new life

The Melges 20 is a fast, fun, easily trailered, high-performance sailboat with feet-in hiking and a manageable crew size of three or four. The boat is a blast to sail and the pictures and videos that come from the Miami events are proof positive.

Recently the class enjoyed three solid days of wind in the teens at the second regatta of the Winter series. After enjoying a 2021/22 season with strong attendance at the Miami events, the Melges 20 class has had a slower start to the 2022/23 season.

Class Manager Keiran Searle, in conjunction with a focus group of Melges 20 officers and owners, recently proposed changes to the regatta series to encourage current owners to attend, and for teams interested in trying out the class, to have access to less expensive charters. The goal is to promote participation and the Corinthian side of the class with a number of positive updates lowering the barrier to entry and removing the stigma of the class being ultra-high level.

To begin, the class has adopted the following changes for the February 10-12, 2023 event:

  • Make 4 charter boats available for a flat rate of $1,000 for the regatta weekend

  • Reduce the entry fee significantly to help encourage participation

  • On-water, between-race coaching will be included in the entry fee, focusing on the new participants. Only the official class coach can coach during regattas.

  • Introduce a Corinthian trophy for the top corinthian team at each event

  • Offer pre-event rigging reviews and tuning from class professionals to new and Corinthian teams

  • Post-race debriefs combined with social events to continue the learning and fun!

  • Testing of rig tune simplification and class rule adjustments to correspond.

The Melges 20 class leadership and active owners are focused on building the fleet for future events which include the February World Series event #3, the March World Series event #4, and the World Championships in April, all to be hosted in Miami.

For all of us who like to race sailboats, the more boats on the water, the more fun we all have so the class is applying the philosophy that a rising tide raises all ships; with more affordable access to the racing and attention paid to making the whole fleet faster, all Melges 20 sailors whether they are new to the fleet, a veteran team, or a professionally supported team, will all be working together to have fun on the water.

If you have ever considered the Melges 20, or need a reason to get your Melges 20 out of the shed, now is the time to get involved. Please reach out to Keiran Searle at [email protected] to ask about charters or to discuss getting your boat to the next Miami event.