From June 2-6, nine of the top 20 ranked women sailors in the world will be in Annapolis to compete in the BOAT/U.S. Santa Maria Cup match racing championship.
Regatta organizers say it is the strongest field for the only qualifying event in the United States for the world championships to be sailed in Italy this fall.
The Santa Maria Cup is a round-robin series leading to semifinal and final matches. The regatta has headquarters at the Eastport Yacht Club, and races are held at the mouth of the Severn River.
This year's competitors include:
* Paula Lewin of Bermuda, No. 1 in the world and defending champion in this event.
* Betsy Alison of Newport, R.I., No. 2 in the world and a five-time Yachtswoman of the Year.
* Klaartje Zuiderbaan of the Netherlands, ranked No. 4 and head of the only women's match racing team in her country.
* Shirley Robertson of Great Britain, currently ranked No. 6 and a two-time Olympian.
* Marie Klok of Denmark, seventh in the world and the top Danish match-racer.
* Marie Bjorling of Sweden, No. 10 and sailing her second Santa Maria Cup.
* Cory Sertl of Rochester, N.Y., No. 13, a former Yachtswoman of the Year and an Olympian.
* Drusilla Slattery of Marblehead, No. 14 and winner of the Sonars Fleet Match Race in 1997 and 1998.
* Sandy Grosvenor of Annapolis, 18th in the world and a five-time veteran of this series, placing in the semifinals last year.
* Jane Moon of the Cayman Islands, ranked 39th and an accomplished J/24 and J/22 sailor.
* Dawn Riley of San Francisco, No. 56 and the only woman to manage and captain an America's Cup team and a Whitbread Round the World Race veteran.
* Charlie Arms of San Diego, who qualified for the Santa Maria Cup by placing second in the Sundance Cup.