lucky sailor will earn a sizeable purse and bragging rights – as the number one skipper at the pinnacle of the sailing game.

The Ficker Cup Presented by Porsche is a highly regarded World Sailing Grade Two and WMRT event, established by LBYC in 1980 to honor Bill Ficker, winning skipper of the 1970 America’s Cup and Star boat champion. Etched on the trophy are the names of sailing greats like John Kostecki, Scott Dickson and Sally Barkow; plus Terry Hutchinson and Simone Ferrarese – both of whom went on to win the Congressional Cup in subsequent years.

View Congressional Cup racing at the Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier, located at 15 39th Place in Long Beach, CA. Parking and facilitates are available.

Follow the action online at; via Twitter @LBYCConCup;; and Instagram Long Beach Yacht Club
6201 E. Appian Way
Long Beach, CA 90803 USA#concup. For more information on WMRT please visit
Gold Level Sponsor
Porsche Cars North America

Spinnaker Sponsors
Farmers & Merchants Bank, Union Bank, Stella Artois Beer, Friedmans Appliance Kitchen Bath & Beds, Port of Long Beach, Newmeyer and Dillion Attorneys at Law, Team Campbell Logistics, LBYC Jr Sailing Program, Time Warner Cable, Gladstones Restaurant

General Sponsors
Gaylord Sportswear, PCS Group, Primary Color, Seven Angels Winery, Gelson's Markets, Mt Gay Rum, Café La Strada, Citywide Escrow, Club 100, World's Finest Chocolate, Catalina Yachts, OluKai Footwear, Travel host Magazine, Long Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau, Sea Bags

Betsy Crowfoot
Congressional Cup 2016 Press Officer

Long Beach Yacht Club
6201 E. Appian Way
Long Beach, CA 90803 USA
Email: or
Christine Delabre
Congressional Cup Comms Co-Chair
Long Beach Yacht Club
6201 E. Appian Way
Long Beach, CA 90803 USA
mobile 562-754-0999
Email or
Rick Roberts
Waterfront Director

Long Beach Yacht Club
6201 E. Appian Way
Long Beach, CA 90803 USA
Office 562-598-9401
Mobile 310-367-9079