It was another incredible day of racing at the 2010 Melges 32 World Championship, hosted by the St. Francis Yacht Club, San Francisco.
Three heats delivered three different winners under absolutely stunning conditions. Overnight leader Andy Lovell on Rougarou was toppled by Luca Lalli's B-Lin Sailing now in first place overall, while Alex Jackson's Leenabaca remains in third.
An early postponement led to getting started about an hour later than scheduled with the breeze beginning to settle in for the first race start. The third attempt was the charm with Doug Douglas' Goombay Smash stepping out front of the fleet and Martin Knetig's Black Mamba pouring on the speed as they rounded the top mark in first and second. "There was a little more pressure on the left, and a little line bias. We were fast off the line in that first race for sure." said Marco Constant, on board with Douglas. "No matter what, we are having heaps of fun." Douglas was simply lit downwind as he passed through the gate in first, this time followed by Jason Carroll on Argo. The two finished respectively with France's Jean Francois Cruette on Teasing Machine finishing third.
Race two witnessed the speed of Jeff Ecklund's STAR. Taking to left side early as the breeze filled in further, Ecklund rounded the weathermark in first, followed by John Porter on Full Throttle in second and Lalli's B-Lin Sailing. Ecklund pulled away from the fleet leg-by-leg to take the win. Reigning World Champion Pieter Taselaar on Bliksem got in on the mix to take second. Finishing third, Steve Pugh on Taboo had an incredible race.
The last and final race of the day took place around 4:30 p.m., yet brought on the best breeze of the day with another five-legged upwind finish. First around was Steve Howe on Warpath with a solid set taking him to the gate firmly in the lead. "Today was great
." said Warpath tactician Morgan Larson. "We finally got around the course quite well
." Howe dominated that late afternoon racing scene with Lalli grabbing on for second place position, chasing for the top spot. Kip Meadows and his roXanne Melges 32 had a much better day taking third. All finished in respective order.
After six races and a discard, Lalli now leads the Melges 32 fleet in San Francisco, moving him up a full three notches to take first place, sliding overnight leader Andy Lovell into second. Alex Jackson remains in third, Porter moves up five slots for fourth and Jeff Ecklund's outstanding performance today edged him up three places to finish fifth overall.
Racing continues on Thursday with at least two more races. To watch the racing live and keep up-to-date with all the action visit www.melges32worlds.com
Top Ten Results (After 6 Races 1 discard)
1. Luca Lalli/Lorenzo Bressani, B-lin Sailing; -6-1-8-8-2 = 25
2. Andy Lovell/Johnny Lovell, Rougarou; 2-4-3--13-6 = 28
3. Alex Jackson/Rob Greenhalgh, Leenabarca; 10-5-4--6-5 = 30
4. John Porter/Jonathan McKee, Full Throttle; 3--10-4-4-11 = 32
5. Jeff Ecklund/Harry Melges III, STAR; 6--9-13-1-8 = 37
6. Doug Douglas/Russell Coutts, Goombay Smash; 13-1-14-1--9 = 38
7. Pieter Taselaar/Jeremy Wilmot, Bliksem; -12-2-14-2-23 = 43
8. Steve Howe/Morgan Larson, Warpath; [33/DSQ]-9-17-5-12-1 = 44
9. Kip Meadows/Andy Horton, roXanne; 17-7-13-6--3 = 46
10.Jean Francois Cruette/Christian Ponthieu, Teasing Machine; -17-6-3-16-7 = 49