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Melges 32 Worlds

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  • Melges 32 Worlds

    17 international teams kicked off the 2014 Melges 32 Worlds in Miami under glorious
    conditions as you can see in the awesome imagery provided by Carlo Borlenghi. The Japanese/Spanish team
    of Mamma Aiuto are current leaders after 2 races with 6 points, followed closely by US entries ARGO and Delta.

    ight At The Top As Japan's Kamei Takes Early World Championship Lead

    Miami, FL - There's an old saying in racing: You can't win a World Championship on the first day of the regatta, but you can certainly lose it. And for more than half of the talented 17-boat Melges 32 World Championship fleet, the points spread is almost unimportant. "We're looking at the top nine boats separated by just nine points after two races," explained Race Officer Anderson Reggio, leader of the Coconut Grove Sailing Club-based Race Committee that braved steep, choppy seas and 15-20 knots of breeze to set the racecourse for the ultra-high performance Melges 32 racers. In contrast to those nine boats, the bottom half of the fleet finds itself with an uphill climb in the quest for a podium finish on Sunday.

    Race 1 saw slightly less breeze than the nuclear conditions at the Pre-Worlds, with teams struggling just before the start to pick the right headsail and rig tension for the puffy course, and with just seconds to the start, Pierre Casiraghi aboard Robertissima staked his claim for the pin end of the starting line. Casiraghi made it stick, leading out to the left, while 23 year-old Dalton DeVos (Holland, Michigan) and his Delta team struggled with an average start, flushed out to the right of the course.

    DeVos' team found breeze and shifts on their side, working their way back to the middle with a solid lead over the fleet. Meanwhile, Casiraghi continued to play the shifts reaching the windward mark in third, sandwiched by two Japanese skippers. As DeVos raced down to the gate at speeds nearing 20 knots, Casiraghi jumped into second place, splitting with Delta on the second beat. The always-competitive Richard Goransson aboard Inga From Sweden reveled in the lumpy waves, grinding his way toward the front of the fleet after a mid-line start.

    The young Michigander rounded the final mark just a boat length ahead of the Monaco team, and the battle was on. "I really didn't know how close they'd gotten - I'm generally too busy steering and trying to pick my way through the waves to really look around much," said DeVos. "When we finally gybed and I saw them in front of us, I realized our lead had disappeared."

    DeVos wasn't phased at all despite coming so close to the race win. "Second place is plenty to be happy with in this fleet," he said, adding that the conditions were 'pretty much perfect for these boats. Ripping through big waves, big breeze, and warm water are what they were created for!'

    Picture-perfect conditions continued through a short break, and the aggression these teams are known for bubbled to the surface during the start of Race Two. With the entire team pushing the starting line with ten seconds to go, there was no way Reggio and his team would see an 'all clear' start like Race One, and four boats - including Race One winner Robertissima - were called 'OCS', returning to the start line to clear themselves.

    With a long two-mile beat, boatspeed and navigating the bigger waves efficiently was key, and it was reigning World Champion Jason Carroll's Argo coming from the middle left with a three boat length lead at the top mark. The New York-based racer - a competitor in every Melges 32 Worlds ever held - turned three boat lengths into some 3,000 feet at the finish, beating second place Naofumi Kamei on Mamma Aiuto! over the line by over two minutes - an unheard of margin in Melges 32 championship racing. "We were feeling pretty good about a hard-fought seventh in Race One, but that second race really was amazing for us," said Carroll, who credited his crew with the victory. "That's not going to happen too many times at this level of sailboat racing, and these guys earned every inch of it with their hiking and intensity right to the line."

    Multiple world champion helm Deneen Demourkas (Santa Barbara, California) showed her downwind form constantly passing boats on the runs to take third place for team Groovederci.

    After sailing a mistake free Race One and collecting a fourth place, Kamei and his mostly Spanish team showed good speed and smarts to take the second spot in Race Two behind Carroll. Kamei's six points is good enough for the overall Championship lead, and while Mamma Aiuto's Manu Weiller said he was a little surprised to be leading after Day One, he knew his team was ready for the Worlds. "We progressed a lot and we felt strong going into this regatta," said Weiller, who admitted that Mamma Aiuto! wasn't the fastest boat in the fleet today, but that was OK. "The crew had clean maneuvers, our skipper stayed calm, and we had a good day," he said. "This Championship has barely begun."

    Former World Champions William Douglass on Goombay Smash and John Kilroy, Jr. on Samba Pa Ti found themselves on the back foot after just two races. Douglass suffered a knockdown on the first downwind leg of the day, damaging a spinnaker and retiring. While Kilroy was disqualified for a rules infringement at the chaotic top mark of Race 2.

    With day one in the books, the motto for many teams it to 'keep grinding.' There are four more long days ahead with plenty of opportunities for teams to rise or drop in the standings. The forecast remains similar for the coming days - a forecast that's almost impossibly good for Melges 32 racing - and you're invited to watch.

    Wednesday marks the second day of racing with a first initial warning of 1100.

    " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery

  • #2
    Lotta carbon in there. Thought that fad had come and gone?


    • #3
      Day 3 Melges Worlds: ARGO By 3

      Larchmont Yacht Club's ARGO owned by Jason Carroll has eased into 1st Place by 3 points over Italian's Torpyone owned by Eduardo Lupi and by 4 point over STIG, owned by Alessandro Rombelli contested in winds in the mid teens off of Biscayne Bay.

      Today's report from yesterdays racing below...

      All images Carlo Borlenghi Clicky

      Miami, FL - With four of ten scheduled races in the bag at the 2014 Melges 32 World Championship, and after a shifty, unpredictable day of racing, the crowded top of the leader board is beginning to thin out. With less than half of the regatta finished, there remain epic battles ahead for anyone looking to make – or stay on - the podium.

      Seventeen teams from eight nations took to the water this morning for the second day of championship racing aboard the Melges 32, one of the world's highest-performance sailboats.

      Race Three started clean, with the left side of the course — to the North — looking strong indeed. A gaggle of European boats tacked out to the right, led by Edoardo Lupi and Massimo Pessina's Torpyone, including Alessandro Rombelli's STIG and Richard Goransson's Inga From Sweden. Lupi would successfully hang on for the wire-to-wire win, an impressive feat in this stacked, competitive fleet while current regatta leader, Monaco's Pierre Casiraghi at the helm of Robertissima sailed their worst race of the week – a ninth place.

      Like Miami's usually consistent trade winds, Casiraghi has proved himself reliable on the starting line, fighting for the left end of the line in four of four races. It's paid off handsomely, and the 27-year old skipper is the only competitor at the World Championship to have won two races this early in the week so far. Clearly his pin-end prowess is paying off. He now leads just 6 points over second-place Goransson, who seemed to be passing boats all day. "If there’s one thing that characterizes this team, it's an ability to always battle back from any adversity," said Goransson. "These guys actually do not know how to give up."

      After more than an hour of postponement during which some of the fleet was lit up by a seemingly private rainbow, Race Officer Anderson Reggio waited for a squall line to pass.

      Race Four got underway in slightly less breeze and light showers, and with a huge right shift just before the start, Casiraghi battled for the pin again and it was looking disastrous, alongside of William Douglass' Goombay Smash. And just when Casiraghi started to get close to running out of room, another shift came in, paying the left side like a slot machine and vaulting him into the a lead he wouldn’t relinquish.

      Riding Casiraghi on the port tack layline was class cinderella Chris Wientjes on Stormvogel, who put together a nearly perfect beat on the left to round in second; rarefied air for a relatively new team and something to savor – and unfortunately, did not last.

      Meanwhile, Casiraghi extended his lead to over a minute by the final mark of the day to over a minute on the next boat by the final mark of the race. Like many teams in the confused seas and moderating breeze, a gybe could prove tricky – even for a crew full of champions. "The tackline came off in the middle of the last gybe, something that I have not seen before on our boat," said German amateur racer Gunnar Bahr, mastman aboard Robertissima. "We had to bring in the pole, untangle the tack line, it was really slow!" Meanwhile, carving through the fleet was young Dalton Devos' Delta, now in striking distance for the win if Casiraghi's crew couldn't get their sails drawing. With their lead more than halved in just seconds and the skipper looking over his shoulder, the crew efforts finally paid and they launched down the face of a wave as she built speed toward the finish line. As Casiraghi escaped, Jason Carroll's Team Argo flubbed a gybe on the final approach to the finish line while trying to stay on top of DeVos' air, with a potential second or third place finish turning into a sixth place finish in less than a minute.

      Opening day leader Naofumi Kamei's Mamma Aiuto! had an unexpected drama after a port-tack approach during Race Four. Kamei tried to break through a hole that wasn’t as big as he thought it was, forcing Goransson above close-hauled. Kamei chose not to take a penalty on the course, the post-race jury hearing found Kamei had fouled Goransson, therefore he was disqualified from the race – perhaps the first chink in Kamei's armor.

      While some teams were left with their heads spinning at the end of a tricky, blustery and long day, the majority of this diverse fleet of professional and amateur racers gathered in the Regatta Tent for wine tasting with Stella Rosa Black, daily awards, VOR presentation with Mark Towill and Charlie Enright, and some great food and drink in at Miami Beach Marina. This is a group that battles as fiercely on the water as it enjoys food, fun and friendship together on shore.

      Steadier and stronger breeze is forecast for the third day of racing — Hedgehog Day and with a chance for lighter winds on Sunday, there is some potential for a grueling three-race day on Friday. Teams will discard their worst score after Friday, with the anticipation of a major shuffle in the standings.


      EVENT Website
      " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella" Photo Gallery


      • #4

        Miami, FL - For the first time in the history of the Melges 32 class, there is a back-to-back Melges 32 World Champion. After a few up and down finishes early the event and some Houdini-esque comebacks late in the event, Jason Carroll on Argo with tactician Cameron Appleton, and crew comprised of Anthony Kouton, Scott Norris, Weston Barlow, Graham Landy, Phillip Wehrheim and Mike Kuschner put the fleet in a sleeper hold on days four and five to secure the overall win. Edoardo Lupi and co-owner Massimo Pessina’s Torpyone with tactician Lorenzo Bressani finished second, while Naofumi Kamei’s Mamma Aiuto! with Manu Weiller on tactics placed third overall.

        The one and only, final showdown race for the World title and trophy commenced under the lightest conditions seen yet with a pulsing NW wind at 6-9 kts. After an intense dial-up for the start between front-runner Carroll and Lupi/Pessina, the fleet got an all-clear start with Keisuke Suzuki’s Swing rounding the weather mark in first. Carroll eventually took over the lead with Dalton DeVos’ Delta, Ryan DeVos’ Volpe, Alessandro Rombelli’s STIG and William Douglass’ Goombay Smash in the chase for the remaining podium positions. The breeze got even lighter for the final downwind run and to the finish with Carroll holding on, cool, calm and collected rounding through the gates for the win securing a second-consecutive World Championship title. Dalton DeVos fought hard to finish in second, while his cousin Ryan settled for third landing them both in the top five.

        All images © Carlo Borlenghi/ Melges Class Association

        Back on-shore a complete awards and trophy presentation was held crowning Carroll and all the event winners, including a special award presented to Chris Wientjes and his Stormvogel entourage as 2014 Melges 32 Rookie of the Year.

        A very special thanks to everyone who made this World Championship possible including every owner and competitor that traveled near and far to be with the fleet, our sponsors Red Bull, Perrier, Peroni, Stella Rosa Black, Santero, North Sails and Lavazza, the hedgehog and Goombay Smash teams for awesome afternoon and evening parties, the professional PRO Anderson Reggio, the amazing and super dedicated Coconut Grove Sailing Club in particular Ron Rostorfer and Sandrine Quenee, the Jury, Miami Beach Marina and last, but certainly not least — the impeccable Megan Goldman and her staff at Silent Touch Productions.

        TOP TEN RESULTS (FINAL - After Ten Races, One Discard)
        1.) Jason Carroll/Cameron Appleton, Argo; 7-1-[12]-6-1-8-5-1-2-1 = 32
        2.) Edoardo Lupi & Massimo Pessina/Lorenzo Bressani, Torpyone; 8-[14]-1-7-8-2-2-4-3-4 = 39
        3.) Naofumi Kamei/Manu Weiller, Mamma Aiuto!; 4-2-5-[18/DSQ]-2-17-11-6-1-5 = 53
        4.) Ryan DeVos/James Spithill, Volpe; 6-8-6-9-10-3-6-[13]-4-3 = 55
        5.) Alessandro Rombelli/Terry Hutchinson, STIG; 5-6-3-[16]-12-1-1-12-12-8 = 60
        6.) Dalton DeVos/Jonathan McKee, Delta; 2-7-[16]-2-16-10-12-2-7-2 = 60
        7.) Alec Cutler/Richard Clarke, hedgehog; 10-4-7-12-3-4-9-3-8-17 = 60
        8.) William Douglass/Chris Larson, Goombay Smash; [18/DNF]-5-4-4-4-13-3-10-13-6 = 62
        9.) Pierre Casiraghi/Vasco Vascotto, Robertissima; 1-7.6/RDG-9-1-11-9-4-9-17-12 = 63.6
        10.) Richard Goransson/Morgan Larson, Inga From Sweden III; 3-10-2-5-14-[16]-8-8-9-9 = 68

        Full Results
        " I just found out my nest egg has salmonella"

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