Count Down To Acura Key West 2008 Underway
14 January 2008
Key West, Florida - The final countdown has officially begun for 46 Melges 24s migrating south for the winter to ACURA Key West 2008 presented by Nautica. Taking place January 21-25, this outstanding event kicks off the racing year with some of the most ideal sailing conditions, spectacular competition and a highly diversified international fleet. Teams have come from more than seven countries to race.
The Melges 24 fleet has once again taken its place at the top of the heap in the attendance department. Defending 2007 Key West Champion and Boat of the Week Winner, Riccardo Simoneschi from Italy on 'Giacomel Audi' is aiming for a consecutive win. Multiple Key West venue winner and World Champion Dave Ullman aboard his 'Pegasus 505' Melges 24 will take on the likes of 2007 European Champion Flavio Favini at the helm for Franco Rossini on 'Blu Moon', UK National Champion John Pollard on 'Xcellent' and 2007 U.S. National Champion Brian Porter on 'Full Throttle'. Others expected to do well are Bora Gulari at the helm for Chuck Holzman on 'Flyer' and Alan Field on 'WTF'.
2008 brings another round of Corinthian energy to the Melges 24 Class. Teams must qualify for this all amatuer division and repeatedly it is as seriously contested, if not more than the overalls. Historically, those that have made the cut include Bruce Ayres on 'Monsoon' and 2007 King's Day Corinthian Champion Kelly Gough helming 'Bulls Eye' for owner Shawn Grisham. Each daily report will feature a 'Corinthian Heat' column dedicated specifically to this special challenge category.
Full results and reports will be posted at the official website of the U.S. Melges 24 Class Association (USMCA, www.usmelges24.com). Also see the official event website (www.premiere-racing.com).