Three days of regsitration, measuring the boats, checking the sails and getting familiar with the race course, have been fabulous. Finnish summer has been showing the better part of it to the sailors and everybody has been enjoying to get together and see again the members of the Big Happy Melges 24 Family to celebrate the 20th Worlds of the class.
Sunday evening the Worlds were officially declared open by Perttu Rönkkö, Regatta Chair and the Vice Commodor of the hosting club Helsingfors Segelklubb. The 59 Melges 24 teams from 15 nations were greeted by Benedek Fluck, the IM24CA Championship Coordinator Europe (HUN); Jens Wathne, the Chairman of IM24CA (NOR); Tomi Hakola, IM24CA Treasurer and the President of the Finnish Melges 24 Class Association; Henrik Andersson, the President of the Finnish Boat- and Sailing Federation. The ambience was great and emotional while almost 300 sailors were greeting staff of IM24CA, Race Committee, Jury, organisers and volunteers.
At the end of the official opening ceremony the anthem of Finland, celebrating it’s 100 Years of Independence in 2017, was played. This was to honor the opportunity to have this fabulous sailing event here in Helsinki, Finland, where the last Melges 24 title event was held in 2003 – Jacobs Creek Europeans. And the second time up here in the North the title event was held in Tallinn, Estonia 2010 – Marinepool Melges 24 Worlds.