Freides Crowned Melges 20 U.S. National Champ
Sunday, August 20, 2017 7:57 AM
Newport, R.I. August 19, 2017 - A massive round of congratulations is in order for newly crowned Drew Freides on Pacific Yankee. He and his team which includes Morgan Reeser and Charlie Smythe are the 2017 Melges 20 U.S. National Champions.
It took eight challenging races over the course of three days and Freides' extremely consistent performances to ultimately win the event by one point, ahead of John Kilroy's Samba Pa Ti finishing second. Jason Michas' Midnight Blue came third, Liam Kilroy's Wildman was fourth and Jim Wilson's Oleander rounded out the final top five standings.
As Friday's rain gave way to a hot sun and blue skies, the wind went with it and Saturday morning looked like the perfect day for water skiing instead of sailboat racing. After a brief delay, Pro Anderson Reggio sent the fleet to the outside ocean race course to take advantage of a slowly filling seabreeze. As teams made their way past infamous Castle Hill, they were greeted with 6-7 ft swell, confused seas and no wind, leaving a portion of the fleet questioning the decision to enjoy Thames Street the night prior.
After a brief postponement to let the breeze continue to build and settle, Race Seven got underway with 6-7 kts out of the Southwest. Making no mistake about his intentions to seal the win, Freides started at the boat, tacked, legged it out into the right corner and took advantage of a nice starboard tack angle and pressure. The only boat besting Freides was Wilson who nailed the first beat on the right side, leading wire-to-wire for the win. Freides followed in second, and Daniel Thielman on Kuai was third. Kilroy had a tough time getting back from the left side of the course, but fought hard to grab eighth. The spread in points gave Freides the overall win with a race to spare.
In the final race of the day, Kilroy showed that his first race on Saturday was a fluke and took his fourth bullet of the series, cementing a second place finish overall. Capping off a stellar day, Wilson grabbed second, moving him up to finish the event fifth overall. Liam Kilroy sailed consistent to finish fourth. A very fast and well sailed team on Midnight Blue capped off the event with a final day 4-5 scoreline to secure third overall.
A Very special thanks
As always, thanks to all the teams who participated - without you this event would not have been possible. A round to appreciation goes out the PRO Anderson Reggio and his Sail Newport Race Committee, most notably Emily Greagori and Vinnie Pattavina for a very professionally executed and managed event. Special thanks to goods provided by Farmer Willies Ginger Beer and BoatBrim.
Eyes will shift back to Europe one last time before the World Championship hosted by the New York Yacht Club for the Russian Open on September 1-3, the fifth and final event of the 2017 Melges 20 World League. Beyond the Worlds, two final events in Japan will take place, and the 2017-18 Miami Winter Series cranks up again in December.
Media and Racing coverage
As with other Melges 20 events around the world, racing updates will be posted online at the Official Melges 20 Facebook Page. Be sure to also follow the fleet on Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Tune in for the latest racing information, results, video interviews and photos at melges20.com.
TOP FIVE RESULTS (FINAL - After Eight Races, One Discard)
1.) Drew Freides, PACIFIC YANKEE; -1-3-2-2-1-2-4 = 15
2.) John Kilroy, SAMBA PA TI; 5-2-1-1-1-5--1 = 16
3.) Jason Michas, MIDNIGHT BLUE; 3-5-4--3-3-4-5 = 27
4.) Liam Kilroy, WILDMAN; 2-8-2-3-6-2--6 = 29
5.) Jim Wilson, OLEANDER; 6-9-6-5-[19/DNF]-10-1-2 = 39
View Full 2017 Melges 20 U.S National Championship Results
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TOP FIVE 2017 MELGES WORLD LEAGUE RESULTS (After Ten Events)
1.) Igor Rytov, RUSSIAN BOGATYRS = 116 pts.
2.) Vladimir Prosikhin, NIKA = 72 pts.
3.) Achille Onorato, MASCALZONE LATINO = 64 pts.
4.) Krzysztof Krempec, MAG TINY = 62 pts.
5.) Rodney Jones, AUDI SUNSHINE COAST; 58 pts.
TOP FIVE 2017 MELGES WORLD LEAGUE, NORTH AMERICA RESULTS (After Three Events)
1.) Drew Freides, PACIFIC YANKEE = 57 pts.
2.) Liam Kilroy, WILDMAN = 49 pts.
3.) Rob Wilber, CINGHIALE = 46 pts.
4.) Igor Rytov, RUSSIAN BOGATYRS = 46 pts.
5.) Daniel Thielman, KUAI = 44 pts.
2017 Melges 20 World League Results (After Ten Events)