ODP Camp in the Melges 14

Game Faces ON at the Midwest High Performance Sailing Camp

Check out the media version here instead.

LAKE GENEVA, Wis (Sept. 25, 2017) – The Midwest’s top junior sailors trained hard at the Midwest High Performance Sailing Camp this weekend. The US Sailing Olympic Development Program (ODP) event was sailed in Melges 14s at the Geneva Lake Sailing School. 17 athletes were selected by sailing resume to represent the region at the ODP Clinic. These midwesterners received top-notch coaching, giving them a window into their dreams of sailing at an olympic level.

“You’re going to learn how to learn” was the running theme of the weekend. Sailors walked away from the clinic with a renewed excitement for sailing at an elite level, new techniques to improve their skills, and a deeper understanding of the Olympic pipeline in the United States and its accessibility to midwesterners.  “In the world of high performance sailing, there will be many moments where you will not be able to do what you want to do,” said Coach John Pearce. “You will fail to reach your goals. That’s a fact you must accept. You need to work hard, make mistakes, and make corrections. That’s how you will get to the top of your game.”

Harry Melges IV won the race series with a total of 8 points after five races, followed by Chapman Petersen with 11, Jack Schweda with 15, Kyle Navin with 20, and Jack Baldwin with 25. Learn more about the athletes here: bit.ly/ODPClinicMelges14

Each day started out with a workout led by Coach Caroline Atwood, a current olympic campaigner in the 49erFX class and the program director of the 29er Skiff Squad. Atwood played a key role, sharing advice, technical support, and stories from launching and training for her own campaign. US Sailing Youth Director John Pearce brought technical smarts and a knowledge of the sport through a youth development lens. USODA National Team Coach Marek Valasek directs the Geneva Lake Sailing School and the Buddy Melges Racing Team; the sailors learned from his experience sailing the Finn at the 1996 Olympic Games. Daily drone footage and stills provided by Melges Performance Sailboats and the Melges 14 Class helped sailors visualize difficult concepts and learn from their mistakes. Olympic Medalist & successful America’s Cup skipper Buddy Melges was the honorary guest at the team dinner, sharing stories and showing the students that Midwest sailors can reach the highest level of the sport.

The US Sailing Olympic Development Program forges America’s path to the podium. The ODP is a long-term effort to help young sailors build a complete high-performance skill set. The ODP provides world-class training to young athletes around the country who demonstrate talent and a commitment to improve.

The Melges 14 proved to be a perfect training platform for the clinic. Sailors were ecstatic about sailing the hottest new one-design dinghy. The modern singlehanded boat won the coveted Boat of the Year seal from Sailing World Magazine in 2016 and the fleet has continued to grow at a rapid pace since it was first introduced two years ago. With a modern, fast design from Reichel/Pugh, the Melges 14 is built by Melges Performance Sailboats in Zenda, Wisconsin USA and sails with one or two people. The carbon mast and boom complements its flexible sail plan with three rigs. With boats in North America, Asia, Africa, and Central Pacific, the Melges 14 is emerging as a true one-design racing boat.



About US Sailing’s Olympic Development Program:
US Sailing’s Olympic Development Program (ODP) was launched in January 2015 to lead the progression of the most promising youth sailing talent in the US. Guided by the US Olympic Sailing Committee’s Project Pipeline strategic initiative, the ODP fosters an integrated approach to training in the core development and Olympic classes, and is part of a system to provide the United States with a steady stream of well-prepared sailors. Some of these athletes will go on to represent Team USA at The Olympic Games, and provide the national team with consistent success. The fundamental premise of the ODP is to focus on the critical transition from youth sailing to high performance racing in Olympic classes. The ODP is funded through generous donations by individuals and organizations. The lead gift as well as a matching grant has been provided by the AmericaOne Foundation, and the US Olympic Sailing Program is actively seeking supporters to meet this generous match. For more information on the ODP and the America One Match campaign, please visit www.ussailing.org/olympics

About Melges Performance Sailboats
For more than 70 years, Melges has proudly delivered superior-built scows and sportboats around the world — New to the Melges family are the Melges 14 and Melges 40. Melges Performance Sailboats provides continuous customer service and product support unlike anyone else. Every Melges boat is signed, sealed, endorsed and delivered race ready by the best, for the best. For more information, visit Melges.com.

About the Melges 14
Built by Melges Performance Sailboats and designed by Reichel/Pugh, the Melges 14 is a modern singlehanded one-design made for one or two people. With its large cockpit and open transom, there’s never a need to bail. The carbon mast and boom complement its flexible sail plan with three rigs: Gold, Blue and Red. With boats in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa, the Melges 14 has emerged as a high performance one-design fleet. Sailors can order a custom Melges 14 dolly, easily car top it or tow it behind any vehicle. It’s a perfect beach boat, family sailboat or a one-design racing platform. It’s speed, quality, durability, comfort and fun wrapped into one dynamic sailing package. For more information, visit Melges14.com.

For more information on this story, contact:
Hannah Noll, Melges Performance Sailboats
Hannah@melges.com · (262) 275-1110