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22nd Hobie 16 World Championship to be held at South Seas in 2019
August 8, 2018

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The Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau has announced that it will host the 22nd Hobie 16 World Championship next year.

This is the first time in 35 years that Hobie will host a World Championship in the U.S. The International Hobie Class Association will bring its prestigious sailing event to South Seas Island Resort on Captiva, Nov. 1-16, 2019.

Sailors from around the world will compete in three world championship disciplines: Women's, Youth and Open, and three additional disciplines; Masters Cup, Grand Masters Cup and Great Grand Masters Cup.

South Seas Island Resort will host more than 1,000 athletes and 336 teams on 60 new Hobie Cat racing catamaran sailboats for 16 sailing days. Sailors from 30 countries are expected to attend. In past world events, as many as 7,000 people have attended the championships.

"Lee County looks forward to hosting the 22nd Hobie World Championship in 2019," said Lee Board of County Commissioners and Tourist Development Council Chairman Cecil Pender-grass. "Our destination provides the perfect setting for sailors to compete at the highest level and for spectators to experience a world-class event."

Gov. Rick Scott indicated he is also excited about welcoming this renowned event to Florida.

"I'm thrilled that Southwest Florida was selected to host the thousands of participants, families and spectators from around the world for the Hobie 16 World Championship," Scott said. "In 2017, we welcomed a record-breaking 116.5 million visitors to our state and I look forward to a successful competition in Florida."

The Hobie 16 World Championships is the only sailboat class in the world to supply 60 brand-new identical Hobie Cats, 16-foot catamaran sailboats, for all competitors to race. Hobie Cat Company will provide the boats that will be used exclusively on the racecourse located just off Sunset Beach at the north end of Captiva Island. This ensures that the world champions are the best sailors, not just the sailors with the most expensive equipment.

Doug Skidmore, CEO of Hobie Cat Company, whose team supply and maintain all the boats to ensure the fairest competition for the sailors, is looking forward to bringing the championship back to the U.S. especially Southwest Florida.

"Fort Myers and the South Seas Island Resort are a perfect location for the Hobie 16 World Championships," Skidmore said. "The water, white-sand beaches, weather, people and location offer some of the best sailing conditions I have seen. As a company, we are proud to be a major part of these world championships."

The event information will be accessible on the International Hobie Class Association and the Hobie 16 Worlds websites and will include dates, locations, host accommodations and other relevant details of the event. For all details regarding the 22nd Hobie 16 World Championships, visit www.hobieworlds.com.

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