Kristen Lane Crowned Melges 24 Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week Champion
18 April 2011
17 April 2011 – It is clearly the year of the lady helm in the Melges fleets — congratulations to Kristen Lane, 2011 Melges 24 Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week Champion! Lane is quick to give credit to her confident team of tactician Charlie McKee, Willem Van Waay, Johnny Goldsberry and Matt Pistay. "It feels really good to have won. We've been sailing the Melges 24 now since 2007," said Lane after the awards ceremony. "I feel like every year, I've improved. I'm having a great time. The team is super fun. The competition in this fleet is as good as it has ever been. I think that the Corpus Christi World Championship is going to be amazing. I am very excited."
"I am looking forward to the conditions in Corpus Christi. I think we'll be sailing very fast, and having a lot of fun. Ultimately, I think that those conditions are exactly what this boat was designed for. It is just so much fun to sail this boat as fast as you can," Lane commented further. "I'm ready! Let's go."
"This is really great," said Peter Lane, Kristen's husband and owner/driver of Brickhouse 623. "She runs this whole program. She structures both of our teams, hires everyone, she puts the whole thing together. She shows people that anyone can do this. She is great. This is a long-time coming."
In second overall, is Bora Gulari on New England Ropes|West Marine Rigging who took a hard hit in the results. A thirteenth place finish in the one and only race of the day left him in second overall. Reigning Melges 24 U.S. National Champion Alan Field on WTF finished in third.
The last day of the Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week regatta was nothing short of spectacular. Sunny skies and fickle breezes presented the last opportunity for the race committee to squeeze in another race, adding a fifth to the four completed on Friday. All racing was cancelled on Saturday because of severe weather forecasts that included excessive winds and gusts, due to an incoming front.
The final race of the event got off to a late start, as the race committee dealt with shifting winds. The rapidly diminishing breeze didn't make things any easier. The Melges 24 fleet experienced an initial general recall with a Z-Flag penalty in effect. A host of boats felt the effects as they regrouped for a second start. Once underway the breeze died off completely. On the second upwind beat, the breeze went completely opposite of where it started causing the race committee to abandon.
The Race Committee worked hard to put one last race in the bag, by moving the fleet almost center of the harbor. Just past 1 o’clock in the afternoon, the fleet went racing as Charleston’s famous afternoon building sea breeze did its thing. A steady 8-10 knots pumped out of the Southeast filling in nicely. Field launched his WTF Melges 24 off the starting line taking a two-boat lead over Riccardo Simoneschi’sAudi. The two battled downwind, with Field very much holding his own for the win. Simoneschi finished second, Alec Cutler’s Hedgehog took third. Overnight leader, Lane held on for a satisfying fourth, while Peter Cucci with Flip Werheim at the helm finished fifth on Matador.
Thanks to the race organizers at Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week as the fleet appreciates all the fine southern hospitality and excellent race management, in particular, a very special thanks to Danny Havens and Randy Draftz.
TOP TEN RESULTS (Final, After Five Races)
1.) Kristen Lane, Brickhouse 812; 2-4-3-2-4 = 15
2.) Bora Gulari, New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging; 1-2-10-1-13 = 27
3.) Alan Field, WTF; 7-1-7-16-1 = 31
4.) Peter Cucci, Matador; 5-3-14-6-5 = 33
5.) Alec Cutler, Hedgehog; 14-13-1-9-3 = 39
6.) Steve Kopf, Blur; 12-5-11-7-6 = 41
7.) Riccardo Simoneschi, Audi; 11-10-9-17-2 = 48
8.) Martin Kullman, New Wave; 4-9-8-3-25 = 49
9.) Peter Lane, Brickhouse 623; 18-11-4-8-9 = 49
10.) David O'Reilly, Ardor|C.R.E.A.M; 23-8-6-11-11 = 59
View Full Results
Congratulations to Steve Suddath on Three-And-A-Half Men, as he is the Melges 24 Corinthian Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week Champion. In second overall is Augie Barkow on Windhover, and rounding out the top three, is Paul Hulsey on Hoodlum Racing.
TOP FIVE RESULTS (Final, After five races)
1.) Steve Suddath, Three-And-A-Half Men
2.) Augie Barkow, Windhover
3.) Paul Hulsey, Hoodlum Racing
4.) Henry Filter, Wild Child
5.) Adam Burns, Presto
View The Charleston Race Week Corinthian Entry List
Official Event Website
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TEAMS LINE UP FOR WORLDS — ENTRY DEADLINE, APRIL 22
The Melges 24 Road To Corpus series, of which Charleston Race Week is the penultimate event, culminates in the 2011 Melges 24 World Championship in Corpus Christi, Tx., from 11-21 May 2011. With teams from ten nations across North America, Europe and Australasia already entered, the competition is expected to be fierce. Entries for the regatta close officially on 22 April 2011. For further information, including the Notice of Race and Online Registration, please visit the Official Event Website.