Photos by Joy

Three bullets for Warpath

On the opening day of the Melges 32's Gold Cup Regatta in Fort Lauderdale

Friday December 2nd 2011, Author: Joy Dunigan, Location: United States

Three races were completed on opening day of the 2011 Gold Cup Regatta, hosted by the Lauderdale Yacht Club. Steve Howe on Warpath, along with tactician Morgan Larson handed the fleet some super speed on a silver platter, taking an immediate lead with an impressive 1-1-1 score line. In second place is reigning Melges 32 North American Champion Ryan DeVos on Volpe with Ed Baird on tactics. Rounding out the top three is John Kilroy’s Samba Pa Ti with Lorenzo Bressani serving as tactician in third overall.

Beautiful conditions prevailed all day. It was breeze on from start to finish as the race committee delivered three short and sweet heats — 060 (sometimes bouncing between 065 and 070) at 1.1 nm.

Howe was speed right out of the box winning all three races. But, that’s not to say he and his team didn’t have to work hard to win, whereas in many instances, they had to work even harder to stay ahead of the Gold Cup’s 18-strong fleet.

The first race of the day provided overcast skies, breeze and lots of big seas. Benjamin’s Schwartz’s Pisces came on strong taking an early lead in race one. He struggled up the second upwind leg, then let it all slip away to Howe’s Warpath. Howe continued on to win with Schwartz and tactician Johnny Lovell still taking home a nice second place finish, and DeVos’ Volpe was third.

Races two and three ushered in more of the same great breeze and building seas, only this time, the dispersing clouds made way for plenty of sunshine. A steady 15-18 knots with slightly higher gusts, brought Joel Ronning’s Catapult to the front of the fleet taking a short-lived lead in race two, followed by Dalton DeVos on Delta and Howe in third. Downwind Howe blistered the right side of the course taking over the lead position, followed by DeVos’ Volpe moving up to round through the gate in second. Howe held on to take the win, DeVos’ Volpe remained in second to finish just ahead of Kilroy in third.

The final race got underway a little past one o’clock with several individual recalls. The racing continued to be tight with Howe delivering yet another dominating performance to claim his third victory of the day. Kilroy had a great race coming to place second, followed by DeVos’ Delta finishing third.

Top ten results (after three races)
1.) Steve Howe/Morgan Larson, Warpath; 1-1-1 = 3
2.) Ryan DeVos/Ed Baird, Volpe; 3-2-6 = 11
3.) John Kilroy/Lorenzo Bressani, Samba Pa Ti; 7-3-2 = 12
4.) Joe Woods/Geoff Carveth, Red; 4-5-5 = 14
5.) Dalton DeVos/Jonathan McKee, Delta; 9-4-3 = 16
6.) Joel Ronning/Bill Hardesty, Catapult; 5-6-7 = 18
7.) Lanfranco Cirillo/Michelle Paoletti, Fantastica; 6-8-8 = 22
8.) Benjamin Schwartz, Pisces; 2-11-13 = 26
9.) Alex Jackson/Charlie McKee, Leenabarca; 13-7-10 = 30
10.) Jason Carroll/Cameron Appleton, ARGO; 12-17-4 = 33

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