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2019 Melges 24 U.S. National Championship at Fairhope, Alabama - Day 1

by USM24CA 24 May 2019 23:24 PDT 22-26 May 2019
2019 Melges 24 U.S. National Championship - Day 1 © Hannah Lee Noll

Opening day at the 2019 U.S. Melges 24 National Championship was HOT, with record-breaking temps and light to moderate breezes out of the South-Southwest. Four races were completed with Fayetteville, Georgia's K.C. Shannon at the helm of Shaka with tactician Jackson Benvenutti taking the overall event lead. Bruce Ayres' Monsoon with Mike Buckley as tactician finished the day solid in second place.

Although the single-digit scoreline did the trick today, third place finisher Michael Goldfarb racing Warcanoe experienced highs and lows. He came away with two out of the four (Race One, Race Three) daily wins.

John Brown's Blind Squirrel felt the full brunt of today's challenging conditions, but found the nut in Race Two taking the bullet ahead of Travis Weisleder's Lucky Dog/Gill Race Team.

Seven-time National Champion Brian Porter racing his famous Full Throttle Melges 24 won Race Four, and said that the racing was light, but beautiful.

"It was light air racing today, but we like the bigger breeze. After two days of great practice racing, today's races were lighter and it is quite warm. In two of the races, we made some mistakes that were costly, but we are ready to back out there tomorrow, and hope to get in six more races by Sunday."

The heat in the Corinthian division matched the warmer than warm conditions. Steve Suddath's 3 half Men enjoyed a nice day on the water, advancing into the all-amateur lead. This is a team that has sailed together for years, so to see them at the forefront is really no surprise, and long overdue.

Lee Eikel's Last Call with Max Albert in the driver's seat is placed just outside of the top ten and is the second overall all-amateur team. Megan Ratliff's Decorum hangs tough in third.

Top Ten Open Results (Preliminary - After Four Races)

1.) USA - KC Shannon, Shaka; 2-7-4-3 = 16
2.) USA - Bruce Ayres, Monsoon; 8-5-3-7 = 23
3.) USA - Michael Goldfarb, Warcanoe; 1-17-1-5 = 24
4.) CAN - Richard Reid, Zingara; 10-8-2-11 = 31
5.) USA - Travis Weisleder, Lucky Dog/ Gill Race Team; 6-2-6-20 = 34
6.) USA - Kevin Welch/ Jeff Madrigalli, MiKEY; 16-12-5-2 = 35
7.) USA - Steve Suddath, 3 half Men; 9-9-9-12 = 39
8.) USA - Brian Porter, Full Throttle; 21-4-14-1 = 40
9.) USA - Sandra Askew, Flying Jenny; 14-16-11-6 = 47
10.) USA - Wes Whitmyer Jr., Slingshot; 11-10-20-8 = 49

Top Five Corinthian Results (Preliminary - After Four Races)

1.) USA - Steve Suddath, 3 half Men; 39 pts.
2.) USA - Lee Eikel/Max Albert, Last Call; 56 pts.
3.) USA - Megan Ratliff/Hunter Ratliff, Decorum; 64 pts.
4.) USA - Ryan Glaze, Gringo; 66 pts.
5.) USA - Gary Shwarting, Obsession; 72 pts.

Top Ten National Ranking Results (Preliminary - After Two Events, Four Races)

1.) USA - Bruce Ayres, Monsoon; 91 pts.
2.) USA - Travis Weisleder, Lucky Dog/Gill Race Team; 88 pts.
3.) USA - KC Shannon, Shaka; 85 pts.
4.) USA - Kevin Welch, MiKEY; 84 pts.
5.) USA - Brian Porter, Full Throttle; 84 pts.
6.) USA - John Brown, Blind Squirrel; 72 pts.
7.) USA - Wes Whitmyer, Slingshot; 71 pts.
8.) USA - Megan Ratliff (C), Decorum; 61 pts.
9.) USA - Steve Suddath (C), 3 half Men; 56 pts.
10.) USA - Steve Boho, The 300; 55 pts.

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