Jabin and DeVos edge ahead

Three races held at the Melges 32 Gold Cup in Fort Lauderdale

Friday December 3rd 2010, Author: Joy Dunigan, Location: United States

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.



Pos Sail no Boat Skipper R1 R2 R3 Tot
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

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