International Women’s Keelboat Championship
American Yacht Club
August 14 - 20, 2016
for the Bengt Julin Trophy
- Race format: Based on the Championship League popular in Europe – short flights of 12 boats each with races lasting about 10-15 minutes.
- Selection by application/resume. Application fee is refundable if not accepted.
- Twenty-four teams from around the world will be invited to compete, with the intention of an even ratio of North American and intercontinental teams.
- The Championship will cycle to international venues in future years.
- The Magenta Project will host a clinic led by three time International Women's Keelboat Champion, Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year, and Olympian Sally Barkow on Monday 15 August.
- All racing held close to shore
- Provided boats
- All boats have the same rigging and sails
- 10- to 15-minute races
- Windward/Leeward courses
- Each flight of 12 teams race two races in a row, followed by a rotation
- On the water judging
- All boats will race against each other and are scored against each other
Inaugurated in 1985 at the instigation of US Sailing's Women’s Championship Committee, of which Helen K. Ingerson was a long-time Chair, the International Women’s Keelboat Championship quickly became the premier women’s sailing event in the U.S. and worldwide. Held biennially, the event provides women keelboat and offshore sailors high quality racing and an opportunity to compete with the top national and international sailors. The Ida Lewis Yacht Club, Newport, RI became host for the event and hosted the championship until 2001, when it began to move around the country. Rolex Watch, U.S.A. Inc. - sponsor at its inception - subsequently became the title sponsor until 2013.
The trophy is named for Bengt Julin, an international judge and strong supporter of women’s sailing. A modest man and sailing philanthropist, Julin championed the event from its inception and was instrumental in making it an international competition. Julin presented the very first trophy to Betsy Alison and retired the original to her after she had won it three times consecutively. Alison of Newport R.I. had an unbroken winning streak competing against teams from a dozen or more nations from 1991 through 1997. In 2007, Sally Barkow matched Alison by winning the championship for the third time.