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2022 US Melges 24 Nationals awarded to Pensacola YC, Florida… Lagniappe for the Bushwhacker Cup!

by Talbot Wilson 30 Sep 15:55 BST November 12-14, 2021
Bora Gulari [USA820] with his crew of Kyle Navin, Norman Berge, Ian Liberty and American Magic's CEO/Skipper Terry Hutchinson took second in the inaugural Bushwhacker Cup with a 4-5-1-2-2 record. © Talbot Wilson

It's good news for Pensacola and the south's Finest Yacht Club - Lagniappe... an extra bonus. The U.S. Melges 24 Class Association (USM24CA) has selected Pensacola Yacht Club, home of the annual Melges 24 Bushwhacker Cup - including the Atlantic Coast and Gulf Coast regional class championships for 2021 - to host the 2022 Melges 24 U.S. National Championship. The event is scheduled for Bushwhacker Week, Nov 10-13, 2022.

The USM24CA finalized the decision at their monthly conference call meeting on the Monday before the 2021 National Championship in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan hosted by Crescent Sail Yacht Club Sept 16-19. Tony Stanley, USM24CA's Southeast District Governor, notified Pensacola YC Principal Race Officer Hal Smith and the Bid Committee of their decision.

The USM24CA press release made it official as the Class looks forward for the rest of 2021 and on to 2022:

The U.S. Class is getting excited about the 2022 annual racing calendar. A ton of events are on the schedule that will effectively guide teams through the upcoming Winter season and beyond — the ACC/GCC/Bushwhacker Cup (November), Bacardi Series (December/January), Key West (January), St. Petersburg (February), back to Miami for the Bacardi Cup Invitational (March), Charleston Race Week (April/May), all leading up to the next World Championship hosted by the Lauderdale Yacht Club in Ft. Lauderdale, FL on May 9-15.

2022 National Championship Goes to Pensacola, November 10-13

2022 will see the return of robust West Coast and Midwest local racing events culminating at the next National Championship happening on November 10-13, hosted by the Pensacola Yacht Club. The U.S. Melges 24 Class is proud to make this announcement ahead of the 2021 Nationals. Pensacola has proven many times over that it's perfect if you are looking for an unlimited supply of Bushwhackers, good times, world-class competition and phenomenal race management.

Pensacola Yacht Club accepts the Melges 24 Challenge

"We knew a decision was eminent," said Smith. "Our bid committee had all of our fingers crossed."

Smith was jubilant. "This is great news! Excellent choice. This is exciting for us. We thank the Class for having confidence in our abilities and determination to host a Nationals and set a higher bar. Thank you very much. Now, we roll up our sleeves."

2021 offers two regattas for Melges 24 racing on Pensacola Bay. Our revamped WFORC (multi-class, open, two-day regatta) will be held October 16-17, four weeks ahead of the 2021 Bushwhacker.

That regatta and this year's Pensacola YC Bushwhacker Cup [Nov 12-14] will be a great opportunity for teams to start practicing on Pensacola Bay. The Bushwhacker Cup is the final event of the 10-regatta USMCA National Ranking Series.

In 2022, the WFORC will move to the first weekend in November, just two weeks before the USM24CA Nationals. All competitors are welcome to leave their boats on site at the club between the two regattas. With sufficient sportboat entries for the WFORC, the event will have a separate circle and separate starts for qualifying classes.

"As you can see," Smith added, "we have been thinking about this already. Now we need to figure out how much Bushwhacker mix we need to order. We went through about 40 gallons at our last Bushwhacker Cup."

Race information for both the 2021 WFORC and the 2021 Bushwhacker Cup... NOR/SI's, regatta entry, team lists and official notices... is all on a Yacht Scoring Web Page.

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