August 4, 2017 – Helsinki, Finland – The 20th edition of the Melges 24 World Championship just came to an end in Helsinki, with a series of eleven races that challenged the crews with weather conditions that ranged from light wind to heavy breeze and seas.
After the success obtained in the Worlds of Torbole in 2012, exactly five years ago on August 4th, the couple helmsman-tactician Fracassoli-Fonda contributed to the success of Italian entry Maidollis by Gianluca Perego with also Giovanni Ferrari as a part of the 2012 winner team, and Stefano Lagi onboard.
The Italian crew has been able to sail very consistent races, with placements that only once went below the 10th position: they closed the series with a total of 35 points and a margin of 23 points over the second classified. In day two of racing they also achieved a record for the Melges 24 Worlds, by winning all the races that were sailed in that day. They succeed in the gold book to the Irish Embarr by Conor Clarke, who won the penultimate edition of the Melges 24 World Championship, held in Miami in December 2016 and can hold the historical perpetual trophy of the Melges Performance Sailboats for one year.
Vice-World Champion is American Monsoon by Bruce Ayres with Mike Buckley calling the tactics and Mark Ivey as a coach, which has all through the series battled to maintain a podium placement: the two bullets scored in the series helped Monsoon’s holding tight to the silver medal. The American crew is in fact followed, in the final ranking, by Kevin Welch’s Mikey, with a margin of just three points.
The American entry Mikey managed to climb over Italian Andrea Racchelli’s Altea in the last day of the Championship: the crew already winner of the Melges 24 European Series, then, finished the event in fourth place, while the top-five was completed by another Italian entry, Taki 4 by Marco Zammarchi, which also received another important prize.
The boat with Niccolò Bertola in helm, in fact, managed to confirm itself for the second year in a row as Melges 24 Corinthian World Champion, after the success obtained in Miami and will keep the perpetual Henri Samuel’s Trophy another year. The crew was made, as past year, by Niccolò Bertola, Giacomo Fossati, Marco Zammarchi, Matteo De Chiara, Giovanni Bannetta and Niccolò Bianchi as the coach.
Silver medal in the Corinthian division goes to an historical component of the Melges 24 Class, Gill Race Team by Miles Quinton with Geoff Carveth helming. The Estonian entry Lenny by Tõnu Tõniste, already Corinthian World Champion in Melges 24, closes the 20th edition of the Melges 24 World Championship in third position.
Some special prizes from North Sails and Melges Europe were awarded during the final prize giving. As the future and next generation of Melges 24 class, two 12-years-old young men were sailing on board of SWE715 and JOKER (4sale25k) FIN650 – Ludvig Meldgaard and Joel Kiiski respectively. To encourage also the sailors with not so good results the prizes were awarded to the boat being on the last position on the overall ranking – Visitlohja FIN316,; to the boat being 30th in overall ranking – IMMAC SPUTNIK GER569. To highlight the 20th Melges 24 World Championship it was also good to end up on the 20th place in both rankings: in overall ranking Bo Boje Pedersen’s upupup DEN837 got a special prize from Melges Europe – GARMIN watch quatix 3 and nice additions from North Sails; in Corinthian ranking Martin Fridh’s Wild Thing SWE684 with nice presents from North Sails as well. Nice thought by North Sails also to give a special 50% discount on any Melges 24 sails to the boat which broke its sails during the event – Timj Köppe’s SLIPPERY WHEN WET GER499 was the one to decrease his expenses on new sails.
Zarco Dragonic (Cavallino USA19) Perpetual Trophy to the first time participating owner aboard with the highest results went to Domonkos Rozsnyay, the owner of FGF SAILING TEAM HUN728 ending up on the high 6th place in overall ranking. Melges Europe‘s Gift Cards to the Corinthian top teams were a nice addition to the main prizes as well. The greatest achievements of six teams in overall ranking and four teams in Corinthian rankings were also awarded with the Vana Tallinn Elegancè piece-of-art-style gift bottles.
TOP 10 in Overall ranking
- MAIDOLLIS ITA854 Carlo Fracassoli, Enrico Fonda, Giovanni Ferrari, Luca Perego, Stefano Lagi 5-10-1-1-1-3-(20)-2-6-2-4 – 35 pts
- MONSOON USA851 Bruce Ayres, Mike Buckley, George Peet, Jeff Reynolds, Jessica Koenig 6-1-2-(22)-6-12-9-1-11-4-7 – 59 pts
- MIKEY USA 838 Kevin Welch, MacDonald Ross, Jason Rhodes, Ian Sloan, Serena Vilage 10-11-5-4-13-(19)-3-5-2-3-6 – 62 pts
- ALTEA ITA 722 Andrea Racchelli, Gaudenzio Bonini, Pietro Canepa, Alberto Verna, Matteo Ramian 1-(22)-15-3-5-1-18-6-1-6-8 – 64 pts
- TAKI 4 ITA 778 COR Niccolò Bertola, Giacomo Fossati, Giovanni Bannetta, Matteo de Chiara, Marco Zammarchi 11- 13-6-2-8-18-(34)-8-3-11-11 – 91 pts
- FGF SAILING TEAM HUN 728 Bakóczy Róbert, Rozsnyay Domonkos, Takàcsy Kristóf, Takàcsy Levente, Buza Bence 2-(60 BFD)-9-12-3-4-46-4-5-9-1 – 95 pts
- STORM CAPITAL SAIL RACING NOR 751 Øyvind Jahre, Giulio Desiderato, Marius Orvin, Sivert Denneche, Ane Gundersen 26-24-3-5-7-13-(30)-7-12-12-3 – 112 pts
- GILL RACE TEAM GBR 694 COR Geoff Carveth, Christian Birrell, Miles Quinton, Daniel Schieber, Liam Gardner 13-(37)-30-15-2-14-21- 10-16-10-9 – 140 pts
- BLIND SQUIRREL USA 547 John Brown, Kevin Jewett, Matt Pistay, Jack Brown, Carl Horrocks (43)-30-7-7-21-9-1-22-21-7-19 – 144 pts
- IMAGINE GBR 557 David Rowen, Jamie Lea , Jim Schwerdt, Fred Kemp 19-3-11-6-19-11-12-16-24-23-(28) – 144 pts
TOP 10 in Corinthian division
- TAKI 4 ITA 778 Niccolò Bertola, Giacomo Fossati, Giovanni Bannetta, Matteo de Chiara, Marco Zammarchi 4-6-1-1-3-7-(20)-1-1-4-3 – 31 pts
- GILL RACE TEAM GBR 694 Geoff Carveth, Christian Birrell, Miles Quinton, Daniel Schieber, Liam Gardner 6-(24)-12-6-1-4-12-3-5-3-2 -54 pts
- LENNY EST 790 Tõnu Tõniste, Toomas Tõniste, Tammo Otsasoo, Maiki Saaring, Andres Rohtla 18-1-3-5-5-2-21-4-(38 DSQ)-1-4 – 64 pts
- WHITE ROOM GER 677 Luis Tarabochia, Sebastian Buehler, Michael Tarabochia, Marco Tarabochia, Dominik Mueller 2-(18)-7-11-11-1-1-9-6-7-10 – 65 pts
- PARTY GIRL NOR 649 Jens Wathne, Jørgen Wathne, Mikkel Berger, Henrik Rye Jakobsen 17-15-5-3-6-(23)-16-2-2-2-9 – 77 pts
- MÅS WOLFPACK NOR 724 Jon Aksel Mortensen, Aksel Jacobsen, Maxime Brackman, Magnus Andersen, Andreas Fischer 9-17-4-2-2-3-26-(38 UFD)-3-11-1 – 78 pts
- IMMAC 24 GER 688 Stefan Gründler, Paul Kuebel, Franziska Vosswinkel, Johannes Beyer, Tim Kilian Krämer 7-9-8-(23)-14-6-7-7-8-8-5 – 79 pts
- TEAM KESBEKE/SIKA/GILL NED 827 Ronald Veraar, Eelco Blok, Pim Mommersteeg, Joost Brouwer 1-10-(38 BFD)-4-4-28-15-5-4-10-6 – 87 pts
- SWE 715 Jonas Berntsson, Magnus Lundberg, Claes Meldgaard, Anton Olsson, Ludvig Meldgaard 10-12-11-8-8-9-11-10-10.8 RDGa-10.8 RDGa-(18) – 100.6 pts
- KORUTV.FI FIN 742 Tomi Hakola, Henrik Hellman, Mari Põldmaa, Pavel Tolonen, Peter Flinkman 12-7-22-18-20-(33)-2-12-9-5-15 – 122 pts
After a brief summer rest, the fleet will lead to Medemblik, the Netherlands for the penultimate event of Melges 24 European Sailing Series 2017, that is going to conclude in October in Luino, Italy.
2018 will be another busy season, too: the dates have already been announced for the first ever Melges 24 Worlds to be held in Canada – Victoria, British Columbia from May 31st to June 8th and 2018 Melges 24 Europeans, that will be hosted in Riva del Garda, Italy from August 3rd to 10th.
Huge thanks from IM24CA goes to the sponsors and supporters of the Melges 24 World Chmapionship 2017:
FinnLines, Tallink, Vana Tallinn, LifeProof, Dermoshop, Melges Europe/ Helly Hansen, Estonian Melges 24 Class Association, Holiday Inn, Blue Peter Restaurant, Helsingfors Segelklubb.