Jabin and DeVos edge ahead
Day one of the 2010 Melges 32 Gold Cup Regatta, hosted by the Lauderdale Yacht Club delivered three incredible races. The result - defending Gold Cup Champion, Annapolis' Rod Jabin on Ramrod is seated in first overall, followed by Ryan DeVos on Volpe and Alex Jackson on Leenabarca. "We love Fort Lauderdale." said Jabin. "I think things are starting to come together - a little. Richard Clarke and Chris Larson bring a lot to the team. They make this easy for me."
Race one of the day produced a pleasant 6-8 knots of breeze, setting the stage for what was probably the most challenging heat of the day. An over-aggressive start for Kip Meadows on roXanne and Italian Lanfranco Cirillo on Fantastica resulted in OCS. Jackson's Leenabarca took advantage of the opening light and fickle conditions, launching ahead and leading the fleet to the first weathermark. As he approached, Jackson encountered stiff competition from reigning U.S. National Champion DeVos, Steve Howe on Warpath and Phil Lotz on Arethusa. Jackson rounded in first to hold a solid lead.
Downwind, he was out front and fast. Lotz challenged from the right, but as the breeze shifted he slipped to fourth allowing Joe Woods on Red to take over second place. Jason Carroll on Argo rounded third. A change of course was implemented at the gate bringing balance to the upwind beat for teams like Arethusa, Volpe, Warpath and Ramrod, all rounding respectively behind Jackson for the approach to the finish. Jackson was steadfast to win, Lotz was second and DeVos finished third.
The breeze began to build and the waves got a little larger for race two. Jeff Ecklund's STAR punched the starting line with speed putting him around the top mark in first, Howe and DeVos rounded closely in second and third. On the first downwind run, Jabin overtook Ecklund with DeVos holding firm. Back upwind, Meadows played the shifts just right, stealing the lead from Jabin now in second. The expertise of Jabin's tactician Chris Larson, combined with some red-hot boat speed served him well as he blasted across the finish line to win. DeVos managed to find some pressure on the right placing him ahead of Meadows to take second.
Howe's Warpath crushed the competition in race three. He rounded the top mark in first and never looked back. "We'll take it." commented Howe regarding the final race of the day. "I've sailed in Miami quite a bit, but this is the first time I've sailed here. I think we got lucky. This was so much fun and the Melges 32 is awesome. There was a little bit of everything today - shifty, puffy, choppy, you name the condition I think we saw it at some point." Howe won easily leaving Jabin, DeVos, Cirillo and Woods to battle for the remaining top five positions. Jabin edged DeVos for second. Cirillo was fourth and Woods finished fifth.
Saturday is Take A Junior Sailing Day. Each competing Melges 32 will be paired with an aspiring junior sailor. It's an exclusive, one-of-a-kind attribute of the Gold Cup Regatta, and the advantage and product of its inclusion is obvious. Two, previous participants of the Take A Junior Sailing program are bona fide Melges 32 crew members in 2010 — Kai Friesecke sails with Oscar Strugstad's Dawn Raider and Erika Reineke is aboard Ecklund's STAR.
|1||USA 206||Ramrod||Rodrick Jabin||4||1||2||7|
|2||USA 180||Volpe||Ryan DeVos||3||2||3||8|
|3||USA 174||Leenabarca||Alex Jackson||1||7||7||15|
|4||USA 32917||Warpath||Steve Howe||8||8||1||17|
|5||USA 211||Arethusa||Phil Lotz||2||4||11||17|
|6||GBR 700||Red||Joe Woods||6||11||5||22|
|7||USA 128||ARGO||Jason Carroll||10||10||6||26|
|8||USA 77||roXanne||Kip Meadows||16||3||9||28|
|9||USA 32||STAR||Jeff Ecklund||15||6||8||29|
|10||ITA 212||Fantastica||Lanfranco Cirillo||7||19||4||30|
|11||USA 1215||Delta||Dalton & Doug DeVos||11||9||12||32|
|12||USA 134||Catapult||Joel Ronning||5||15||13||33|
|13||USA 184||Bronco||Michael Dominguez||12||5||21||38|
|14||USA 178||Shakedown||Geoffrey Pierini||14||17||10||41|
|15||USA 157||Mojo||Steve Rhyne||9||18||16||43|
|16||USA 1315||Ninkasi||John Taylor||13||16||14||43|
|17||GBR 40||Dawn Raid||Oscar Strugstad||21||12||17||50|
|18||USA 153||Lake Effect||Bob Hesse||20||13||18||51|
|19||GBR 84845||Team Barbarians||Stuart Simpson||18||14||19||51|
|20||USA 208||Celeritas||Malcolm Gefter||19||21||15||55|
|21||USA 162||VIVA||Alexis Michas||17||20||20||57|