There's a new class on the block! The MELGES 15
Following a great first season for the Melges 15 in Ireland, they are now an Irish Sailing Affiliated Class. It started in May with the arrival of a container load of 12 boats into Dun Laoghaire with one boat heading over to Howth Yacht Club!
The Melges 15 has proved to be as good as the brochure description, if not better. It's fast, with a the fastest speed of an impressive 18.7 knots recorded so far. With a speed like that you might think that the boat is tricky to sail, but it's quite the opposite. The boat is stable downwind and easy to gybe. The spinnaker is asymmetric with a one pull hoist and pole out system. This simplicity makes it easy for most crews and helms to jump in and sail to a high level.
The Melges 15 completed its first National Championships held by the RSGYC. Nine boats competed for the title. It was great to see such a combination of crews from juniors, masters, all female and mixed crews. In a closely fought 6 race one day sprint series, Barry McCartin and Conor Kinsella emerged as overall winners.
Looking to the future there is great interest in expanding the Melges 15 fleet into more clubs and it is anticipated that another 12 boats will arrive next spring.
Winter sailing is planned for Dun Laoghaire on Saturday afternoons.
As a mixed class for both men and women, the Melges 15's have a bright future in Ireland as anyone of any age can get involved.