Ten historic 12 Metres will compete in the World Championship starting Sunday 30 July with five days of racing.
Last held in the U.S. in Newport in 2019. They include four yachts that have successfully defended the America’s Cup: Columbia US16 – 1958, Weatherly US17 -1962, Courageous US26 – 1974/1977 and Freedom US-30 in 1980.
The America’s Cup was held in Newport 12 times from 1930 to 1983, and for nine of those times, from 1958 to 1983, the sailboat used to determine the winners was the 12 Metre.
On the 2023 roster, all but Weatherly and Nefertiti (US19) competed at the 2019 12 Metre Worlds, which saw Challenge XII (KA10) and Columbia each winning their respective divisions – Modern and Traditional.
In Modern Division, returning 12 Metres Courageous, Defender (US33), Freedom and Enterprise (US27) all will be sailed by new groups.
America’s Cup Hall of Fame member Dawn Riley will skipper Courageous with a young and diverse crew from Oakcliff Sailing aboard.
Andrew Rose will take the helm of Defender, while Japan’s Takashi Okura will lead his team aboard Freedom, and Peter Askew will skipper Enterprise.
In the Traditional Division, returning American Eagle (US21) will be skippered by Robert Morton, while newcomers to the Worlds, Weatherly and Nefertiti will be skippered by Steven Eddleston and Jack Klinck respectively.
In the Vintage Division, which will be combined with the Traditional Division for racing purposes here, Onawa (US6) returns with Mark Watson at the helm.
Seven of the 10 Twelves registered for the Worlds competed over four races in the 12-Metre Pre-Worlds.
Congratulations go to Enterprise, sailed by Peter Askew for winning the 12-Metre Pre-Worlds in the Modern Division.
Columbia, with Kevin Hegarty and Anthony Chiurco leading the charge, won the combined Traditional/Vintage class.
The Pre-worlds were part of Sail Newport’s 2023 Newport Regatta, held July 8-9 in Newport.
The 12 Metre World Championship will comprise of nine windward-leeward races scheduled over five days.
Yachts will sail either on Rhode Island Sound or north of Pell Bridge on Narragansett Bay.