MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
'Blu Moon' retains Melges 24 European title and 'Lenny' wins in Corinthian division

Championship 2014
MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
The winner in overall division Blu Moon SUI 825
Photo by Pierrick Contin

MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
The winner in Corinthian division Lenny EST 790
Photo by Pierrick Contin
MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
Top 3 in overall division - Blu Moon SUI 825, Giogi ITA 693, Strange Brew HUN 392
Photo by Pierrick Contin 
MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship 2014
Top 3 in Corinthian division - Lenny EST 790, Salty Dog DEN 779, DEN 779
Photo by Pierrick Contin
09 May 2014 - Balatonf�red, Hungary.  The MKB Bank Melges 24 European Championship title was decided in the tenth and final race of the week-long series on Hungary's Lake Balaton today when Franco Rossini's Swiss entry 'Blu Moon'- the reigning World and European Champions - match-raced their closest rival Matteo Balestrero from Italy on 'Giogito the back of the fleet to claim the title for the second consecutive year.


Despite Balestrero's best efforts to extract 'Giogi'from the vice-like cover inflicted by Matteo Ivaldi at the helm of 'Blu Moon'throughout the race, after three legs of sailing around at the back of the fleet, the Italian skipper finally accepted defeat and both boats retired from the five-leg race.


Soon after, the elated 'Blu Moon'crew held up the hand written message "Forza Flavio"on the back of their hatch cover - a tribute to regular 'Blu Moon'helmsman, double Melges 24 World and European champion Flavio Favini, who had to miss this championship due to injury.  


Meanwhile, an eleventh place in the first race of the final day was good enough to keep South African helm Ian Ainslie on the Hungarian boat 'Strange Brew'in third place overall.


After a disappointing regatta by their standards, Norway's Oyvind Jahre on 'Storm Capital Sail Racing'returned to more normal form to win the first race of the day, with Italy's Carlo Fracassoli on 'Maidolliswinning the final race.


A second place in the final race of the championship for Italy's Ricardo Simoneschi on 'AUDI'sealed overall fourth place for him ahead of Great Britain's Geoff Carveth on 'Gill Racing Team'in fifth.


Estonian sailor Tonu Toniste at the helm of 'Lenny' closed out the Corinthian Melges 24 European title in style, winning by 12-points and in the process finishing in eighth place overall in the main fleet.


Second in the Corinthian division was Denmark's Peter Warrer on 'Salty Dog'who also finished thirteenth in the main fleet.


Two points behind Warrer in the third Corinthian spot was another Dane, Kris Houmann on  '', who finished fourteenth overall.


Having led the main fleet for almost all of the first race today and only dropping to third overall on the final downwind leg, Finland's Tomi Hakola was the comfortable Corinthian winner in that race.


Italy's Alfredo Capodanno on 'Marrakech Express'was the top Corinthian in the final race.


Winning 'Blu Moon'tactician Gabrielle Benussi said he and the crew had needed to be on the top of their game to win the title this week and paid tribute to the quality of their rivals on 'Giogi', who he said had pushed them hard all regatta.


"It's been a great championship as usual,"Benussi said. "Today the match-race against Giogi was very close and we had to be at our best to get ahead of them and keep them behind.


"We are very pleased to win and we are all thinking about Flavio and hope he will be well enough to sail again soon."


Corinthian winner Tonu Toniste from Estonia said he and his crew were very happy to claim their third Corinthian European Melges 24 title.


"It was tricky sailing on the Lake Balaton," Toniste said."The weather conditions were difficult, complicated and unpredictable. We were glad and happy that the Corinthian title was ensured before the final race. We are very happy about our overall result and especially about the Corinthian title as we were so close to it last year. Beyond all question it was a great and very well organized event here in Balatonfred!"


At the championship prize giving this evening International Melges 24 Class Championship Coordinator thanked the MKB Bank Sailing Club and the regatta title sponsor MKB Bank for organising a great championship and welcomed all teams to the next Melges 24 title event - World Championship 2015 to be held in Middelfart, Denmark.



Photo gallery - Pierrick Contin
High resolution images are available to acredited media. For further information please E-mail Piret Salmistu
Live Stream footages - by Zerogradinord

For further information on the Melges 24 European Championship 2014, please contact:


Justin Chisholm

European Championship Press Officer

+44 77 6993 8722 or  


Piret Salmistu     

IMCA Administrator & Media Coordinator 

+372 507 7217 or


Enikő N�meth

Regatta Coordinator

MKB Bank Vitorl�s Klub


About the Melges 24
The Melges 24 is designed by Reichel Pugh and holds a unique position among the world's one design sportsboats as one of the most successful classes of high performance yachts. For more information please visit the official website of the

About the MKB Bank Sailing Club:
The MKB Bank Sailing Club is located on a unique area in Balatonf�red. Its exclusivity is given by the beautiful nature, the infrastructure and the huge area where all the activity has its own place. This venue is really familiar, has several opportunities for all age group, like playground, tennis court, mini golf course, swimming pool, grill spot, sailing education, sailing boat renting etc., and also convenient for business events with its conference room, accommodation possibilities, restaurant. Perfect venue for the sport and social life in the same time!