Melges 20 World Championship 2016: Day 3

The winner of the day is Alexander Novoselov’s Victor!

On Saturday, 27th of August, the third day of the main regatta of Melges 20 class, World Championship 2016, ended in Scarlino, Italy. Waiting for the wind is a common thing for yachtsmen, but it is so unfortunate when there is no wind during the main regattas of the season. The best teams from all around the world are there, and the wind is gone. Sadly, this happened on the third day of the Championship. The first day was cheerful and all three planned races were held, during the second day there were two, but on the third day, merely one race was possible.

The weather forecast for Saturday and Sunday was disappointing from the beginning, but there was hope. After hours ashore and on the water the race had a very rough start.

“The Racing Committee gave us several starts but due to the lack of wind they called us back,” says Maxim Logutenko (Path), “During the sixth race of the regatta we raced under the Black Flag. The wind was from the left at that moment and almost everyone in the fleet was trying to start next to the pin. As a result, there was a tight crowd and several collisions occurred. The lack of wind made it very difficult to get out of this situation for many teams. So everyone who started well also finished with a significant margin. Our team had a good start; we were fighting for the top 10, but we lost some time and came 15th. The wind was shifting but it was enough for the racing. The racing committee had to give at least one start, since it is the main regatta of the season, so they did their best. In the end, as I already said those who started first had a good finish as well. The wind was quite stable, though only one side worked and it was almost impossible to outrun other boats.

After today’s races the range of the candidates for the victory narrowed down to three teams. The Russian teams are tightly packed in the second half of top 20 teams. The World Championship has quite different level of skills and fleet, but we have to keep fighting. Our teams sometimes succeed and sometimes not, but we should be happy that the major part of Russians are in the top 20. Two out of six races so far were won by Russians and that’s a great result!”

In these rough situations Alexander Novoselov’s Victor, with Italians Stefano Cherin and Andrea Tesei, came out on top. The yacht, named in honor of the son of the owner and helmsman, was in the lead from start to finish. Alexander Novoselov’s victory was in one of the crucial races of the Championship!

“We did not believe that we might win this race till the very end,” shared Alexander Novoselov, “We were in the lead from the start and we were so nervous! With my mind, I knew that we could win, but to win a race in the World Championship is something beyond my mind. On one side, we got lucky; on the other side; we just worked it all out pretty well. I do not know if we completely deserved the 1st place but I am happy anyway. Our tactician did a great job and we slipped through a small ‘window’ near the pin, and people started banging on each other already after that. On the clear wind, we controlled the fleet the whole way. When you are in the lead with a margin it’s important not to make capital mistakes.”

“I have been in the Melges 20 class for already 3 years,” Alexander continues, “I race in RC 44 as well and feel more confined in that class. The team consists of eight people there and the role of the helmsman is much smaller than on the Melges 20. I like racing on a big boat but it feels absolutely different. On one side, there is the power, speed and strength, but on the other side, I do not feel as hyped up as when I compete with 60 other boats. We move up in the rankings of RC 44 slowly but confidently: we had 4th place in Sotogrande, 3rd place in Portsmouth, now we are waiting for regatta in Cascais. It took a while before good international competitors gathered together, now there are people from Italy, New Zeeland, Australia, the USA, Great Britain and Russia. By the way, some Russians, namely Anton Sergeev and Veleriy Zacarinskiy, are also here in Scarlino on the World Championship.
When I just started competing in the Melges 20 class, it seemed that people here are not very friendly, but then I realized that you should race several times together before they will start opening up. Then we started to become friends. Sportsmen are truly decent and simple people, it’s nice to be here!”


Victor has now the best position among all Russian teams (12th place in general ranking). Oleg Evdokimenko’s Kotyara is 15th, Vladimir Prosikin Nika is 17th, Anatoly Karachinskiy’s Path is 18th and Valentin Zavadnikov’s Synergy and Igor Rytov’s Russian Bogatyrs are on the 19th and 20th places respectively.

Among the international leaders of the Melges 20, Pacific Yankee had a quite good day on Saturday. Drew Freides’ team is still one of the top contenders for the gold, and after they started this day on the 3rd place, they have an advantage of 4 points. In one of the interviews, Drew told us about the tactics of his team: do not give up, try to race as stable as possible and minimize the loss of points. Today they followed that motto well.
So far, they have the most stable results compared to others: 6th, 2nd, 5th, 4th, 2nd and 3rd places (the result of their first race is discounted).

Michael Illbruck’s Pinta did not perform at their best today: they came 32nd, and fortunately this result will not count towards their final performance on the World Championship. Achille Onorato’s Mascalzone Latino came 4th in the sixth race of the Championship, and is 6 points behind Pinta.

This trio, Pacific Yankee, Pinta and Mascalzone Latino, are the top contenders for the champion title in the World Championship. Because of the Saturday’s unsatisfactory results other teams are lagging behind.

Rob Wilber’s Cinghiale, who won the fifth race, is on the 4th position now. Liam Kilroy’s WildMan stands in 5th.

Frankly speaking, the Kilroy family was not in luck this Saturday: Liam finished 51st and John was 43rd. Moreover, the WildMan had quite some damage.

Most of the final results have already been determined barring any incidents, but everything will be set in stone on the last day of the regatta.

The races will start at 12.00