Classic Conditions Amp Up Opening Day At Melges 32 Gold Cup

3 December 2010

Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. - Day one of the 2010 Melges 32 Gold Cup Regatta, hosted by the Lauderdale Yacht Club (LYC) delivered three incredible races. The result - defending Gold Cup Champion, Annapolis' Rod Jabin on Ramrod is seated in first overall, followed by Ryan DeVos on Volpe and Alex Jackson on Leenabarca. "We love Fort Lauderdale." said Jabin. "I think things are starting to come together - a little. Richard Clarke and Chris Larson bring a lot to the team. They make this easy for me."

Race one of the day produced a pleasant 6-8 knots of breeze, setting the stage for what was probably the most challenging heat of the day. An over-aggressive start for Kip Meadows on roXanneand Italian-based Lanfranco Cirillo on Fantastica resulted in OCS. Jackson's Leenabarca took advantage of the opening light and fickle conditions, launching ahead and leading the fleet to the first weathermark. As he approached, Jackson encountered stiff competition from reigning U.S. National Champion DeVos, Steve Howe on Warpath and Phil Lotz on Arethusa. Jackson rounded in first to hold a solid lead. Downwind, he was out front and fast. Lotz challenged from the right, but as the breeze shifted he slipped to fourth allowing Joe Woods on Red to take over second place. Jason Carroll on Argo rounded third. A change of course was implemented at the gate bringing balance to the upwind beat for teams like Arethusa, Volpe, Warpath and Ramrod, all rounding respectively behind Jackson for the approach to the finish. Jackson was steadfast to win, Lotz was second and DeVos finished third.

The breeze began to build and the waves got a little larger for race two. Jeff Ecklund's STAR punched the starting line with speed putting him around the top mark in first, Howe and DeVos rounded closely in second and third. On the first downwind run, Jabin overtook Ecklund with DeVos holding firm. Back upwind, Meadows played the shifts just right, stealing the lead from Jabin now in second. The expertise of Jabin's tactician Chris Larson, combined with some red-hot boat speed served him well as he blasted across the finish line to win. DeVos managed to find some pressure on the right placing him ahead of Meadows to take second.

Howe's Warpath crushed the competition in race three. He rounded the top mark in first and never looked back. "We'll take it." commented Howe regarding the final race of the day. "I've sailed in Miami quite a bit, but this is the first time I've sailed here. I think we got lucky. This was so much fun and the Melges 32 is awesome. There was a little bit of everything today - shifty, puffy, choppy, you name the condition I think we saw it at some point." Howe won easily leaving Jabin, DeVos, Cirillo and Woods to battle for the remaining top five positions. Jabin edged DeVos for second. Cirillo was fourth and Woods finished fifth.

Saturday is Take A Junior Sailing Day. Each competing Melges 32 will be paired with an aspiring junior sailor. It's an exclusive, one-of-a-kind attribute of the Gold Cup Regatta, and the advantage and product of its inclusion is obvious. Two, previous participants of the Take A Junior Sailingprogram are bona fide Melges 32 crew members in 2010 — Kai Friesecke sails with Oscar Strugstad'sDawn Raider and Erika Reineke is aboard Ecklund's STAR
View the Take A Junior Sailing Day Crew Assignments

Friends, family and fans of the Melges 32 are able to tune-in and enjoy the racing action and developments from a distance, special thanks to Sail 22’s all new Sailing Updates and Sail Groove. They have teamed up to bring as-it-happens coverage from the water as well as after racing sailor interviews.

Daily race reports, press release and photos will be available at the official website of theInternational Melges 32 Class Association. If you are unable to attend the 2010 Melges 32 Gold Cup, stay in touch by subscribing to the IM32CA RSS Feed or visiting the Official Melges 32 Blog. The Melges 32 can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

TOP TEN RESULTS (After three races)
1.) Rod Jabin | Chris Larson, Ramrod; 4-2-1 = 7
2.) Ryan DeVos | Ed Baird, Volpe; 3-2-3 = 8
3.) Alex Jackson | Rob Greenhalgh, Leenabarca; 1-7-7 = 15
4.) Steve Howe | Morgan Larson, Warpath; 8-8-1 = 17
5.) Phil Lotz | Dalton Bergan; Arethusa; 2-4-11 = 17
6.) Joe Woods | Paul Goodison, Red; 6-11-5 = 22
7.) Jason Carroll | Dave Ullman, ARGO; 10-10-6 = 26
8.) Kip Meadows | Andy Horton, roXanne; 16-3-9 = 28
9.) Jeff Ecklund | Harry Melges, III, STAR; 15-6-8 = 29
10.) Lanfranco Cirillo | Michele Paoletti, Fantastica; 7-19-4 = 30
View Full Results
View Full Crew List
2010 Melges 32 Gold Cup Official Event Website