Please select your home edition
Edition
Melges IC37 2019 Leaderboard
Product Feature
Gill Elements Womens Rugby Shirt
Gill Elements Womens Rugby Shirt
Boat Insurance from Noble Marine


Full racing risks
New for old cover
www.noblemarine.co.uk

2019 Melges IC37 US National Championship at Newport, Rhode Island - Overall

by Stuart Streuli 30 Sep 2019 02:55 BST 27-29 September 2019
2019 Melges IC37 National Championship © Paul Todd / Outside Images

They won the first race and the last race, and the inaugural Melges IC37 National Championship, but it was far from routine regatta victory for the crew of the Members Only syndicate, which is led by New York Yacht Club members Jay Cross, Ben Kinney and Hannah Swett. Of course, nothing good ever comes easy at this level of the sport, which only made the win that much more significant.

"It's an honor, it's a real thrill," said Cross, who steered the boat for this regatta. "Nobody knew anything when they were starting out; the class was new, the boats were new, the crews were new to each other. To get through the whole season and pull it together at the very end is very satisfying and a lot of fun."

The Melges IC37 is an innovative 37-foot one-design raceboat created by the New York Yacht Club. The class provides thrilling racing in matched, high-performance 37-foot boats with minimum hassle. The strict class rules specify one-design sails, standardized rig tune and coed, amateur crew. The Club purchased the first 20 boats and charters them to members through a concierge racing program that provides a top-flight racing experience for a reasonable price and without the logistical challenges of owning a boat. Of the 20 competitors in the 2019 Melges IC37 National Championship, 17 were participants in the Club's charter program. For more on the Melges IC37 Class, click here.

After an all-but-flawless start to the regatta—a first, two seconds and a third, respectively, in the first four races—the Members Only team hit a few speed bumps and found themselves with work to do in the final race, sailed earlier today on Rhode Island Sound under bright sun and unseasonable warm temperatures. As the race committee and the fleet of 20 boats waited for the breeze to shift from the north to the southeast and solidify, the Members Only team reviewed their options for the final race.

"[Tactician Steven Benjamin] was saying all day, 'Let's not not worry about the numbers,'" said Cross. "After the first two races didn't go so well then we go the scores out and figured out the numbers. But we still knew we had to have a great race. When the wind came in from the southeast, it had some punch to it. It was a really exciting last race, hard-charging IC37 conditions."

If they won the race, they won the regatta. But, due to the specifics of the regatta's tie-breaking procedure, a finish of second or worse would require the team to put at least one boat between themselves and Chris Lewis' Qubit team to ensure the win. There were also a handful of other teams waiting to pounce if the top two each had poor races.

Cross and crew had a strong start and were able to play their favored right side. Halfway up the first leg, the team was positioned comfortably in the lead and able to eliminate much, if not all, of the drama from the regatta,. Members Only won the race after leading around all three turning marks. Chris Lewis' team put in a strong effort in the final race, finishing fourth, which placed them solidly in second for the regatta.

The National Championship is the final event of the inaugural summer season for the Melges IC37 class. While a fleet of privately-owned boats will head south for a winter series in Fort Lauderdale, the New York Yacht Club's fleet of 20 boats will go into a shed at New England Boatworks in Portsmouth until spring time. Cross, a veteran of sailing campaigns in many boats, was effusive in his praise for the charter program.

"I think the program is fantastic," said Cross. "The idea that you can have such great racing for an an affordable price, but also such low hassle. Organizing nine crew isn't easy, but short of that you avoid a lot of the other headaches involved with owning a big boat. You can't ask for any more from a club race program;. To start [the season] with a win and finish with a win was as good or better than we'd hoped to do. We'd hope to win the trials for Rolex New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup, but you can't do everything. From our point of view, the program exceeded our expectations."

Overall Results:

1. Members Only, Jay Cross, Ben Kinney & Hannah Swett (Jamestown, R.I.) 25 points
2. Qubit, Chris Lewis (Seabrook, Texas) 27 points
3. Double Jointed, Andy Fisher & Ray Wulff (Annapolis, Md.) 34 points
4. RUSH, Tom Stark & Ben Wagner (Jupiter, Fla.) 38 points
5. Das Blau Max, Cory & Mark Sertl (Jamestown, R.I.) 41 points
6. Blazer II, Christopher Culver (Newport, R.I.) 43 points
7. Vigilant, John Hele (Newport, R.I.) 43 points
8. Arethusa, Phil Lotz (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) 52 points
9. Old School, Ganson Evans (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) 53 points
10. Midnight Blue, Alexandros Michas (New York, N.Y.) 56 points

Full results available here.

Related Articles

Clean your bottom - DIY Care & Products
Do you want to add speed to your sailing campaign? Do you want to add speed to your sailing campaign? One of the best ways to do this is to make sure your hull is clean and slick. Posted on 17 Jan
Built in Zenda
75 years of quality boat building 1945-2020 at Melges Although the company evolved from humble beginnings as a wooden flat-bottom rowboat builder to the creators of the highest quality hulls, sails, covers and accessories, the commitment to detail, community building, and passion for the sport has remained. Posted on 10 Jan
Inside Melges: The January Issue
Melges IC37 Class returns to sunny Fort Lauderdale The Melges IC37 Class returns to sunny Fort Lauderdale for the second event of the Winter Series. Racers are looking forward to taking refuge in the warm temperatures and tough competition. Posted on 8 Jan
HYS Hamble Winter Series overall
Yacht of the Series trophy goes to Protis With wind from the North East, and a fair bit of it, the CV went to East Knoll (4H) to run the final day of the HYS Hamble Winter Series. Most were despatched upwind to William with the smaller boats to the slightly closer hamblewinterseries.com. Posted on 4 Dec 2019
HYS Hamble Winter Series week 7
Wind stubbornly refuses to materialise There are four basic requirements for yacht racing; boats, a race team, water and wind. The first three were no problem on week 7 of the HYS Hamble Winter Series, but number four stubbornly refused to materialise. Posted on 27 Nov 2019
Pacific Yankee wins Melges IC37 Fall Cup
Inaugural Winter Series event held at Lauderdale Yacht Club The Melges IC37 Class kicked off its inaugural Winter Series event with the Fall Cup hosted by Lauderdale Yacht Club November 22-24. Florida pulled out all the stops to challenge the sailors for the event with a rolling sea state Posted on 25 Nov 2019
An accurate ping leads to a better start
Preferred instruments handpicked for you We all know that a bad start can cost you the race, so why leave it up to chance? We've handpicked our preferred instruments for you - including the new Vakaros Atlas Tactical Compass. Posted on 23 Nov 2019
Temperature rising for the Melges IC37 Class
2019-20 Winter Series in Fort Lauderdale starts today Wasting no time at all, the North American Melges IC37 Class is capping off the 2019 Season with the start of the 2019-20 Winter Series in Fort Lauderdale, Florida November 22-24. The series will continue with events in January and March. Posted on 22 Nov 2019
HYS Hamble Winter Series week 6
A boat that can party and win at the same time? Week 6 of the HYS Hamble Winter Series dawned with lovely winter sunshine bathing the Solent. As is now becoming the norm, the wind was forecast and indeed was from a northerly direction. The CV Condor made its way to East Knoll. Posted on 20 Nov 2019
NYYC announces historic 2020 regatta schedule
2020 summer in America's sailing capital will be one of the busiest in history It doesn't take perfect vision to see that the 2020 summer in America's sailing capital will be one of the busiest in history. The New York Yacht Club will take full advantage of the New England sailing season, hosting one major event after another Posted on 15 Nov 2019