by Joy Dunigan
When the last boat has been measured, sails signed, stamped and declared and the final crew member weighed, one of the greatest World Championship battles ever to take place in International Melges 32 Class (IM32CA) history will commence on the beautiful waters of Porto Rotondo in Sardinia, Italy on 18-22 September 2013. The World Championship is also the final act of the very hotly contested Audi Sailing Series.
2012 Melges 32 World Championship
The players list is long and distinguished as the field of competitors represent nine countries from around the world. First-class tacticians saturate the twenty-six strong fleet including Cameron Appleton, Andrea Casale, Branko Brcin, Lorenzo Bressani, Steve Hunt, Michele Paoletti, Chris Rast, Hamish Pepper, Manuel Weiller, Daniele Cassinari, Gabriele Benussi, Jesper Radich, Kazuto Seki, Pierluigi Fornelli, Vasco Vascotto, Fabio Mazzoni, Chris Nicolson, Michele Ivaldi, Andrey Kirilyuk, Pietro Sibello, Andrea Fornaro, Richard Clarke and former Melges 32 Class World Champions Nathan Wilmot (2009) and Paul Goodison (2012). From the high-profile America's Cup arena, current Luna Rossa Afterguard Francesco Bruni returns to the fleet and former Alinghi tactician Brad Butterworth will compete in the class for the very first time.
Several teams have enjoyed great success this year, however Roberto Tomasini Grinover's Robertissima and Lanfranco Cirillo's Fantastica have proven to be the toughest teams to beat.
Tomasini Grinover triumphed early, rising to the occasion in the Caribbean to become the 2013 OtterboxTM Melges 32 Virgin Islands Sailing Series Champion. Cirillo, on the other hand, has been hard at work developing a firm grip on the overall lead of the prestigious Audi Sailing Series, after winning two of the four events - Porto Ercole and Portoferraio - completed thus far.
2013 Melges 32 Key West Race Week Champion Andrea Pozzi's Bombarda is seated second overall. Edoardo Lupi's Torpyone is currently third.
Other teams that should not be underestimated include Gaeta Champion Valentin Zavadnikov on Synergy GT, Jason Carroll on Argo, Deneen Demourkas on Groovederci, Keisuke Suzuki's Swing and lastly, but certainly not least is Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino.
The IM32CA is proud to welcome to the brightest stage of all, fleet newcomers Roberto Mazzucato on Margherita, Luca Simeone on RIMYG, Pavel Kunetsov on Tavatuy-Water Way and newly crowned Audi Melges 20 Sailing Series Champion Alessandro Rombelli aboard Azimut by STIG.
Full Entry List (Owner/Tactician)
1.) Jason Carroll/Cameron Appleton, Argo
2.) Giangiacomo Serena di Lapagio/Andrea Casale, Atlantica 19
3.) Mauro Mocchegiani/Branko Brcin, Audi Italia Sailing Team
4.) Alessandro Rombelli/Paul Goodison, Azimut by STIG
5.) Andrea Pozzi/Lorenzo Bressani, Bombarda
6.) Filippo Pacinotti/Nathan Wilmot, Brontolo HH
7.) Malcolm Gefter/Steve Hunt, Celeritas
8.) Lanfranco Cirillo/Michele Paoletti, Fantastica
9.) Edoardo Pavesio/Chris Rast, FRA MARTINA
10.) Deneen Demourkas/Francesco Bruni, Groovederci
11.) Richard Goransson/Hamish Pepper, Inga From Sweden 3
12.) Naofumi Kamei/Manuel Weiller, Mamma Aiuto!
13.) Roberto Mazzucato/Daniele Cassinari, Margherita
14.) Vincenzo Onorato/Gabriele Benussi, Mascalzone Latino
15.) Tony Buckingham, Brad Butterworth, Ngoni
16.) Wolfgang Stolz/Jesper Radich, Opus One
17.) Diasuke Kimura/Kazuto Seki, Quetefeek
18.) Luca Simeone/Pierluigi Fornelli, RIMYG
19.) Roberto Tomasini Grinover/Vasco Vascotto, Robertissima
20.) Andrea Ferrari/Fabio Mazzoni, Spirit of Nerina
21.) Keisuke Suzuki/Chris Nicolson, Swing
22.) Valentin Zavadnikov/Michele Ivaldi, Synergy GT
23.) Pavel Kunetsov/Andrey Kirilyuk, Tavatuy-Water Way
24.) Edoardo Lupi/Pietro Sibello, Torpyone
25.) Andrea Lacorte/Andrea Fornaro, Vitamina
26.) Yukihiro Ishida/Richard Clarke, Yasha Samurai