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RYA Dinghy & Watersports Show 2023 - LEADERBOARD

Melges 24 U.S. National Championship takes center stage in Pensacola

by U.S. Melges 24 Class Association 31 Oct 2022 14:37 GMT November 10-13, 2022
Tom Ritter's Tramp will be among several teams competing for the 2022 Melges 24 Corinthian U.S. National Championship title © Matias Capizzano

Thirty-five Melges 24s are currently registered for the forthcoming U.S. National Championship happening November 10-13 hosted by the Pensacola Yacht Club (PYC) in Pensacola, FL.

Historically, PYC offers a really fun, laid-back regatta program — best known for the Bushwhacker Cup famous for its free-flowing name-sake cocktails. For 2022, the U.S. Melges 24 Class has selected PYC to take it up a notch and serve as host for its marquee event of the year. It is also the final event of the 2022 U.S. National Ranking Series.

"The PYC Race Committee and staff are eagerly anticipating the arrival of the best sailors in the country/world and their Melges 24s," says PRO Hal Smith. "Preparations are being made for some really great southern hospitality. The Bushwhacker machine is being warmed up for extra duty and don't be surprised if we catch a glimpse of American Magic foiling nearby at 50+ knots!"

Smith states that the weather this time of year has been excellent for top-notch competition and expects ample wind each day with a nice range in conditions.

On the competitive side of things, USM24CA Southeast District Governor Tony Stanley and skipper of Hermes is quite pleased with the turnout and hopes for just a few more fence-sitters to join in on the fun: "We like to see teams travel to the National Championship and we definitely have that going on this year. We have top level representation from the Great Lakes region, Lake Lanier in Georgia, Louisiana and New York, but also internationally from Canada and Germany. Everyone is getting pumped!"

The 2022 National Championship is also the last stop on the National Ranking Series of events. On top of the heap of 77 competing teams, Travis Weisleder's Lucky Dog leads the Series, just 5 points ahead of Canada's Richard Reid on Zingara. 2022 World Champion Peter Duncan on Raza Mixta is currently third, followed by Bora Gulari on New England Ropes in fourth, then Harry Melges' Zenda Express is fifth.

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