by Joy Dunigan
International Rolex Regatta 2013. The final day of racing at the 2013 OtterBox® Melges 32 Virgin Islands Sailing Series Event No. 2, held in conjunction with the 40th Anniversary edition of the International Rolex Regatta, hosted by the St. Thomas Yacht Club (STYC) awarded 21-year old Dalton DeVos on Delta division honors.
2013 Rolex International Regatta | 2013 OtterBox® Melges 32 Virgin Island Sailing Series Champion - Dalton DeVos, Delta
In addition to winning his first ever Melges 32 regatta, he also went home with one of four Rolex watches presented as International Regatta trophies.
DeVos first sailed in the fleet at the raw age of 18, alongside of his father Doug. Now, some three years later, Dalton has driven his Delta Melges 32 to victory in St. Thomas accompanied by none other than world famous tactican Jonathan McKee and crew comprised of Morgan Reeser, Zach Hurst, Cody Schlup, William Sleeman, Linda Lindquist-Bishop and Nate Smith.
Finishing a proud second overall was Jason Carroll aboard Argo, followed by Richard Goransson's Inga From Sweden in third.
Richard Goransson, Inga From Sweden - 2013 Otterbox® Melges 32 Virgin Islands Sailing Series - International Rolex Regatta
The last triptych of races were held offshore in comparison to the previous days 'bay style' racing. Windward/leeward configurations, a solid 2-3 feet of chop and an absolutely near perfect 12-15 knots of breeze greeted the nine-strong fleet for the final Sunday afternoon showdown. From the very start, it appeared that boat speed would play a big part in the success of whoever came out on top. It would be an absolute necessity to win.
Ryan DeVos on Volpe came out with all guns firing upwind. After a great start, he took an immediate lead to round the mark in first, chased by Roberto Tomasini Grinover's Robertissima and Mark Plaxton on INTAC. Ryan extended throughout the race taking the win, Tomasini Grinover was second while Plaxton settled for third.
Mark Plaxton, INTAC - 2013 Otterbox® Melges 32 Virgin Islands Sailing Series - International Rolex Regatta
Race Two placed Carroll out front fast. He punched it on the starting line extending almost instantly. Ryan DeVos tried chasing him down but his effort was futile despite his own separation from the fleet in an effort to catch Carroll. Carroll easily took the win, followed by Ryan DeVos, and Tomasini Grinover finished up in third.
The stage was now set for a grande finale style face-off. Dalton DeVos had finished a disappointing sixth in the second race of the day. This result, combined with Carroll's bullet meant the two were tied in points - 24 each.
It was going to be do or die, as every spectator held their breath for the start. Carroll was hot off the pin end, while DeVos took to the committee boat side, splitting the difference from the get go - Carroll left and DeVos right. Tomasini Grinover beat the fleet to the top mark to take a solid lead ahead of Goransson in second. Carroll and Dalton DeVos battled hard as the two rounded almost dead last. DeVos found some clean air on the first run to the gate eventually leaving Carroll behind. Tomasini triumphed to take the race bullet, Goransson claimed second while DeVos rallied to finish third and won the overall regatta title and trophy.
Jason Carroll, Argo - 2013 Otterbox® Melges 32 Virgin Islands Sailing Series - International Rolex Regatta
Fantastic prizes awaited the Melges 32 teams at the beachside awards ceremony held during the early evening at STYC. Prizes included gorgeous event trophies, OtterBox® Virgin Island Sailing Series and a beautiful Rolex watch for the overall division winner. OtterBox® prizes were also supplied to the other winning teams at the prize giving such as defender cases, lanyards and product vouchers.
The Beat Goes On
The International Rolex Regatta marks the second stop on the OtterBox® Virgin Island Sailing Series. With two events complete, Jason Carroll is now the new series leader, ahead of Roberto Tomasini Grinover by one little point. Seated third and fourth are Ryan DeVos and Richard Goransson with equal points. Thanks to a nice win in St. Thomas, Dalton DeVos rounds out the top five.
As with every event there are tons of individuals that deserve high recognition. Without their support and assistance, the second edition of the OtterBox® M32VISS would not have been possible. The International Melges 32 Class Association (IM32CA) wishes to thank PRO Dave Brennan and his impeccable race committee for their hard work and great race management. A very special thanks to event host, the St. Thomas Yacht Club, and most especially a multitude of thanks to Bill Canfield and Peter Holmberg for their warm welcome and constant help with getting the fleet well acclimated to U.S. Virgin Islands life.
The International Melges 32 Class Association would like to also thank specifically the incredible customer service and product support provided by Melges USA and Melges Europe. Both Andy Burdick and Federico Michetti were on hand in St. Thomas servicing the Melges 32 fleet.
2013 Rolex International Regatta | 2013 OtterBox® Melges 32 Virgin Island Sailing Series Champions - Dalton DeVos, Delta (Left to right - Cody Schlup, William Sleeman, Zach Hurst, Jonathan McKee, Linda Lindquist-Bishop, Morgan Reeser, Nate Smith and Dalton DeVos) - 2013 Otterbox® Melges 32 Virgin Islands Sailing Series - International Rolex Regatta
Top Five Results (After ten races, one discard)
1.) Dalton DeVos/Jonathan McKee, Delta; 1-2-3--1-5-1-5-6-3 = 27
2.) Jason Carroll/Cameron Appleton, Argo; 7-4-1-3-6-2-3-4-1-[10/RAF] = 31
3.) Richard Goransson/Hamish Pepper, Inga From Sweden; 3-5-2-4-5-1-6-7--2 = 35
4.) Ryan DeVos/Ed Baird, Volpe; -3-5-5-3-3-7-1-2-7 = 36
5.) Roberto Tomasini Grinover/Vasco Vascotto, Robertissima; 6-6-4--2-6-8-2-3-1 = 38
International Rolex Regatta Melges 32