Melges 20 Worlds – Embracing Classic Garda Conditions
Published on August 28th, 2014
Riva Del Garda, Italy (August 28, 2014) – Three additional races were added to the scoreboard on Thursday, Day Two of the 2014 Audi Melges 20 World Championship hosted by Fraglia Della Vela Riva. With a substantial 14-point lead, American John Kilroy on Samba Pa Ti is in first place overall.
Monaco’s Guido Miani aboard Monaco Racing Fleet had a phenomenal day, winning two of the three daily races. “We had a fantastic day – beautiful conditions. The lake is always amazing. Our tactician, Gabriele Benussi made some great calls. It was really tough racing against Samba and Section 16,” said Miani. “This boat is just amazing. I’ve been around, sailing for more than 40 years and this is clearly the best fleet, with the best people and a lot of fun.”
Tied with points and seated in third on countback is current Audi Sailing Series leader Dario Levi on Fremito D’Arja . Achille Onorato’s Mascalzone Latino Jr. is fourth, and overnight leader Alessandro Rombelli on STIG had a very disappointing day falling to fifth overall.
The first race of the day, Race Four got underway around 9 o’clock with overcast skies and a nice 10-12 knots of breeze, which slowly dissipated as the race completed. Fifty-seven teams rocked the starting line with Miani launching ahead to round the weathermark in first, followed by Mirko De Falco’s Peccere , Denmark’s Bo Boje Pedersen’s UpUpUp and Levi, with Kilroy, Onorato and Richard Davies on Section 16 very close behind. With a course change at the gate, Miani continued to lead the fleet with Levi and Kilroy gaining positions to occupy second and third. Kilroy gained again upwind to follow Miani around the final top mark of the race in second place.
On the final run to the finish, the top five boats put some distance between themselves and the rest of the fleet blasting downwind in the diminishing and shifty breeze. Miani took the win, Kilroy was second and Levi came third. Onorato finished fourth and Pedersen was fifth – his best finish ever since debuting in the fleet at the Worlds in Ocean Reef, FL.
The Race Committee was hoping for a quick reset of the course and getting Race Five started right away. However, the breeze was shifting 30 to 50 degrees at times prompting the AP Flag, hence sending teams back to the docks until better breeze appeared.
While on shore, teams enjoyed lunch in local cafe’s and restaurants. The sun appeared and more breeze arrived just before 1 o’clock – perfect for two more races.
Stellar conditions were in store for the fleet in Races Five and Six. A beautiful 13-15 knots, a 2-3 foot chop and 57 breeze-hungry Audi Melges 20s enjoyed afternoon racing in Garda to the fullest. An over-anxious fleet resulted in the first general recall of the regatta in Race Five. Once back in order and off the line, it was a full on, outright battle between Miani (first) and Kilroy (second) and Paul Reilly’s Red Sky Sailing Team (third) around the top mark. Miani passed through the gates with Kilroy chasing. Davies took advantage of great breeze to be third, followed by Reilly. For the final mark, Kilroy edged out Miani upwind. Once outfront Kilroy never looked back, taking the win. Davies took second with Miani accepting third.
The final race of the day was equally exciting and all smiles. This is what teams signed up for and Garda delivered – unsurpassed competition, premium racing and incredible downwind planing conditions. Miani punched out again to lead Race six, this time he established a nice lead leaving Kilroy, Reilly, Levi and Japan’s Naofumi Kamei on Mamma Aiuto! to battle for position. At the gate, Kilroy advanced into second, followed by Kamei and Davies who worked the left side for pressure moving up several positions.
Back upwind, Kilroy challenged but Miani was not about to relinquish his lead. Kamei, Davies, Levi, Franceso Farnetti on ITA-157 and Monaco’s Corado Agusta on Customly charged forward. Miani easily took the win while the race was still very much on for the remaining top five positions. Right at the finish line, Kamei foiled the jibe allowing for Davies to take third, Agusta was fourth. Kamei came fifth.
Friday marks the third day of racing in Riva with a 1 o’clock start, which is perfect since teams will be enjoying a Championship dinner tonight.
TOP TEN RESULTS (Preliminary – After Six Races, One Discard)
1.) John Kilroy/Paul Goodison, Samba Pa Ti ; -4-4-2-1-2 = 13
2.) Guido Miani/Gabriele Benussi, Monaco Racing Fleet ; -5-17-1-3-1 = 27
3.) Dario Levi/Niccolo Bianchi, Fremito D’Arja ; 6--8-3-4-6 = 27
4.) Achille Onorate/Malcolm Page, Mascalzone Latino, Jr. ; -9-3-4-8-9 = 33
5.) Alessandro Rombelli/Daniele Cassinari, STIG ; 11-1-2-23-9- = 46
6.) Richard Davies/Charlie McKee, Section 16 ; 20-16-22-6-2-3 = 47
7.) Liam Kilroy/Steve Hunt, Wildman ; 3-2-20 = 25
8.) Russ Lucas/Harry Melges III, Shimmer ; 5-6-16 = 27
9.) Paul Reilly/Andy Burdick, Red Sky Sailing Team ; 12-22--9-5-8 = 56
10.) Naofumi Kamei/Manu Weiller, Mamma Aiuto! ; 17-21--13-11-5 = 67
Day Two Highlight Video
Report by Event Media