Please select your home edition
Edition
Ancasta Ker 40+ 728x90

Sperry Top-Sider Melges 24 Worlds - Porter snatches world title

by International Melges 24 Association on 6 Oct 2013
Sperry Top-Sider Melges 24 Worlds - Porter celebrates after snatching world title © IMCA/ Pierrick Contin http://www.pierrickcontin.com
American Brian Porter on Full Throttle took fourth in the final race of the Sperry Top-Sider Melges 24 World Championship 2013 today to finally lay claim to the title he has been trying to win for many years.

Porter snatched victory by three points from 2013 Melges 24 European Champion Italian Flavio Favini at the helm of Franco Rossini's Swiss entry Blu Moon who had led by a single point going into the final day.

Favini didn't give in without a fight however, recovering from a fifteenth place first windward mark rounding to pull back to sixth at the finish - just two places away from snatching back overall victory.

A second place in today's race for Denmark's Kim Christensen on Soffe 2 elevated him from fourth overnight on to the podium into third place.


A win in the final race for American Bora Gulari on West Marine Rigging/New England Ropes - his second of the championship - moved him up one overall place to fourth. A tenth today for Nathan Wilmot on Conor Clarke's Irish entry Embarr dropped him from third to fifth overall.

In the Corinthian Division (no professional sailors allowed) a seventh for American Don Jesberg on Viva was good enough to see him crowned 2013 Melges 24 Corinthian Champion by three points from second placed fellow American Loren Colahan on Lounge Act. A Corinthian race win today for Canadian Michael Bond on Recidivist earned him the final podium place.

Race Detail
The 2013 edition of the Melges 24 World Championship came down to a single ninth race decider on the final day after light winds resulted in just one of the two scheduled races being being sailed.

Winds were all but non-existent at the scheduled 1200 midday start time, but after waiting patiently for nearly two and a half hours, the race committee were finally able to set a start line in a fitful 5 - 6 knots of breeze. Eventually, after one general recall and a short delay to allow the breeze to settle properly, the fleet got away under an I and Z penalty flag combination.


All eyes were on the expected battle between Italy's Flavio Favini at the helm of Franco Rossini's Swiss entry Blu Moon who topped the leaderboard after eight races and second placed Brian Porter on Full Throttle from America, just one point behind. Third after eight races was Australian Nathan Wilmot helming Conor Clarke's Irish entry Embarr was also very much within striking distance of the title.

Halfway up the first beat, Favini and Wilmot were in close company in the middle left of the course while Porter had tried his hand on the right hand side.

At the top mark it was the American who came out best, rounding in third behind Gulari in second and Italy's Giovanni Pizzatti on Maidollis in first. Favini meanwhile had plenty of work to do, rounding in fifteenth place, two places ahead of Wilmot.

On the downwind leg Gulari slid past Pizzatti to round in first at the leeward gate and Porter followed the Italian around in third. Favini made the biggest gains however, passing nine boats on the run to round in sixth place.

Seeing that Porter had opted for the right hand side of the second beat, Favini chose the left leeward gate buoy to see what gains he could make on the left.


When the boats converged at the windward mark for the second time, Gulari had extended his lead and Porter had moved into second. Favini was still in sixth but had considerably reduced the gap to the leading two.

The breeze was a painfully light five to six knots on the final run, making life difficult for the leaders and giving the chasing pack a chance to steal a march.

Having rounded the windward mark in fourth Denmark's Christensen decided to gybe early in a search for wind on the right of the course. By the bottom of the run his gamble had paid off and when he gybed back towards the finish he had sailed around the bows of Porter and Pizzatti into second and hot on the heels of leader Gulari.

At the finish, Gulari had held off the Danish crew to take the win, Pizzatti came home third, and Porter fourth.

Behind them, Favini was still in sixth but on a charge. Approaching the line the Italian all but rolled over the top of a group of tightly bunched boats and when this group gybed simultaneously for the finish, for a few moments it looked like the Swiss boat might sneak through to leeward at the left hand end of the line to snatch fifth and the championship.


In the end though he didn't have enough momentum to carry him through and had to settle for seventh place in the race and second overall.

Back ashore afterwards and having had time to process his world championship victory, Porter was quick to pay tribute to the hard work of his crew Andy Burdick, Matt Woodworth and Federico Michetti.

Amazingly, for Full Throttle trimmer Michetti, sailing as part of the Full Throttle crew for the first time at a world championship, this was his fifth Melges 24 world title - a record unsurpassed by anyone and one that he confessed had not sunk in yet.

'I am still a little confused, trying to understand what has happened,' he said with a beaming smile. 'It has been a great championship, made better by the fact that I sailed with some good friends. They have been unbelievable to sail with and I am I am so proud to be part of the Full Throttle crew.'

Porter himself said his first ever Melges 24 World Championship win felt all the sweeter given he had finished in second place on no less than three previous occasions.

'I have been trying to win this thing since the very first Melges 24 World Championship,' he said. 'i have come pretty close, second three times, so this has been an elusive target for us.


'Today, that race was nerve-wracking, we had got into second and then lost a couple of boats and that made it close in the end,' Porter said. 'But we have a great team and we have worked hard for this, so to win feels really good.'

Having taken so long to win it, Porter said he hoped to try to defend his title at the 2014 Melges 24 World Championship in Geelong, Australia at the end of January.

'I am working on that right now,' he said. 'I would love to defend in Australia - it's been a dream of mine to go to there and sail. I know so many great Australian sailors and I have competed against those guys a lot, so I would love to be there.'



Colligo Marine 660x82InSunSport - NZZhik Yachting 660x82

Related Articles

It’s Chuck’s fault!
The blame rests squarely with the much venerated, and truly celebrated US sports photographer, Chuck Lantz The blame rests squarely with the much venerated, and truly celebrated US sports photographer, Chuck Lantz. Had he not shown me this image he took during the recent Rolex Big Boat Series on San Francisco Bay, then this editorial would not have come to pass.
Posted today at 2:36 am
Oman Air stay top of Extreme Sailing Series table with podium place
Oman Air stayed top of the overall leaderboard after posting a third place in Act six and shifted focus to the next Act. Oman Air stayed top of the overall leaderboard after posting a third place in Act six in Madeira and immediately shifted their focus to the next Act in Lisbon, Portugal, in two weeks.
Posted on 25 Sep
Olympic Gold medalist and Volvo Ocean Race winner up for WS Board
Torben Grael (BRA) is amongst the 15 nominations for one of seven places on the Board of Directors of World Sailing Torben Grael (BRA) is amongst the 15 nominations for one of seven places on the Board of Directors of World Sailing in November. The five times Olympic medalist, Volvo Ocean Race winner and several times America's Cup competitor will bring a much needed sailing edge to the Board of World Sailing if he can navigate the politics of the controlling body of the sport.
Posted on 25 Sep
Norauto foils to victory at the GC32 La Reserva de Sotogrande Cup
Racing in a light wind Minoprio’s desire to win the leeward position on the start line put Norauto in front in all races Racing in a light westerly Levante wind, Adam Minoprio’s desire to win the leeward position on the start line put Norauto in front in all three races, and he went on to win two of them.
Posted on 25 Sep
Team Tilt finish second at the GC32 La Reserva de Sotogrande Cup
Team Tilt added a second place to scoreboard this weekend at the penultimate event of what has been a successful season The seven crew members on board the 32-foot flying catamaran posted three outright wins from 15 races to finish second overall after Adam Minoprio on Norauto. Team Engie, skippered by Sebastien Rogues finished in third place.
Posted on 25 Sep
Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - Images from Régates Royales
The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales. The final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes in the 38th Régates Royales with classic yachts and Dragons. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this gallery of images from the penultimate day of the regatta.
Posted on 25 Sep
Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge - More images from Régates Royales
Second gallery from the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge at Cannes The 38th Régates Royales, the final round of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge is underway at Cannes. Eugenia Bakunova of mainsail.ru was on the water at Cannes and provided this second gallery of images from the penultimate day.
Posted on 25 Sep
World Sailing - Henderson sets out foundations of his President bid
Paul Henderson is standing for another term as President to get some significant and vital issues facing Sailing address Paul Henderson is standing for another term as President to get some significant and vital issues facing Sailing addressed by sailors with their input both individually and via their International Class Associations. Henderson sets out below what he believes will be the foundations of his next Presidency.
Posted on 25 Sep
World Sailing President nominated by 45 Member National Associations
Incumbent World Sailing President, Carlo Croce (ITA) has welcomed nominations from 45 Member National Associations Incumbent World Sailing President, Carlo Croce (ITA) has nominations from 45 Member National Associations [MNAs] for his re-election as the President of Sailing’s International Federation. Nominations for the position of President have been formally published by World Sailing and show widespread support for Croce.
Posted on 25 Sep
Swiss stars Alinghi lose mast in collision in action-packed day
The Extreme Sailing Series™ lived up to its name on the penultimate day of Act 6 in Madeira The Extreme Sailing Series™ lived up to its name on the penultimate day of Act 6 in Madeira as a collision between rivals Alinghi and Red Bull Sailing Team resulted in the Swiss crew losing their mast.
Posted on 25 Sep