The overall and Corinthian winner of the Melges 24 European Sailing Series 2023 - Akos Csolto's Chinook (HUN) - Riva del Garda, Italy, July 2023 2023 © IM24CA / Zerogradinord

The overall and Corinthian winner of the Melges 24 European Sailing Series 2023 - Akos Csolto's Chinook (HUN) - Riva del Garda, Italy, July 2023 2023 © IM24CA / Zerogradinord

Melges 24 Class confirms the Melges 24 European Sailing Series

Sport

12/04/2024 - 15:50

 In one week, the 12th season of the Melges 24 European Sailing Series will kick off in Trieste, Italy. Established in 2013 by the International Melges 24 Class Association, the series aims to identify the top performers in the class and comprises a title championship and various regattas across Europe. The aim is to bring top-level regattas closer to the owners, expanding events as much as possible. This year, the International Melges 24 Class Association management is announcing a novelty: the Melges 24 European Ranking.

If the Melges 24 European Sailing Series results emphasize high-level racing, taking into account the four best results obtained on the ten events on the calendar and rewarding the teams that participate in the main events, then the European Ranking aims to unite as many Melges 24 boats, teams, and sailors as possible in one ranking that includes events with weightings assigned to each regatta, sailed across Europe. The ranking will be drawn up based on the six best event results, regardless of the total events participated in. 

In summary, while both rankings assess performance in Melges 24 competitions, the Melges 24 European Sailing Series focuses more on a select number of prestigious events. In contrast, the Melges 24 European Ranking aims for inclusivity and broad participation across various events and countries. It will be online and updated periodically with press releases up to four times yearly. 

Michael Tarabochia, a long-term member of the International Melges 24 Class Association Executive Committee, comments: “Revamping the Melges 24 European Sailing Series in 2023 focused more on geographical accessibility proved the right path. The concept of bringing the regattas closer to the sailors and expanding events in Northern and Southern Europe took shape, ensuring broader participation from owners and their teams. After the 2023 season, we were committed to refining and enhancing the rankings, presenting in addition the European Ranking, aiming to unite as many Melges 24 boats, teams, and sailors as possible in one ranking.”

Looking at the calendar, it should be underlined that the start of the season is imminent: as early as next week (April 19th-21st), at Yacht Club Adriaco in Trieste, the fleet will reunite for what will be the first seasonal event followed just three weeks later in May by the second appointment, scheduled in Portoroz, Slovenia and organized by the Yacht Club Portoroz, a long-time friend and host of the International Melges 24 fleet, where the class will celebrate the winners of the 2023 season during an eagerly awaited award ceremony. 

The Melges 24 European Sailing Series will resume after Portoroz with the Danish Nationals in Skive (24-26/5) and continue on Attersee, Austria (31/5-2/6). The following events will take place in Hanko (NOR), Riva del Garda (ITA), Tønsberg (NOR), near Copenhagen (DEN), and Split (CRO), where the International Melges 24 Class Association will sail for the European Championship (27/9-4/10). 

These events are not just about competition but about bringing together the best Melges 24 boats, teams, and sailors from across Europe.

The Melges 24 European Sailing Series is set to witness the participation of some of the top European teams, including last season's overall and Corinthian winner, Akos Csolto’s Chinook (HUN), the runner-up Luka Sangulin’s Panjic (CRO) and Ante Botica’s Mataran 24 (COR), and other renowned crews such as Michael Tarabochia’s White Room (GER), Paolo Brescia’s Melgina (ITA), Miles Quinton’s Zhik Race Team (GBR), Peter Karrie's Nefeli (GER), Michele Paoletti’s Strambapapà (ITA), Borre Hekk Paulsen's Helly Hansen Lisa 2 (NOR) and Tõnu Tõniste's Lenny (EST), if to name only a few.

Akos Csolto, the owner and helmsman of Chinook (HUN), the current champion of the Melges 24 European Sailing Series, when talking about the upcoming season, said that in January, they finalized their season calendar with a focus on the races closer to them. “Following Trieste and Portoroz in the spring, we are setting our sights on Attersee, then Riva, and aim to be in top form for the races in Split. The season brings an interesting and exciting twist with removing the weight limit from the Class Rules, a change we’re approaching with strategic consideration, and we are eager to witness how it will reshape the competitive landscape.

Our team’s core remains unchanged, and our team members have sailed together for many years. We’re excited to celebrate our team's 10th anniversary next year.

And, of course, our primary goal is Split and the European Championship this year. The location holds a special significance for us, especially for our tactician, Balazs Tomai, who spent many years there as a Laser sailor. We hope these fond memories will give us an extra edge…”

 

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