by Joy Dunigan
Congratulations are in order for Valentin Zavadnikov on Synergy with crew members Alexander Ekimov and Nikolay Kornev, as they are the very first ever Audi Melges 20 Russian Open Champions. Aleksander Ezhikov aboard Pirogovo placed second and Victor Emets' Phantome came third.
2014 Melges 20 Russian Open Championship
In the overall standings, American Wes Whitmyer on Slingshot with Max Fraser and Jonny 'Rockstar' Goldsberry celebrated a string of first place bullets, a second and a fifth to win. Italy's Mirko de Falco on Peccere finished second with Zavadnikov in third.
The event commenced on Friday, May 2 with Whitmyer taking an immediate and aggressive first place stance to lead with a 1-1-7-1 result. With a fine southeast breeze of 12-14 knots, four races were completed with Whitmyer seizing the lead over Ezhikov who - was his closest contention, finishing the day in second. De Falco had a solid day of all third place finishes.
With not enough breeze to sail on Saturday, the tension mounted for Sunday's final four races. Whitmyer maintained a substantial lead to win the event some 10 points ahead of de Falco, his best ever finish in the Audi Melges 20 Class. 2014 Russian Open Champion Zavadnikov had a banner day with a 5-3-1-1 to take the big trophy and title.
The Russian Open Championship was the perfect lead-up event to what is going to be yet another amazing forthcoming weekend of racing in Porto Ercole for the Audi Melges 20 fleet - the 2014 Audi-Tron Sailing Series Event No. 2, May 10-11 hosted by Circolo Nautico della Vela Argentario, organized by BPSE and Melges Europe.
Top Five Overall Results (Final - After eight races, one discard)
1.) Wes Whitmyer/Max Fraser, Slingshot; 1-1--1-1-1-2-5 = 12
2.) Mirko de Falco/Paolo Scutellaro, Peccere; 3-3-3-3-3--4-3 = 22
3.) Valentin Zavadnikov/Alexander Ekimov, Synergy; 8-5--5-5-3-1-1 = 28
4.) Stefano Speroni/Lorenzo Bodini, Maolca; 6-6-4-2-2-4--6 = 30
5.) Aleksander Ezhikov/Daniil Odintsov, Pirogovo; 2-2-1-7--7-5-7 = 31
Top Three Russian Open Championship (Final - After eight races, one discard)
1.) Valentin Zavadnikov/Alexander Ekimov, Synergy; 8-5--5-5-3-1-1 = 28
2.) Aleksander Ezhikov/Daniil Odintsov, Pirogovo; 2-2-1-7--7-5-7 = 31
3.) Victor Emets/Maxim Logutenko, Phantome; 5--5-6-6-6-3-8 = 39
Click here for full results
Melges 20 website