Bermuda to take on world’s best sailors in SSL Gold Cup
Bermuda will compete in the Star Sailors League Gold Cup, a new international sporting event designed to determine the world’s best sailing nation.
The inaugural biennial event, which is scheduled to be held in Switzerland in 2022, between May and June, tests athletes’ skills by all sailing the same boat, eliminating technical or equipment advantage.
Bermuda’s national team, which will be captained by multiple times national champion Rockal Evans, with Emily Nagel as vice-captain, is one of 56 nations to enter the challenge on board an SSL 47, a One Design monohull provided by the event organisers, to level the playing field.
Bermuda will compete against world-class athletes from the America’s Cup, SailGP, the World Match Racing Tour and the Volvo Ocean Race. They include Tom Slingsby, Kyle Langford, Ian Williams and Ray Davies.
“We hope that this will be the first of many years of Bermuda competing in the SSL Gold Cup,” Evans said. “This team will pave the way for more Bermudian sailors in years to come to aspire to compete at this level against the world’s best.
“If it wasn’t for SSL, Bermuda wouldn’t have the opportunity to sail against the most talented sailors on a level playing field.
“This will show the natural talent of each country and each sailor, so it doesn’t come down to research and development or who has the money to build the fastest boat or have the best gear.
“This event will grow sailing in emerging nations because for the first time we don’t need to have the scale of funding of these bigger sailing nations to actually be competitive.”
Team selection is based on SSL criteria and Captain’s Pick criteria, including training commitment and performance.
The training team includes Kelsey Durham, Adriana Penruddocke, Michael Wollmann, Dale Brangman, Peter Dill, Tre Maxwell, Joshua Greenslade, Philip Worboys, Thomas Penruddocke, Campbell Patton, Somers Kemp, Benn Smith, and Adam Barboza.
Other eligible Bermudian sailors can also apply to be a part of the training team.
The SSL is a global inshore sailing circuit launched by Olympic athletes in 2012 — by sailors for sailors.