Vincenzo Onorato claims European title
Fourth place in a nail biting final race with at least four boats in with a chance of winning the European title, was enough for Vincenzo Onorato's Mascalzone Latino, with Australia's Nathan Wilmot calling tactics, to clench victory. A further two Italian boats, Lanfranco Cirillo's Fantastica, with Michele Paoletti on tactics, and Torpyone, helmed by Edoardo Lupi with tactician Branko Brcin, took second and third place respectively among the competing boats eligible for the Europeans. The event, organised by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda in collaboration with B-Plan Sport&Events and Melges Europe, is the third event in the Audi Sailing Series for the Melges 32.
Overall American Jason Carroll on Argo won the event, leading by 53 points, however as the Melges 32 class rules only permit the European Challenge Cup to be awarded to a European boat, so Carroll has to be content with taking the top prize for the third event in the Audi Sailing Series ahead of Onorato and Cirillo.
The 22 competing boats had an anxious wait from early morning right up until the final time limit of 14.25 before a starting signal sounded. After a general recall the fleet was off on their tenth and final windward-leeward of the series in light sirocco breezes. Carroll, with Cameron Appleton calling tactics, chose the left and took the lead on the first beat ahead of Naofumi Kamei's Mamma Aiuto!, while Onorato and Leonid Lebedev's Synergy with Tommaso Chieffi as tactician, battled for third with the Russian boat prevailing and pushing the Italians into fourth.
Vincenzo Onorato, owner of Mascalzone Latino was pleased to be back on winning form in Porto Cervo: "I don't think we have won in what I consider to be my home waters since the Sardinia Cup of 2005, so this victory at the Europeans here is particularly significant for us. We are also leading in the circuit after three legs so we're happy. The Americans sailed really well and deserved their win in this leg."
Jason Carroll, owner of Argo added: "I want to thank everyone, the owners and crews and the organization, for making this an excellent week of racing and I can't wait to see everyone back on the water again soon."
Full results here