Only one day to go, with the Opening Ceremony and practice race taking place tomorrow, and then the games will start for the most challenging, amazing and competitive regatta of the 2019 Melges 24 season, the World Championship of Villasimius.
With 61 crews on the water, for a total of over 300 sailors and 15 Countries represented, the event will be a challenge also for the organizers, who are working at full rhythm in these days in Marina di Villasimius to make sure they can deliver an unforgettable event.
Excitement is in the air, as you can feel from the Worlds of PRO Athanasios Papantonio (GRE): “The Melges 24 is a fantastic Class that every day calls the sailors to demonstrate their strategic technique, tactics and boat handling. For me this is the first time in Sardinia and I’m stunned by the beauty of the venue and the facilities that have been provided by the organizers. Villasimius is a lovely location and the wind conditions that I have seen in the last couple of days make me think it will be a wonderful event. Crews are registering, measuring their boats and passing through the weigh in procedure for the moment and in the same time some of them are going out on the water for training. The weather forecasts show that it will be light for the first two days and it will be picking up during the rest of the week. I have a stunning team of Jury members working with me, all of them are very passionate of this Class and feel like members of the Melges 24 family. This feeling will make the event much better”.
Arto Kiiski (FIN), Jury Chairman, commented: “I was sailing the Melges 24 for 7 years starting from 1997 with hull #298, Marinel PaTu. We sailed in Punta Ala, Torquay, Torbole, La Rochelle and all those legendary events back then. Since we retired, I was involved with the organization of the events starting from 2010, when I was part of the Race Committee of the Worlds in Tallinn. I continued working as Jury member since 2011 doing all European and World Championships on the European side. For Villasimius I am very privileged and honored to be the Jury Chairman with an absolutely brilliant jury team. Eric Mehlbaum (NED) is my Vice Chair and the rest of the team is composed by Ron Barak (ISR), Doug Sloan (USA), Piero Occetto, Tito Morosetti, Marco Giampà and Giorgio Bolla (ITA): we are having the best possible team to handle the issues that are going to be addressed for the jury. We are having a strong experience on this Class and hopefully it helps us to through this event successfully.”
Branko Parunov (SLO), Chief Equipment Inspector of the event: “We are a small team of measures but very united: the team includes Event Chief Measurer Gabor Csernussi (HUN), Eros Angeli and Gianpaolo Sanna (ITA). We all have experience of different Melges 24 European events and have been working together already, which makes our teamwork much better and easier. Everything is going as planned and thanks to competitors willing to help and good vibes around us, we are slightly ahead of schedule so far.”
Regatta Chair from Marina di Villasimius, Mirco Babini is happy to host the Melges 24 International class. “On behalf of Lega Navale Italiana of Villasimius e Marina di Villasimius we would like to welcome all participants in the regatta. We are very happy to host the Melges 24 World Championship for the first time, this is the closing event of an impressive international sailing season here, with all Melges Classes and the GC 32 that have tested and appreciated our racing area, confirming Villasimius to be one of the top sailing spot. We are already working on next year programme, that once again will be full of international championships.”
Everything is then set for the start of the Melges 24 World Championship 2019: with five days of racing and a maximum of 12 regattas planned, next Saturday we’re going to discover who will be the new Melges 24 World Champions, following in the golden books Altea by Andrea Racchelli from Italy, and Full Circle by Robert Britten from Canada, who won the titles in Victoria (Canada) in June 2018.
The Melges 24 World Championship is organized by the Marina di Villasimius and Lega Navale Italiana – Sez. Villasimius in cooperation with the Italian Melges 24 Class and International Melges 24 Class Association. The World Championship is the final event both of the 2019 Melges 24 European Sailing Series and Italian Melges24 Tour 2019.