- Associated Press - Monday, July 16, 2018

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (AP) - Defending champion Christophe Killian of the host Balboa Yacht Club and former champion Harry Price of Australia, the new No. 1-ranked skipper on the world match racing list, head the field in the 52nd annual Governor’s Cup starting Tuesday.

With Killian and Price in the invitational field of 12 skippers, this is one of the most competitive fields ever in the world’s oldest youth match racing championship.

“I think that everyone that wants to be here is here and people that aren’t here want to be here,” Price said Monday after practice. “It’s one of those events that is highly important on the calendar. Every year everyone is improving and getting a lot better, so each year it’s going to get better and better.”

This is Price’s fourth Governor’s Cup. He won it in 2015 and was fourth each of the past two years.

The 22-year-old Aussie is No. 1 in the current world match racing rankings, ahead of Taylor Canfield, who won the Congressional Cup in April. Price has been inside the top four the past two years, with a previous high of No. 2, so he’s taking it in stride being in the top spot.

“In my eyes it’s just a number,” Price said. “It’s all about performing on the day and in the event. It’s great to have reached this at such a young age, but I’m always still striving to be better every day. It’s not like I’m sort of sitting there like, ‘Yeah, I’ve made it now.’ It’s always going to be about improving.”

Price won the Youth Match Racing World Championship at Balboa Yacht Club last August.

Last year, Killian became the first Balboa Yacht Club skipper to win the regatta since Jack Franco in 1980.

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