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Thread: Melges 32's Plow Into Opti Fleet

  1. #11
    Those f-in kids should stay out of the f-in way!

    (unidentified M-32 driver)

  2. #12
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
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    Lake Garda Near Miss






    The incident over the weekend where a fleet of opti sailors get interrupted by some wayward Melges 32 sailors, has gotten a lot of attention. The offending M -32 claim that the PRO's working the optis were at fault for putting there course so close to the M-32 course. Here's a statement post recently in that vein:


    “The most exciting part of the day today though was again having to sail through the optis and seeing those kids faces. At one point I think we almost took out a few of the little tykes when we had to sail past their gybe mark. It was ultra sketchy and although I am sure they dug it, their parents were probably pissed. I mean we are a 32 foot boat sailing at 19 knots through their course. Dangerous indeed, but its not our fault that the PRO’s set up the courses so close to each other and started at basically the same times which all but guaranteed some conflict. The part of sailing here is that there is usually a lot going on, kiters, windsurfers, 49’ers, etc. It’s just part of the deal.”

    Photos courtesy Norman Sailing, LLC
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  3. #13
    J/92 Ragtime!
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    Can you imagine a gaggle of Opti's or El Toros in front of the SFYC or RYC and some clowns plowing through them like that? While these photos don't show it, the line of Opti's were even on starboard.

    This is outrageous. I hope there are severe consequences for those M32 skippers.

  4. #14
    Headed Offshore
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    I thought the current AC fiasco was the worst thing that could happen on SF Bay, but maybe a Melges 32 championship might be worse? The arrogance, multiplied by the description of the "most exciting part of the day" comment, is beyond belief. It's luck more than skill that an Opti "little tyke" wasn't injured or killed.

  5. #15
    Way to point the finger at someone else, Mister Melges 32 skipper. Yup, it's all the RC's fault.

    NO. You chose to sail smack dab right through a fleet of kids. You could have gone around them....dear God, but you'd have had to sail an extra 200 feet, and how totally unacceptable is that?/// blecch. Hmph. . YOU are responsible for your actions. If you didn't like the course, the sail it safely and protest the RC, but don't drive your fucking boat right through a fleet of kids in opti's.

    Asshat.

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Photoboy View Post





    The incident over the weekend where a fleet of opti sailors get interrupted by some wayward Melges 32 sailors, has gotten a lot of attention. The offending M -32 claim that the PRO's working the optis were at fault for putting there course so close to the M-32 course. Here's a statement post recently in that vein:


    “The most exciting part of the day today though was again having to sail through the optis and seeing those kids faces. At one point I think we almost took out a few of the little tykes when we had to sail past their gybe mark. It was ultra sketchy and although I am sure they dug it, their parents were probably pissed. I mean we are a 32 foot boat sailing at 19 knots through their course. Dangerous indeed, but its not our fault that the PRO’s set up the courses so close to each other and started at basically the same times which all but guaranteed some conflict. The part of sailing here is that there is usually a lot going on, kiters, windsurfers, 49’ers, etc. It’s just part of the deal.”

    Photos courtesy Norman Sailing, LLC
    I was returning to the RYC with my ail between my legs one afternoon in the winter series as a shitload of Optis were heading out. The wind was out of the south (towards the club/dock) and my Finn just lit up. All I could think about was "oh f-k me, this is going to suck", so I spun out and crashed into Chamberlin's dock, then capsized. No kiddies were hurt.

  7. #17
    Have seen local fishing boats do similar things on way back from day on the water.

  8. #18
    Agreed it was a poor choice to charge through but the Opti PRO seems to be getting a pass for creating a bad situation here. They basically blocked off the lake by reaching the optis across the width of the lake. A couple mins later and those kids would have been super spread out on the run section. What then?
    Pointing like a traffic cop, footin like a track star.

  9. #19
    Are there charts available that support that?

  10. #20
    despondent correspondent Photoboy's Avatar
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    Response From Melges 32 Class Association

    Dear IODA,

    Thank you for your note expressing your deep concern over the incident on Lake Garda this past weekend. Rest assure that the International Melges 32 Class Association (IM32CA) was equally upset by the video footage of the two Melges 32s racing through the Opti fleet on Saturday afternoon.

    Needless to say, this footage has prompted us to proactively investigate further the actions of many including, but not limited to the Yacht Clubs (Circolo Vela Torbole and Fraglia Vela Riva), both event PROs, the members of the International Jury as well as all Melges 32 teams present.

    Our findings thus far have revealed unfortunate circumstances in which were truly beyond our control. For example, despite our numerous complaints that specifically addressed safety if the race courses overlapped was completely ignored on multiple occasions. Additional concerns were also voiced by many of our owners as well as sponsor representatives, and they too were disregarded as unimportant.

    Looking to the incident, the two teams highlighted in the video chose to navigate, what we now know was a dangerous path to the leeward gate. This combined with what we perceive as poor decision making in regards to where races were ran was where we have found the problem to be.

    We realize that a higher level of situational awareness and a more conservative approach should have been exercised by several of the Melges 32 teams, honoring and giving right of way considering the breezy conditions. Do know that many of the competing teams did just that.

    Since the incident, please know that both teams featured in the video have already, very sincerely issued public apologies regarding their actions on Facebook and through other media sources. We believe this is a step in the right direction on their part. The IM32CA is also reviewing internally what other measures may be taken to further correct the situation and prevent it from ever happening again.

    We will be publishing their apologies along with this letter online at melges32.com.

    You also mentioned that there were Melges 32s owners or crew that possibly spoke in disrespect to some of the young Opti sailors. Please know through our process to get to the bottom of just what exactly happened, we have not heard

    anything regarding this at all. Considering the caliber and league of sailor commonly found on a Melges 32, such behavior is highly unacceptable.

    As we move forward, we hope that we can work with you collectively in resolving this matter peacefully and respectfully. All of our owners are regular contributors to youth foundations and sailing programs, and we know how important it is to emphasize the value of youth sailing and support the future of our sport. This is something that we hold with the highest regard.

    We agree that best next step for our classʼ is to file a joint report to ISAF in accordance with rule 69.3 to see if any Melges 32 team breached rule 69.1(a) and that under The Racing Rules of Sailing, ISAF has the ability and the authority to review this matter properly.

    Kind regards,

    Hank Stuart, President
    International Melges 32 Class Association (IM32CA)

    Andy Burdick
    Melges Performance Sailboats
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