Perfect Conditions Prevail on Day Two In Miami at Melges 20 Winter Series

12 December 2015

Miami, FL - Known as one of the best sailing venues in North America, Biscayne Bay delivered warm sunshine, a dazzling 12-16 knots of breeze out of the Northeast, and three awesome races, ultimately setting up a fierce duel at the top between Liam Kilroy’s Wildman and Jim Wilson’s Oleander. Adding to the excitement, right behind them was a pack of fast, veteran teams looking to capitalize on the most minor mistake.

Once again, PRO Blake Middleton in charge of the Coconut Grove Sailing Club (CGSC) Race Committee set a great race course and started racing on time at noon.

With many teams feeling burned from Day One, and the right side paying so big, a sizeable portion of the fleet b-lined it to the right side and once again found themselves in good positions at the top. Drew Freides on Pacific Yankee looked like they were shot out of a cannon as they crossed the fleet on starboard tack. Thanks to some heavy air training prior to the World Championship last October, Freides led wire to wire and took the win followed by John Kilroy’s Samba Pa Ti in second and Wilson in third.

Race Five (in a potential series of eight) gave the first glimpse of any sort of left shift working as the majority of the those who dug to the right side early got crushed, and those that were furthest left were able to sail a great angle on port tack with solid pressure. Bob Hughes’ Heartbreaker got left after a tough start to join the lead group, but it would be Liam Kilroy who took the bullet when the dust settled, followed by his dad in second and the blazing fast Brazilian Cesar Gomes Neto on Portobello finished third.

The final race of the day provided the most tricky conditions as the first beat had a few sizable shifts, but leading at the first mark again from the right side was long-time Melges 20 owner Daniel Thielman on Kuai. Sailing fast up and down, he did his best to hold off a charge from the younger Kilroy (who eventually took the win). Thielman stayed close coming second followed by John Kilroy in third.

Winning the day and moving into first overall with a 4-1-1 score card, Liam gave credit to his team on their strong performance, and of course, sage advice from his father. “The team did a great job today. We were able to execute our game plan and like my Dad always says, keep the boat moving fast,” commented Liam at the end of Day Two.

Taking a tumble in the overall standings, but maintaining a healthy lead for first in the Corinthian fleet, Bruce and Jay Golison are looking to solidify their win with a great final day. Rounding out the Corinthian podium is John Brown’s Blind Squirrel in second, and Paul Currie on Wild Deuces just a few points behind.

With a mixed forecast of rain and a strong breeze out of the Northeast, the tropical conditions the fleet experienced today may be gone, but the racing will still be full on with plenty of more tight racing to come.

TOP TEN RESULTS (Preliminary - After Six Races, One Discard)
1.) Liam Kilroy, Wildman; [8]-2-6-4-1-1 = 14
2.) James Wilson, Oleander; 2-4-1-3-[9]-5 = 15
3.) Drew Freides, Pacific Yankee; 7-3-[10]-1-7-4 = 22
4.) John Kilroy, Samba Pa Ti; [15]-8-7-2-2-3 = 22
5.) Cesar Gomes Neto, Portobello; 3-[14]-9-5-3-6 = 26
6.) Jay Golison, Midlife Crisis; 1-1-2-13-12-[18] = 29
7.) Paul Reilly, Red Sky Sailing; 9-5-[11]-6-4-8 = 32
8.) Daniel Thielman, Kuai; 10-10-[13]-11-6-2 = 39
9.) Rob Wilber, Cinghiale; 6-9-4-10-[16]-10 = 39
10.) Jason Michas, Midnight Blue; 5-7-[14]-8-14-7 = 41

TOP THREE CORINTHIANS (Preliminary - After Six Races, One Discard)
1.) Jay Golison, Midlife Crisis; 1-1-2-13-12-[18] = 29
2.) John Brown, Blind Squirrel; 11-13-[18]-14-18-15 = 71
3.) Paul Currie, Wild Deuces; 13-11-17-[18]-17-17 = 75
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