2010 Melges 32 European Championship Commences

12 May 2010

Cagliari, Italy - The actors and big names do not change this time around, but instead of racing for Audi Sailing Series points, the Melges 32 fleet races for something more — the prestigious title of European Champion.

The house of four rings sits alongside of the Melges 32 fleet in Cagliari for the first European continental event equaling four days of racing. Teams from Holland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Czech Republic, Italy and the United States are guests of the championship, battling for one of the class’ four prestigious major titles and most coveted in one design sailing.

There is absolutely no way to predict who exactly will win. As of late, many teams have displayed their ability to be at the forefront of this fleet. Based on what has been seen this year alone, Luca Lalli on B.LinSailing.com and tactician Lorenzo Bressani inch closer and closer to success. It confirms that their goal, which is the same as many others, is to win.

Cagliari has been conquered before by Carlo Alberini on Calvi Network well-supported by tactician Gabriele Benussi. Just a short ten months ago, they were awarded 2009 Audi Melges 32 Sailing Series Champion in these very same waters. Alberini comes to this event as the reigning series champion, but also as the team with a consistently high ranking, a true wake up call for the rest of the fleet.

The same ambitions prevail for Fantastica’s Lanfranco Cirillo with Michele Paoletti on tactics. They were monstrous in Lerici, winning a great showdown with rare power and perfection. Despite his less than impressive performance in Scarlino, he to has to potential to be on top.

Rush Diletta’s (per Lerici) Mauro Mocchegiani has employed the talented tactician Matteo Ivaldi, a lethal weapon in his own right amongst such a competitive group. At the same level, with a great thirst for success, Filippo Pacinotti’s Brontolo with Freddy Loof as tactician is usually the fastest out of the starting gate. They lack consistency based on the numbers so far, however they too can win.

Roberto Pardini on Janas plays on his home turf and leads the ranks of other possible contenders such as Francesco Martino on Pilot Italia, Ferdinando Battistella on Cuervo Y Sobrinos, Edoardo Pavesio on Fra Martina and Andrea Cecchetti on Bagua with Vasco Vascotto as tactician.

The very Californian John Kilroy on Samba Pa Ti (2010 Key West Race Week Champion) and Frenchman Jean-Francois Cruette on Teasing Machine (2010 Miami Grand Prix Champion) are another pair that deserves watching, yet their first appearances in Europe. They lead the charge ahead of Kees Kaan’s ROARK, Englishmen Peter Rogers on Highlife and Joe Woods on Red, Czech Martin Knetig on Black Mamba and Germany’s Wolfgang Stolz on Opus One.

Absent from the fleet is reigning World Champion Pieter Taselaar on Bliksem, however they are expected to return for the remaining Audi Sailing Series events as well as Vincenzo Onorato’s Mascalzone Latino Team Audi.

Full Entry List
1.) John Kilroy/Stu Bannatyne, Samba Pa Ti
2.) Luca Lalli/Lorenzo Bressani, B.Linsailing.com
3.) Martin Knetig/Martin Trcka, Black Mamba
4.) Joe Woods/Paul Goodison, Red
5.) Filippo Pacinotti/Freddy Loof, Brontolo
6.) Lanfranco Cirillo/Michelle Paoletti, Fantastica
7.) Mauro Mocchegiani/Matteo Ivaldi, Rush Diletta
8.) Carlo Alberini/Gabriele Benussi, Calvi Network
9.) Francesco Martino/Alberto Bolzan, Pilot Italia
10.) Wolfgang Stolz/Sten Mohr, Opus One
11.) Edoardo Pavesio/Carlo Fracassoli, Fra Martina
12.) Roberto Pardini/Salvatore Paderi, Janas
13.) Ferdinando Battistella/Sandro Montefusco, Cuervo Y Sobrinos
14.) Peter Rogers/Ruaridh Scott, Highlife
15.) Kees Kaan/Rutger Krijger, ROARK
16.) Andrea Cecchetti/Vasco Vascotto, Bagua
17.) Jean Francois Cruette/Christian Ponthieu, Teasing Machine

Full Crew List
View Photo Gallery

Full race reports, interviews and photo galleries will be posted online each day after racing at the official website of the International Melges 32 Class Association (IM32CA). If you are unable to attend 2010 Melges 32 Audi European Championship, stay in touch by subscribing to the IM32CA RSS Feed, or visiting the Official Melges 32 Blog. Friend the fleet on Facebook, follow it on Twitter and subscribe to the Official Melges 32 You Tube Channel.