Cal YC Squad Wins Women’s Match Race Championship

Katja Sertl, Beka Schiff, Ali Blumental, and Allie Blecher, winners of the 2022 U.S. Women’s Match Racing Championship.
US Sailing / Amalia Infante

Allie Blecher and her team from California Yacht Club claimed their second U.S. Women’s Match Racing Championship at Seawanhaka Corinthian YC, besting last year’s runner-up Janel Zarkowsky and her team from Scuttlebutt Sailing Club/Storm Trysail in the finals 3-0.

As Blecher has already won her berth to the 2022 Women’s World Match Racing Championships this November in Auckland, New Zealand, Zarkowsky will receive an invite for her second-place finish. 

Event reigning champion Nicole Breault, of St. Francis YC, bested last year’s third place finisher Bridget Groble and the Bow Down racing team in the Petit Finals, taking third overall. Breault will be joining Blecher at the 2022 Women’s World Match Racing Championships, having qualified because of her World Sailing ranking. 

“For us it’s always about communication, staying heads out of the boat and connecting the dots,” said Blecher. “It was a tricky event – sometimes you had to leave your guy to head for pressure, and it would be well worth it.”

After three days of light mornings, shifting to a Long Island Sound sea breeze in the afternoons, race committee was able to race a round robin, consolation round robin, semifinals, and finals for a total of 70 races. From match racing rookies to seasoned veterans, a multitude of sailors were in attendance with a large focus on learning and uplifting female sailors.
US Sailing’s 2022 Women’s Match Race Championship action at Seawanhaka Corinthian YC.
US Sailing / Amalia Infante

“My favorite thing about the women’s match racing series is that everyone is really willing to work together to get better,” said Ali Blumenthal, a member of winning Team BAAM. “There’s no ‘every man for themselves’ out on the water or on land, so it is a wonderful opportunity for women of any ability to get into match racing because everyone wants to share information and make the fleet better.”