Annual General Meeting 2016 of the International Melges 24 Class Association - Summary

November 7, 2016 - IM24CA - The International Melges 24 Class Association (IM24CA) held the 2016 Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Munich on Saturday, November 5th preceded by the Technical Committee Meeting on Friday, November 4th.

The Minutes of the AGM will be published shortly, but this is the short summary what was discussed and decided. The meeting started with introducing new IM24CA officers and new National Class Administrators followed by the Chairman’s report from Jens Wathne being in this role for 2 years by now. To give an overview of the local activities a class report of Australia was introduced and Norwegian representative Annette Haugsdal was introducing the current situation in Norway.

Financial report 2016 and budget proposal for 2017 was presented by Treasurer Tomi Hakola saying that the class is in a good situation as an overall income has increased thanks to the larger number of members and increased membership fees. Also he mentioned a stable sale of sails over the last years. The budget for 2017 was approved by the AGM with minor amendments, IM24CA membership fee and the cost for one sail ticket remain the same.

Tomi Hakola also presented a Marketing and Communications report listing all the media channels what the class uses to be on track according how the world and media is changing. The class has recorded some remarkable statistic numbers during the year being active in a large level of social media and creating footage and coverage as much as possible. Now the first priority is to build finally a new website integrating it to the social media platforms – the process has started already.

Peter Göckel, Chairman of the Technical Committee was introducing Technical Report of Europe and Builder’s Report from Melges Boat Works. There wasn’t a report available from US.

Regards to the elections Jens Wathne (NOR) as the only nominee for the Chairman’s post, was re-elected for the second term (for 3 years as per renewed Constitution), for the second term was also re-elected Michael Good (SUI) as the Member Europe in IM24CA’s Executive Committee. To the post of Vice Chair America was elected Duncan Stamper (CAN) as the only nominee stepping to this post from the Member America’s post after two years. Paul Krak Arntson (USA) was elected to Member America’s post with a casting vote from the Chairman as per votes he had a tie with the second nominee Kevin Welch (USA). Treasurer’s post was left open due to the need of clarification of the Constitution and it will be open until the Extraordinary General Meeting will be called shortly.

Italian class opened a discussion on Jury selection and umpiring on the water, also they were expressing their concern about having too many races per day at the title event – it was said the most important thing is to have fair and high-quality racing than the planned number of races no matter what. There was a good discussion held and proposed that the survey could be run among the sailors to have a good input for the regatta regulations under the renewing now.

Regards to the Class Rules after the discussion USMCA took off their submission on Hatch Boards with a need to have a proper wording for that to be decided at the EGM, Tech Comm seconded this motion. Modification to H.3 Re-Weigh rule was discussed and USMCA took this submission off the table - Tech Comm did not approve the Class Rule change - common understanding was that any exception will create “open doors” to interpret the rule. USMCA’s submission on Backstay was supported by the Tech Comm and accepted by the AGM with a proper wording to the H.2. Regards to USMCA’s submissions on Lifelines, Tech Comm supported the Class Rule Change. AGM voted for the rule change with the following wording: The hiking lines shall be tight at all times. The distance between the top of the bearing point of the lifeline straps and the deck shall be no closer than 10cm when a 20 kg load is placed at mid-span.

Italian class’ submission to permit the use of a second method to fix the tack on the bowsprit and to use an optional loop with a block or a ring with the eyestrap on the bottom of the bowsprit to avoid the movement of the loop was supported by the Tech Comm and approved unanimously by the AGM. Proper wording will be published in the Minutes.

Submission of the Tech Comm Chair Peter Göckel to introduce membership entry fee was not approved by the AGM, Peter withdrew it but the discussions how to get the boat owners pay IM24CA and NC membership fee will continue.

Future events - current situation
John Abel, IM24CA Championship Coordinator in Western Hemisphere gave an overview about the Miami Worlds’ 16 preparations. The concerns on moorage, launching-hauling out etc were addressed to the organizers to deal with before the event yet.

Tomi Hakola, NCA Finland, was talking about the preparations of the 2017 Worlds in Helsinki having close to 40 boats registered by now. Organising team, Jury and most of the RC is on place, sponsorship negotiations are underway, so are the discussions with the ferry companies.

Duncan Stamper (CAN) gave an overview about the current situation of the 2018 Worlds Canada regatta management saying they have a really good organizing committee and sponsorship person in charge. Target number will be 70-80 boats (min 60).   

Decisions on future events
2018 Worlds South Americans - Chilean class has an intention to have a first ever South American but the bid has not been presented yet. 2019 Worlds – Jan Schmidt from German class introduced Warnemünde as the best option for the event in Germany as Kiel withdrew.  The vote was called and the majority voted in favour of giving the rights to the spot Warnemünde if the correct bid will be presented.  2019 North Americans – Brian Hutchinson explained that Newport lost the bid of the Worlds 2016. Now Newport is waiting the amendments of the IM24CA Regatta Regulations before saying their final say. This is an historical place and there is a professional team to host the event.

Under Any Other Business some topics were discussed. The preliminary schedule for the European Sailing Series is available, the dates for Portoroz, Riva del Garda, Marstrand, Helsinki and Luino has been set, Medemblik need to be confirmed. Brian Hutchinson introduced QUANTUM World Winter Series with 3 events in US – The question was raised about the series’ name including „World“ – this is misleading as the events are taking place in US only and it was requested to delete from the name of the series. Melges 24 logo update – Krak Arntson has been working on that to give the best overview about the logo history and needs some housekeeping as the original logo on hull and sails is not used by the class – will be fixed in the process of building a new website.

More and detailed information will be available in the Minutes of the AGM.