NEWPORT, R.I. (August 17, 2016) — For John Storck, the path to the 2016 Resolute Cup, the unofficial keelboat championship for American yacht clubs, had a most ordinary point of origination: the family dinner table.
“I am lucky enough to be born into this family where technical sailing speak is common dinner conversation,” says Storck, who will compete for the Storm Trysail Club (Larchmont, N.Y.) alongside two of his siblings, Erik Storck and Kaitlin Storck Potts (above with their father, John Storck Jr., at the 2010 J/80 North American Championship). “We have done plenty of sailing apart, but we have done so much more sailing together. If there are any arguments in the boat, the cool thing about our family is that you get over it really fast, there is no grudge holding.”
The 2016 Resolute Cup will be sailed September 12 to 17 out of New York Yacht Club Harbour Court in Newport, R.I. The fourth running of the biennial event is sponsored by Porsche Cars North America, Helly Hansen and Melges Performance Sailboats. It will once again provide a pathway for U.S. yacht clubs looking to qualify for the Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, the premiere international competition for Corinthian sailors.
“In some ways, maybe that’s the whole magic of what [New York Yacht Club is] doing,” says Douglas Wefer, who is sailing for Sea Cliff (N.Y.) Yacht Club with his two sons, Matthew and Paul. “We are probably going through the same things a lot of clubs are, other than the mega clubs, we are trying to balance families in sailing. I’ve been working hard to build the sailing and build the community. This struck me as an opportunity to promote the community and to have the club really get behind a major sailing accomplishment or activity.”
That confluence of sailing and family is a strong theme in the Resolute Cup fleet, with no fewer than seven of the 28 crews featuring some form of family connection. New Bedford Yacht Club (South Dartmouth, Mass.) is once again sending the husband and wife duo of Liz and Andrew Herlihy. Sandusky (Ohio) Sailing Club will also have crewmates bound by marriage, Kathy and Sjoerd-Jan Vanderhorst. Bayview Yacht Club (Detroit) will be represented by Marc Hollerbach and his son Nathan. John Potter is bringing his young daughter Emily to compete under the Beaufort (S.C.) Yacht and Sailing Club burgee. Brothers Marcus and Andrew Eagan will be representing Southern Yacht Club (New Orleans).
“[My son] was a collegiate all-American and a great sailor so just sailing with him in general gives me an advantage, and we sail together a lot,” says Marc Hollerbach, at left with his son Nathan. “I love to sail with my kids, I had hoped to sail will all my sons, but only one could make it.”
The Resolute Cup is a unique event for a number of reasons. Two different fleets of boats, Melges 20s and Sonars, will be used for the competition. All equipment, including the sails, is provided and the rig tuning will be standardized across both fleets. Each competitor must be a World Sailing Group 1 (amateur) sailor, and a full member of the club he or she represents.
The event provides one of the most level playing fields in the sport of sailing and rewards teams that come in prepared but can also learn and adjust on the fly. John Storck, for one, is hoping that his close bonds with his crewmates will be to their advantage.
“I think there are so many good teams coming with so many varieties of backgrounds,” he says. “There are many different advantages. For us it might be communication-type stuff, others it might be familiarity with the boats, others it might be familiarity with the conditions and weather.”
Teams will sail a two-day qualifying series on Narragansett Bay in both Sonars and Melges 20s. The top teams will move to the two-day Championship Series in Melges 20s, and the remaining teams will compete for Silver Fleet honors in Sonars.
Live race tracking for the duration of the regatta and a live webcast of the event’s final two days will enable friends, family and fellow club members around the country to follow along as their team competes for one of sailing’s most challenging Corinthian honors.
2016 Resolute Cup
New York Yacht Club Harbour Court, Newport, R.I.
Sept. 12 to 17
American Yacht Club (Rye, N.Y.); Austin (Texas) Yacht Club; Balboa Yacht Club (Corona del Mar, Calif.); Bayview Yacht Club (Detroit); Beaufort (S.C.) Yacht and Sailing Club; Beverly Yacht Club (Marion, Mass.); Carolina Yacht Club (Charleston, S.C.); Chicago Yacht Club; The Cleveland Yachting Club (Rocky River, Ohio); Coral Reef Yacht Club (Miami); Corinthian Yacht Club (Marblehead, Mass.); The Corinthian Yacht Club of Philadelphia (Essington, Penn.); Eastern Yacht Club (Marblehead, Mass.); Lake Geneva Yacht Club (Fontana, Wis.); Larchmont (N.Y.) Yacht Club; Nantucket (Mass.) Yacht Club; New Bedford Yacht Club (South Dartmouth, Mass.); New York Yacht Club; Newport Harbor Yacht Club (Newport Beach, Calif.); San Diego Yacht Club; Sandusky (Ohio) Sailing Club; Sea Cliff (N.Y.) Yacht Club; Shelter Island Yacht Club (Shelter Island Heights, N.Y.); Southern Yacht Club (New Orleans); St. Francis Yacht Club (San Francisco); Storm Trysail Club (Larchmont, N.Y.); Wadawanuck Club (Stonington, Conn.); Winnipesaukee Yacht Club (Gilford, N.H.)
Photo credits: © Fran Grenon/Spectrum Photo, © Peggy Walsh-Sarnecki
The Resolute Cup (trophy at right) is a biennial Corinthian competition among U.S. yacht clubs. The 2016 Resolute Cup will take place Sept. 12 to 17, out of the New York Yacht Club Harbour Court in Newport. R.I. The event is an evolution of the U.S. Qualifying Series for the Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, which was first held in 2010, and serves as a pathway for American yacht clubs seeking to compete in the Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, sailing's premiere international, Corinthian, one-design competition. Competitors in the 2016 Resolute Cup must be World Sailing Group 1 (amateur) sailors and members of the club that they represent. The competition is held in supplied Melges 20 and Sonar keelboats, with standardized sails and rigging, ensuring a true one-design competition where the skill of the sailors—their tactics, boat speed and teamwork—determines the final outcome. Past winners of the Resolute Cup include Newport Harbor Yacht Club (2014), Larchmont Yacht Club (2012) and Eastern Yacht Club (2010). www.ResoluteCup.c