HAMILTON, Bermuda (Oct. 25, 2020) — After a year in which too many regattas were postponed or cancelled due to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, the hope of International One-Design (IOD) sloops thrashing about Hamilton Harbour is anticipated by all associated with the 70th Bermuda Gold Cup and 2020 Open Match Racing Worlds, which begin tomorrow with gold and silver awaiting the winner at week’s end.
“Our schedule was affected quite a lot, like everyone,” said Eric Monnin of Switzerland, the world’s No. 1-ranked match racer and leading Bermuda Gold Cup veteran who’s making his 13th appearance. “We’ve done some sailing at home since June, but very little match racing. It’s very difficult to know where we stand with the others.”
In his first travel outside of Switzerland since the pandemic began, Monnin doesn’t feel threatened by the coronavirus. Everyone associated with the event had to get tested within one week of traveling to Bermuda and then again at Bermuda’s L.F. Wade International Airport upon arrival. All 69 sailors, race officials, umpires and support staff have tested negative with the regatta set to begin.
“I’m impressed with the efforts, it’s above expectations,” said Monnin. “Here on the island, the testing is organized very well. It’s much better than I thought. We’ll see how the week goes, but I think we’ll show the world that if you do things responsibly, it’s possible to host a world caliber regatta.