The 2015 Melges 24 World and Continental Ranking series featured 14 events across Europe, North America and Australia including the main title event of the year – Melges 24 World Championship incorporating National Championships and major regional events all around the world. Every continent hosted four to six ranking series events in conclusion of which the winners of continental rankings were found out and World Ranking consisted of all events from three continental series. 213 competitors from 23 countries took part.
As for the final score of the 2015 Melges 24 World Ranking four events did count, then with two victories from the opening and season ending events of the Europeans Sailing Series along with a high fourth position at the Melges 24 Worlds in Denmark and with a fifth place at the Riva del Garda regatta Italian Riccardo Simoneschi’s Audi tron secured the overall victory of the World Ranking 2015.
It’s the fourth time in a row since 2012 for Simoneschi’s team to win this ranking making him the sailor with the most victories at the Melges 24 World Ranking Hall of Fame outpacing Swiss Flavio Favini who has been placed to the Hall of Fame in 2008, 2009 and 2011.
Simoneschi took three point victory over Miles Quinton’s Gill Race Team with Geoff Carveth helming from UK, who with the consistently good racing and participation at all the events of the Melges 24 European Sailing Series claimed the victory of the continental ranking. Last year’s winner of the European Corinthian division, Hungarian Kalman Rosznyay’s FGF Sailing Team with Robert Bakoczy in helm proved their stability and performance also in open division claiming third place. Another Hungarian team, Andras Milbich’s Jedi Business with Peter Czegai in helm finished fourth and placing Italian Andrea Pozzi’s team Bombarda Racing fifth, third Hungarian Akos Csolto with Seven-Five-Nine took sixth, Ukrainian Oleg Dyvinets’ Marusia finished seventh, Dutch Ronald Veraar’s Team Kesbeke/Sika/Gill was eighth, David Rowen’s Imagine from UK took ninth and Swiss Michael Good’s Cinghi-Aile rounded out the top ten.
‘I was eager to conquer this goal for a long time’ said Riccardo Simoneschi ‘I’m very proud of this achievement. I’d like to express a sincere thankfulness to my team in particular to tactician Gabriele Benussi, tailer Stefano Orlandi, pitman Federico Buscaglia, bowman Lucia Giorgetti Simoneschi, all top skilled sailors able to create a strong team synergy.’
The second, third and fourth from the World Ranking – Miles Quinton’s Gill Race Team with Geoff Carveth helming and Hungarians Kalman Rosznyay’s FGF Sailing Team with Robert Bakoczy in helm and Andras Milbich’s Jedi Business with Peter Czegai in helm, filled the top three podium positions of the 2015 Melges 24 European Sailing Series placing Ukrainian Oleg Dyvinets’ Marusia to fourth position as the best Corinthian team.
Holding the perpetual trophy of the Melges 24 European Sailing Series, donated to the class by the former IM24CA Chairman Riccardo Simoneschi, Miles Quinton said: ‘We have had a fantastic season on Gill Race Team leading the European Sailing Series for most of the series, a victory that was sealed at the Worlds in Denmark with a fifth place overall and winning the Dutch Open in Medemblik. We also retained our UK Nationals title. I thank my amazing team Geoff Carveth, Nigel Young, Will Goldsmith and Catherine Alton as well as our sponsors Gill Marine for making it happen. The Melges24 is still the most competitive and exciting sports boat in sailing so we are looking forward to next season and the Worlds in Miami!
In the North American Ranking 2015 Steve and Cathy Boho’s The 300 of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin claims the title. With a dominant victory at the Fall Championship and a top ten finish at CSR US Nationals, Steve Boho with a crew ofHeidi Rittmeyer, Bill Goldsberry, Ted Keller and Brian Hutchinson managed to hold off Canadian Richard Reid’s Zingara of Toronto for the series win. George Haynie’s Firewater was third overall in the 2015 North American Ranking Series. The happy overall winner, Steve Boho said: ‘Lucky for us the Melges 24 is the most exciting ride among modern-day sport boats.
Australasian Ranking 2015 wins Chris Links on Cavallino winning Australian Nationals and NSW Melges 24 State Championships and being fourth at the Mid Winter International One design regatta with Harley Walters in helm, Links winning by 52.5 points from Robin Deussen’s Red Mist who’s lead ahead of Heath Walters’ Amigos was four points only. For Links and his Cavallino it was the second time to win the ranking as he was the winner of the inaugural ranking in 2013 and was placed on the second position in 2014.
Since its inception in 2001 the Melges 24 World and Continental Rankings have been a huge success and for the International Melges 24 Class Association it’s great to see so many teams from different countries taking part. The highlights of the 2016 season will be definitely Melges 24 European Championship in Hyères, France in September and Melges 24 World Championship in Miami, U.S.in November-December.