If you’ve watched On-The-Water Anarchy this year you probably know who Federico Michetti is, but you might not know what a big kid he is.  His enthusiasm for all things sailing is infectious, and gives him an air of youth that fits well with what he’s peddling as the President of Melges Europe – pure racing boats.  Along with his beautiful and ruthlessly helpful assistant Luisa, Feddy is outselling the boys in Zenda despite Europe’s economic woes – which may be worse than our own.  Only one US owner has sailed his Melges 20, while this weekend nine boats got together for the first-ever Melges 20 regatta in Monte Carlo – the Primo Cup. Here’s his report:

We sailed three races on Saturday and two races today.  Saturday was nasty – typical Monte Carlo with big waves and only 5 knots of wind.  Then today was 8 knots, and then 15 knots – and you can imagine the grins on the faces of all those sailors who went downwind today!

It is a small boat with a lot of sail area, so it is really not so fast to figure out the boat upwind.  But the best part is that NO ONE really has a clue how to set the rig up, so we are all in exactly the same positions!  We will soon have a tuning/training weekend in Lake Garda with photographers and chase boats to accelerate the learning curve for everyone – we were probably getting 40% of the performance out of the boat this weekend.  I think there is right now a small advantage to have four people on the boat, but not much.

You can not imagine how little sleep we have had getting everything together for this regatta. We worked 18 hour days for the past ten days, but it was all worth it to see the looks on everyone’s faces – they are in love with this boat, and with their fleet.

My friend Philippo, also a Melges 32 owner,  finished second on his new boat – he said to me, “I can’t wait to come back to all those people who said such crap about these beautiful toys. We love them!” Photo Carlo Borlenghi.