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Freides Crowned 2016/17 Miami Winter Series Champion, Wilber Wins Melges Rocks Regatta

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Miami Winter Series 2016-2017
Miami Winter Series 2016-2017

Champagne Jam - Freides Crowned 2016/17 Miami Winter Series Champion, Wilber Wins Melges Rocks Regatta



MIAMI, Fla. (Mar. 5, 2017) - It was not the call that anyone wanted, but a decision that had to be made. A bold forecast that detailed a sustained breeze of 25+ knots with gusts into the mid-thirties gave PRO Blake Middleton no other choice but to call off all scheduled racing on Sunday for the final stage of the 2016/17 Melges 20 Miami Winter Series, hosted by Coconut Grove Sailing Club (GCSC). Awards were held just after noon at Miami Shake-A-Leg.

A big round of congratulations are in order for Melges Rocks Regatta winner Rob Wilber on Cinghiale along with Sam Rogers and Matt Woodworth as crew. This win marks the first ever Melges 20 Class victory for Wilber. Canada's Rhonda Joyce on Grinning Streak conquered the all-amatuer division for the first time. Aboard her Melges 20 were crewmates Jeremy Edwards and Anthony Bowman.

"When I saw white caps in the swimming pool this morning I thought this doesn't bode well for sailing," said Joyce. "When driving in breezy conditions I really have to focus... the boat kind of tells you what to do and I get most of my feedback from the boat itself, and then the guys are all dialed in for trimming. The waves definitely make it more fun and challenging."

In the overall mega-Miami victory circle is Drew Freides with Morgan Reeser, Charlie Smythe and Federico Michetti on board Pacific Yankee, and John Brown on Blind Squirrel with George Demand and Kyle Rogachenko. Each of these super Melges 20 teams took home Series trophies awarding them the title of overall and Corinthian 2016/17 Miami Winter Series Champions respectively.

Igor Rytov's Russian Bogatyrs proudly accepted the second place trophy for the season, while Jim Wilson's Oleander finished third.

Liam Kilroy on Wildman was named Top Youth, Joyce was named top female helm and Paul Reilly on Red Sky Sailing Team was named top Master in the Melges 20 Class for the 2016/17 Miami season.


A very special thanks to every team that traveled near and far to participate in this year's Miami Winter Series. YOU are what make these events extraordinary and they would be nothing without you! As always, an incredible round of thanks and appreciation for PRO Blake Middleton, CGSC Race Committee Members and the host of volunteers who have made this Series extra special and enjoyable!


The Winter racing season officially wound down also in Monaco this weekend with Manfredi Vianini Tolomei at the helm of Maolca winning the Montemaggio Cup and Alexander Ezhkov on Pirogovo Sailing winning the overall 2016/17 Dynamiq Yachts Monaco Winter Series. And now, the Melges 20 European Fleet turns up the heat in high anticipation of the first 2017 event in Porto Venere, Italy on April 7-9. Catch all the action online at, and stay close on all Melges 20 Class social media channels. View Full Melges 20 2017 Events Schedule.

TOP FIVE RESULTS (FINAL - After Three Races)

1.) Rob Wilber, Cinghiale; 1-7-1 = 9

2.) John Kilroy, Jr., Samba Pa Ti; 7-5-3 = 15

3.) Drew Freides, Pacific Yankee; 8-1-7 = 16

4.) Igor Rytov, Russian Bogatyrs; 3-13-2 = 18

5.) Liam Kilroy, Wildman; 2-8-8 = 18

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1.) Drew Freides, Pacific Yankee = 6 pts.

2.) Igor Rytov, Russian Bogatyrs = 13 pts.

3.) Jim Wilson, Oleander = 16 pts.

4.) Rob Wilber, Cinghiale = 18 pts.

5.) Paul Reilly, Red Sky Sailing Team = 19 pts.

2016/17 Miami Winter Series Ranking (Overall & Corinthian - Final After Three Events)

2016/17 Dynamiq Yachts Monaco Winter Series (Overall - After Five Events)

2017 Melges 20 World League Results (After One Event)

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