Exciting Day Two In Charleston Leaves Kiss Still In Lead Position

21 April 2012

After a second day filled with four additional very challenging races, Michael Kiss on Bacio remains in the lead of the 30-boat Audi Melges 20 fleet at Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week. Looking to conquer the event for a second consecutive year, Kiss confirmed one thing today — racing on Charleston's beautiful harbor can grant the sweetest of success, yet simultaneously conjure up some tricky light-air and heavy-current conditions designed to devastate an almost flawless score line.

Switching overnight/overall positions are Russell Lucas on Shimmer and Travis Weisleder on Layline Race Team. Second and third respectively, they are separated by only two points and seven from the leader.

Kiss ended the day with a 5-16-1 and a 17, enabling Weisleder and Lucas to close the points gap substantially. Discards went into effect after Race Six, and as it almost always does, scrambled the results board. 

With the top leaders focused on each other, Marc Hollerbach's Fu got in on a piece of the action by winning Race One of the day. He got a great start, putting him in charge almost immediately. He held the lead from start to finish. Deneen Demourkas aboard Groovederci claimed some satisfaction finishing second and Bill Griffin's Kill Bill took third.

The final heat of the day proved itself to be a make-or-break race for the leaders as both Lucas and Kiss pulled the trigger too early on the start, resulting in an OCS. Anxious to maintain position, it was as if they couldn't get back to the line fast enough to clear the penalty, watching the fleet sail further and further away. California's Sid Gorham on Funner pulled ahead early, ultimately taking the win. On the last downwind run, an aggressive Paul Reilly on Red Sky powered in from the right to go from top ten at the final weathermark to finish second at the line. Daniel Theilman's Kuai came third. Focused on speed and the continuously shifting breeze, Lucas managed to make progress settling for fourteenth, while Kiss suffered his worst score yet, a seventeenth.

Racing continues on Sunday, the final day of the event. Currently, rainy conditions are predicted for early morning Sunday and surely, it will make racing results all the more interesting, and without a doubt an exciting final day.

TOP TEN RESULTS (After Eight Races, With One Discard)
1.) Michael Kiss, Bacio; 1-1-12-5-16-1-[17] = 27
2.) Russell Lucas, Shimmer; 9-7-3-3-7-1-2-[14] = 32
3.) Travis Weisleder, Layline Race Team; 2-2-2-8-8-[12]-5-7 = 34
4.) Paul Reilly, Red Sky; [20]-3-8-4-6-6-9-2 = 38
5.) Daniel Theilman, Kuai; 21-6-[25]-11-4-2-7-3 = 54
6.) John Arendshorst, Blink 20/20; 13-[17]-10-6-10-3-4-9 = 55
7.) Sid Gorham, Funner; 11-9-4-9-12-13-[26]-1 = 59
8.) Mark Plaxton, INTAC; 19-5-[31/DNF]-1-13-17-3-4 = 62 
9.) Tony Tabb, Elevation Racing; 3-10-6-10-11-15-[16]-11 = 66
10.) Marc Hollerbach, Fu; 10-13-7-19-1-14-[27]-6 = 70 
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Full race reports, interviews and photo galleries will be posted online each day after racing. Stay tuned to the Official Audi Melges 20 Web Site and Melges.com for all the latest details. You can also friend the Audi Melges 20 onFacebook, follow on Twitter and/or subscribe to the Official Audi Melges 20 You Tube Channel.