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Match Racing: Canfield on a roll with Argo Gold Cup victory following his Congressional Cup title

HAMILTON, BDA (#1010) – Taylor Canfield (USA) and his US-One Sailing Team are on a roll. They followed up their stirring, come-from-behind Congressional Cup victory by winning the 68th Argo Group Gold Cup with a 3-1 victory over Johnie Berntsson’s Swedish crew. The 29-year-old Canfield won the venerable King Edward VII Gold Cup for the second time, following his first win in 2012. Canfield’s crew included Mike Buckley (USA) as tactician, Victor Diaz de Leon (USA), George Peet (USA) and Erik Shampain (USA).

“We made huge gains through the week,” Canfield said. “The IOD is a tricky boat to sail and we had very tricky conditions this week. But the more time we spent in the boat the better we got. Full credit to Johnie and his team. They’re very experienced and have also won this trophy twice. We always have great matches against them.”

US-One won $30,000.

Despite the lopsided scoreline, the races featured lead changes, penalties and luffing matches, the hallmarks of good match racing.

Berntsson, sailing in his ninth Gold Cup, won the trophy in 2008 and ’14, and also has four top three finishes. Berntsson and crew Oscar Angervall (SWE), Björn Lundgren (SWE), and Robert Skarp (SWE) won $15,000.

“We’re a bit disappointed,” the 47-year-old Berntsson said. “Had a few decisions we made gone the other way we could’ve done a bit better. But Taylor and his team sailed very well. If you give them a slight chance they take it. We have full respect for them and congratulate them. It was a really good week of sailing.”

The victories in the Congressional Cup and Gold Cup are expected to help Buckley’s fledgling America’s Cup group with fundraising efforts. Canfield is expected to formally join Buckley’s group as skipper if it succeeds in raising enough money to challenge for the 36th America’s Cup at Auckland, NZL in 2021.

Taylor Canfield (left) and crew Victor Diaz de Leon, George Peet, Mike Buckley and Erik Shampain celebrate victory in the the 68th Argo Group Gold Cup hosted by the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Photo: Charles Anderson/RBYC