Melges Wins U.S. National Championship Title In Macatawa Bay

Melges Wins U.S. National Championship Title In Macatawa Bay

Courtesy –

31 May 2015

Macatawa Bay, MI — Congratulations to Harry Melges IV and team mate Vincent Porter on White Heat as they are the 2015 Melges 17 U.S. National Champions. With only four races completed — two on Friday and, an additional two on Saturday amidst some rain, fog and light breezes, Melges IV came from behind to take the top overall position putting him 3 points ahead of Sean Fidler on Ludicrous Speed. Early event leader Rob Terry on Thrillseeker was third on count back.

The story of the day on Saturday was Melges’ younger sibling, his sister and defending Melges 17 U.S. National Champion Monroe (sailing with her father Harry Melges III) on Teal. Her double bullet day took her from fourteenth to fourth overall. 

R.J. Porter on Full Throttle had a great Race Three to follow Monroe across the finish line for second, just ahead of Fidler.

Race Four in particular was fantastic as it featured an all-star, top-three-youth sailor finish — Monroe Melges, Harry Melges IV and Kyle Navin on 5-Star finishing first, second and third respectively.

Unfortunately no racing took place on Sunday, so Saturday’s results stand as final. 

TOP TEN RESULTS (FINAL – After Four Races)
1.) Harry Melges IV, White Heat; 6-1-4-2 = 13
2.) Sean Fidler, Ludicrous Speed; 1-6-3-6 = 16
3.) Rob Terry, Thrillseeker; 3-2-7-4 = 16
4.) Monroe Melges, Teal; 9-13-1-1 = 24
5.) Tom Munroe, USA-11; 2-5-9-9 = 25
6.) Kyle Navin, 5-Star; 14-4-6-3 = 27
7.) Pablo Gallyas, Gallyas Marine; 7-11-8-8 = 34
8.) Chad Coberly, USA-3; 5-8-11-14 = 38
9.) Casey Call, USA-71; 8-7-12-12 = 39
10.) R.J. Porter, Full Throttle; 11-14-2-13 = 40

Vincent Porter – Edmund Pillsbury Memorial Cup

Vincent Porter – Edmund Pillsbury Memorial Cup

Vincent Porter Pillsbury 2015Congratulations to Vincent Porter, pictured here accepting the 2014 Edmund Pillsbury Memorial Cup from Inland Lake Yachting Association Commodore Peter A. Friend at the March ILYA Board Meeting. The Cup, established in 1952 by Mr. and Mrs. John S. Pillsbury and their family, recognizes the outstanding skipper at each summer’s Inland Lake Sailing Association Annual Regatta. In 2014 last August at Oshkosh, Vincent Porter was certainly outstanding as he took first overall in two classes: in Class A, sailing Ryan Fitzgerald’s Eagle; and in Class E, in a down-to-the-wire win in his Wide Open, to tie in points with his uncle Brian Porter, runnerup in Full Throttle. Vincent also won the Pillsbury Cup in 2012 (Class E), and he shared the award in 1998 (Class X) with his father John (Class A) and Brian (Class E).

Lake Geneva skippers received the first three Pillsbury Cups (1952, 1953, 1954), and Vincent’s 2014 selection marks the 18th time LGYC skippers have been so honored by the ILYA.

LGYC recipients: 1952, William H. Freytag Jr., Class C; 1953, Jane Wiswell, Class C; 1954, Jim Lund, Class D; 1956, Buddy Melges, Class E; 1957, Harry Melges Sr., Class A; 1965, Buddy Melges, Class E; 1974, Henry Bossett, Class M; 1984, John Porter, Class A; 1985, Harry Melges III, Classes E and C; 1986, Harry Melges III, Class E; 1988, Harry Melges III, Classes E and C; 1990, Jane Pegel, Class M; 1991, Brian Porter, Class E; 1996, Iggy Labanauskas, Classes IOD and X; 1998, John, Brian, Vincent Porter, Classes A, E, X; 2010, Buddy Melges, Class A; 2012, Vincent Porter, Class E; 2014, Vincent Porter, Classes A and E.

Chapman Petersen Enjoyed His Time In Spain


Photo – Team USA Palamos

Chapman Petersen had a good time in Spain. A member of Opti Class Team USA, selected in January at Southern YC, he competed in the XXVI International Vila de Palamos Optimist Trophy 10th Nations Cup Regatta, February 12-15, at the Club de Vela Palamos on Spain’s Costa Brava. 

The event attracted 544 boats (a Palamos record) from 22 countries and is the biggest youth sailing event in Spain. Chapman, who is 11, finished in 170th place. It was his first look at the Mediterranean and his first international event. And it gave him a chance to use his Spanish, which he is studying in school.

Overall winner was Germany’s Deike Bornemann, 14, from Seglerverein Weener e.V. (she finished fourth at last year’s event), followed by Spain’s Jaime Benthem Muniz and Great Britain’s Julia Mellers from Colchester YC.

Winds were a big mix, ranging from very light to what in Spain is called a Garbi–about Beaufort scale Force 5 and much loved by the Windsurfer crowd. Class C sailor Jim Petersen, who accompanied his son to Palamos, estimated that swells in one race were about four to five feet. Team USA coaches were Robby Bisi and Marek Valasek.
The sailors raced in flights and were scored individually, not in age groups. Chapman’s flight had 135 boats in it, and his best finish was in the finale, a 14th place in light conditions.
“I liked getting my best race last,” Chapman said, “a 14th when I passed ten boats in the last beat.” He was not sailing his own boat in this regatta, but he did use his own sail, boom, mainsheet, and tiller extension.

Jim Petersen found the regatta interesting though it was difficult when he was on the water to spot Chapman’s USA 17358 sail in such a massive fleet. He said that the beach-launching aspect of the property allowed the sailors to get their boats in the water almost simultaneously—no crowded ramps—“but did provide a workout to pull the dollies through the sand a pretty considerable distance.”

The sailors enjoyed the social side of the regatta, and parties for the participants were held mainly under a tent. “I had fun playing beach soccer with kids from Switzerland and Germany and found many new friends,” said Chapman. “It was fun to exchange gear and mementos with kids from other countries at the end of the regatta.”

On the home front in both 2013 and 2014, Chapman won LGYC’s Robert J. Porter Memorial Trophy for the Optimist Series A title and the Optimist Series B Championship. He also received the Michael H. Sherin Trophy as Optimist Skipper of the Year at the Geneva Lake Sailing School. In 2015, he plans to compete in Miami in the Opti Spring Fling Regatta and the US National Team Trials.

To see the complete results of the Palamos Regatta and photos of hundreds of boats on the beach and rounding marks (to cool background music like Fifteen Minutes of Fame), click here.

Photo - Team USA Palamos

Photo – Team USA Palamos

Bob Pegel named Race Officer Emeritus

Bob Pegel named Race Officer Emeritus

bobpegelflagshipOn February 14, 2015, in a unanimous decision, the Lake Geneva Yacht Club Board of Directors named Robert E. Pegel Race Officer Emeritus. The event marks Bob’s retirement from decades of committee work at the Yacht Club and the Geneva Lake Sailing School.

 “Bob’s contributions in a number of different capacities over the years have been invaluable to our club and to the sport of sailing.  We are particularly fortunate for his dedication and expertise in race management, both at our club and at a national level.  It is an honor to present him with this title,” said LGYC Commodore F. Terrence Blanchard, who presented the Pegels with a copy of the Board Resolution, which listed many of Bob’s contributions during his 60 years of membership.

 This is the first time that the Lake Geneva Yacht Club has awarded this title.

For a copy of the Board Resolution, Click Robert Pegel – Board Resolution

Chapman Petersen to Compete in Spain

Chapman Petersen to Compete in Spain

Congratulations to Chapman Petersen, 11, who is one of 15 sailors selected as Team USA to compete at the XXVI International Vila de Palamos Optimist Trophy 10th Nations Cup Regatta, February 12-15, in Palamos, Catalonia, Spain. This is Chapman’s first international regatta.

The event is organized by the Club de Vela Palamos, Club Nautic Costa Brava, Real Federacion Espanola de Vela, and Federacio Catalana de Vela. Last year it attracted 377 Opti sailors. As of mid-January 2015 the registration had passed the 480 mark and included boats from 18 countries. The regatta venue is at Palamos Beach near the Club de Vela Palamos on the Costa Brava.

The US Optimist Dinghy Association announced the names of the Team USA sailors after they had qualified at the Opti Midwinter Championship at Southern Yacht Club in New Orleans. The team will be accompanied by two coaches.

Chapman Petersen had an outstanding 2014 season on Geneva Lake.  He won the Opti Series A Championship for the Robert J. Porter Memorial Trophy, the Opti Series B Championship, the Aunty Jo Perpetual Trophy, and the Mike and Mark Childers Trophy as crew for Harry Melges IV, winner of the Class X Series A Championship. At the Geneva Lake Sailing School, the director and coaches named Chapman Optimist Skipper of the Year and awarded him the Michael H. Sherin Trophy for the second year in a row.

Palamos Regatta website:

Buena suerte, Chapman!


Brian Porter Wins Tie Breaker To Take Melges 24 Nationals

Brian Porter Wins Tie Breaker To Take Melges 24 Nationals

Brian Porter secured the Melges 24 National Championship by winning the 7th race and didn’t need to start the 8th and final race.  An eighth place finish in race 7 by Bora Gulari guaranteed a victory for Porter.  Porter was joined by Andy Burdick, Sam Rogers and Matt Woodworth.  To read the full story, CLICK HERE.

Brian Porter wasn’t the only LGYC member to take the trip to the Sunshine State.  Also competing at Davis Island Yacht Club were Steve Boho and Frank Davenport, finishing 9th and 27th respectively.

For some great photos from Joy Dunigan, CLICK HERE