Gulf Coast Team Take First Place at 2022 U.S. Adult Sailing Championships 

Andrew Eagan, Jackson Benvenutti, and Christopher Alexander, winners of the 2022 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship. US Sailing / Lexi Pline

BAY SAINT LOUIS, MISSISSIPPI (October 30, 2022) – Nine teams representing Regional Sailing Associations across the country were challenged with conditions from light and shifty to big breeze and storms over four days of racing on Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi.

Locals Jackson Benvenutti, Andrew Eagan, and Christopher Alexander, representing the Gulf Yachting Association, sailed consistently through all conditions to secure the Clifford D. Mallory Trophy by eight points. The team sails together regularly – including a win at the recent Viper 640 North Americans – allowing them to hone their boat handling and minimize mistakes.

“This regatta had a great group of competitors, so it was definitely a tough regatta,” said Benvenutti. “We were very consistent and kept the ‘never let up’ mentality. The Adult Sailing Championship is different event than a normal one design regatta, with fewer boats and without the ability to tune the rigs, so you’re focusing more out of the boat than in the boat. 

It’s great to see Bay Waveland, my home club, host such a great event. They did an excellent job given the conditions that they had. It’s awesome that people from all over the country get a chance to sail at my home club through this event.”

Today was very frustrating, we’ve never seen it this shifty and up and down, it was crazy,” remarked Clinton Edwards, PRO and event co-chair. “In three days of racing, we went through the whole compass – we saw wind from every direction.

Also representing the host club as a last-minute entry, Zachary Fanberg, Sarah Taylor, and Eugene Schmitt were able to overcome a slow start to the event to take second place with 30 points. The Santa Cruz based team of Mike Holt, Steve Bourdow, and Bruce Edwards came in a close third with 34 points. Ed Feo was voted winner of the Staton J. Peele Sportsmanship Award

The event was hosted by Bay Waveland Yacht Club and the Gulf Yachting Association in Viper 640s, a three- to four-person sport keelboat. 

“It’s lots of fun getting to host this event and meet people from across the country,” said event co-chair Ann Edwards “It was exciting to have the Mallory back for the first time since 2009. We love continuing that tradition and look forward to hosting again!” 

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