First established in 1986, what was then called the U.S. Independence Cup became US Sailing’s national championship for disabled sailors in 1989.
For many years it was organized by the Disabled Sailing Committee and was run in conjunction with the North American Challenge Cup, which is hosted by Chicago Yacht Club.In 2007, the regatta moved under the Championships division of US Sailing and was renamed the U.S. Disabled Sailing Championship.
On December 18, 2017, the U.S. Sailing Board of Directors approved a name change from The U.S. Disabled Championship to the U.S. Para Sailing Championship to keep in line with the World Sailing and the International Olympic Committee format.
The Chandler Hovey Jr. Trophy was donated at the 1994 Independence Cup by A.G.A. Correa and Co. to US Sailing. in honor of a true corinthian yachtsman Buzz Hovey, who competed on race courses as a national junior champion, skippered J-Boats, and with his family, campaigned the 12 Metre Easterner through the 1964 America’s Cup trials. Buzz Hovey moved beyond his disability to focus on his love for sailing, competition and family. “This trophy will be awarded annually to the two persons team that is declared the winner of the doublehanded class of the U.S. Para Sailing Championship.
The trophy is engraved:
“Buzz” Hovey, for whom the trophy is named, was active in 12 Metre racing in the ‘50’s and ‘60’s with the family-owned Twelve, Easterner. Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1947, he continued, nonetheless, to sail and race actively, especially in his Shields Class boat, until 1981 when he retired from the racing circuit.
To maintain the integrity of the trophy, it will remain on display at the National Governing Body of the sport – U.S. Sailing Association
Previous Award Recipients
- 2023 – Tim Brown, Shara Everhart Skeels: Martin 16
- 2022 – Shan McAdoo, Maureen McKinnon: Freedom Independence 20
- 2021 – E. Carwile LeRoy, Doug Horsey
- 2019 – Allen Fiske and Joe Cook: Freedom Independence 20
- 2018 – Christina Rubke and Kris Scheppe: RS Venture Connect
- 2015 – Ryan Porteous, Steven Muse
- 2013 – Sarah Everhart-Skeels, Gerry Tiernan
- 2012 – Michael Strahle, Donna DeMarest
- 2011 – Scott Whitman, Julia Dorsett – Brick, NJ
- 2010 – Scott Whitman, Julia Dorsett – Brick, NJ
- 2009 – Jennifer French, Roger Cleworth St. Petersburg, FL
- 2008 – John McRoberts & Stacey Louttit- Victoria, BC, CAN
U.S. Independence & North American Challenge Cups
- 2007 – Karen Mitchell & JP Creignou – Deerfield Beach, FL/ St. Petersburg, FL
- 2006 – Karen Mitchell & Michael Grimm – Deerfield Beach, FL/ Miami Beach, FL
- 2005 – Karen Mitchell & Kerry Gruson -Deerfield Beach, FL
- 2004 – Karen Mitchell & Kerry Gruson -Deerfield Beach, FL
- 2003 – Karen Mitchell & Kerry Gruson -Deerfield Beach, FL
- 2002 – John Kostanecki and Jim Leatherman
- 2001 – Peter Benson – Middletown, RI, Matt Sullivan -Coventry, RI
- 2000 – Peter Benson – Middletown, RI, Matt Sullivan -Coventry, RI
- 1999 – John Kostanecki – Naperville, IL, Gerry Dahl – Chicago, IL
- 1998 – John Kostanecki – Naperville, IL, Gerry Dahl – Chicago, IL
- 1997 – John Ross-Duggan, David Schroeder – Orlando, FL
- 1996 – John Ross-Duggan, Waldo Esparza – Orlando, FL
- 1995 – Robie Pierce, Newport, RI
- 1994 – John Yount, Hortensia Soler – Miami, FL
- 1993 – Robie Pierce, Richard Fucci – Newport, RI
- 1992 – Carl Olsson, John Carter – New York, NY
- 1991 – Robie Pierce, Nick Bryant-Brown – Newport, RI
- 1990 – Carl Olsson, Richard Fucci, Gregg Templeton – Larchmont, NY