Melges 24 National Championship

Brian Porter's Full Throttle edges out Bora Gulari's New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging to win their sixth national title. Photos courtesy of Joy Dunigan/USMCA

A 31-boat fleet of Melges 24s met at the Davis Island YC in Tampa, Fla., Nov. 14-16, 2014 for their national championship.

In the open class, Bora Gulari's New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging went into the final day of racing on Sunday tied with Brian Porter's Full Throttle. In the first race of the day, Porter was able to roll over Gulari after the start, forcing Gulari to the unfavored right side of the course. Porter controlled the race from there and went on to win the championship title with a race to spare. In the Corinthian division (amateur), Kevin Nixon's Accru+, posted a 17th place finish in the penultimate race. Ryan Glaze's Gringo had an opportunity to steal the lead away in the final race, but Nixon and his crew were able to hold on to win.

Brian Porter's Full Throttle edged out Bora Gulari's New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging to win the Melges 24 National Championship for the sixth time.
Bora Gulari took a break from training with America's Cup challenger Luna Rossa to compete in the Melges 24 National Championship.
Ryan Glaze’s Gringo, from Rush Creek YC in Rockwall, Tex., finished second in the Corinthian class.
The University of Vermont sailing team sent a contingent to the regatta to sail in the Corinthian class, finishing 28th overall.
Brian Porter's Full Throttle was able to grab the overall lead on a tiebreaker with Bora Gulari's New England Ropes/West Marine Rigging, both finishing just 3 points ahead of Marty Kullman's New Wave (bow No. 15).
The sole Australian entry in the regatta, Kevin Nixon and his crew aboard Accru+ made the competition a family affair. Nixon explains, "This is our first time racing in Davis Island and we made it a family holiday to come race Melges 24s in America. We are sailing with all family, my wife Glenda, daughter Bonnie, my son Daniel and his girlfriend Christine."
Porter and his team, Andy Burdick, Sam Rogers, and Matt Woodworth, round the leeward mark during one of the regatta's light-air races.
Despite varied wind conditions throughout the regatta, the competitors were positive and enthusiastic. With Quantum Key West in January and the 2015 Melges Rocks Regatta in March, as well as the 2016 World Championship in South Florida (location TBD), the fleet is expecting a resurgence in participation.