IM24CA World Council - Annual General Meeting 2022 - summary and voting results
IM24CA World Council reelected Chair, Vice Chair Asia Pacific and Member Europe; elected new Vice Chairman Americas and Member Americas, and accepted a few Class Rule Changes
November 28, 2022 - The World Council of the International Melges 24 Class Association held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) virtually on November 19. Here’s a short overview of the voting results and decisions made.
2022 IM24CA World Council AGM website
Minutes of the meeting
The following IM24CA World Council members and Executive Committee members were present:
- Laura Grondin – Chair, representing America with Proxy
- Duncan Stamper - Vice Chairman of Americas
- Kevin Nixon – Vice Chairman Asia Pacific, representing Australia with Proxy
- Piero Andolina – Vice Chairman Europe
- Michael Tarabochia - Member Europe, representing Germany; rep Slovenia and Switzerland with Proxy
- Paul Krak Arntson – Member Americas
- Miles Quinton - Treasurer, representing Great Britain with Proxy
- Michael Schineis – representing Austria
- Dan Berezin - representing Canada
- Ivo Matic – representing Croatia with Proxy
- Soren Blume Svendsen - representing Denmark; rep Norway with Proxy
- Tõnu Tõniste – representing Estonia
- Alain Lepraux – representing France
- Botond Weores – representing Hungary with Proxy
- Andrea Racchelli - representing Italy
- Mike Gozzard - Technical Committee Chair and Executive Committee Member
- Branko Parunov - Chief Measurer and Technical Advisor, Technical Committee member
- David Bartol - Championship Coordinator Europe
- Arto Kiiski – Advisor and Technical Committee member
- Jan Schmidt - Technical Committee member
- Piret Salmistu - Administrator, Media Coordinator, Minutes Taker
- Marko Mišura – Observer, Croatia
- Soren Laugesen – Observer, Denmark
- Chelsea Simms – Candidate for Vice Chair of Americas, USA
- Scot Zimmerman – Candidate for Member Americas, USA
The number of votes were counted according to the membership numbers of 2022. Here is a link to the number of votes by countries and voting results.
The meeting started with Chair Laura Grondin welcoming everyone and presenting the goals which the Executive Committee has set for IM24CA in 2023.
- Host a World championship in Denmark with at least 50 boats
- Host a North Americans in Canada with at least 35 boats
- Solicit and receive/approve a Worlds location for 2025 in Europe (will require an EGM) by June 2023 - EGM prenotification
- Solicit and receive/approve a Europeans for 2024 and a North Americans for 2025 (will require an EGM) by June 2023
- Complete the 2024 plan for the ESS by August 2023
- Create a photo/video plan for 2023 that includes a broader spectrum of photos for participants
- Masts, boats, and spare parts – must have these available for our members
- Increase our membership by 10% and review our membership fees
- Find 2,000 euros or more in sponsorship or ad revenue
- Outfit our representatives with appropriate logo/apparel
- Improve the operations of the class (actions include: establishing a transparent process for creating the ESS, approving streamlined regatta regulations, and reviewing/establishing job descriptions for all roles)
- Complete a survey of our members (note a US survey was completed) to better understand our members interests
- Re-initiate the project to find the boats, particularly those that are not sailing; create the place on the website to share that information
- Create ways to help / encourage teams to race: this could be training events, a list of people willing to consult on reviving a boat; encourage the World Council to help shape these initiatives
Media & Communications, financial and technical reports, incl the technical report from the Worlds 2022 and Europeans 2022 were presented and the budget for 2023 was accepted.
IM24CA’s website, launched in February 2020, continues to show remarkable growth in activity of the visitors (45k unique visitors in 2022 vs 30k in 2021; 75k sessions in 2022 vs 48k in 2021), remaining the main source of class information. Social media engagement increased both in Instagram and Facebook, and a high level reach up of reels (videos shown off the account followers), videos and images were reported. The importance of having high level events media coverage and also posting photos and videos by sailors, tagging IM24CA accounts, will help IM24CA to create better exposure for the Melges 24 year round and around the world, engaging more and more followers.
Financially: IM24CA’s income remained flat year to year on a like for like basis and beat 2022 budget due to sail royalties. Class affiliations were up 1.5% overall; down 5.6% in North America and up 5.5% in Europe. Sail Label sales were essentially flat in 2022, down 1.7%. Expenses were kept to 2022 budget. As a result, Net Earnings were 13,396 Euro, 10,400 Euro better than budget.
For 2023 income is expected to remain flat on a YtY basis. Class affiliations are projected to be up slightly, and Sail Label sales are projected to be thesame as 2022. Expenses are projected to be 2,000 Euro lower than 2022. This should create Net Earnings of 9,000 Euro. The ways of increasing IM24CA income were discussed.
The Technical Committee reported the status of several topics. The situation with the spar is moving in a positive direction but as are most things in the marine industry, progress is frustratingly slow, especially in Europe. After the unsuccessful attempts to dial in the bend characteristics of a spiral wound carbon spar, it was determined that it was not going to be cost effective to continue developing the prototype Selden spars. Melges Boatworks (MBW) has successfully purchased the Southern Spar tooling and IP (build documents) from the Hall Spars (North Sails Group) and has shipped these assets to Ceilidh Composite Technologies. The last update indicates the first prototype spar will be available for testing before the end of December. It was also reported that MBW is also negotiating with a European-based manufacturer to build hulls and potentially supply parts. At the moment the only reliable source for parts supply is to go directly to Zenda. The last update suggested that this potential new builder is close to completing the first boat.
Full Technical Committee report
All national class representatives introduced themselves and reported about the year, which was much better than Covid-19 pandemic impacted 2021. The main concerns raised: to get sailors again to the local events; where are our “sleeping” boats lying – local NCAs to find out whether the owners will get back to sail or are willing to sell their boats; potential new owners are looking for the used boats, but the second hand market is missing; old boats are really competitive, but are missing from the market; availability of essential spare parts like masts and spreaders.
Annual class reports are available at the AGM website under tab “Country reports”.
Melges 24 events
2022 Worlds – Lauderdale YC, Ft Lauderdale, Florida, USA – May 7-15
2022 Melges 24 Europeans – Yacht Club Italiano, Genova, Italy – October 22-29
The class wished there were more boats at both events, but the conclusion was that the timing was not the best – the Worlds were too early and Europeans too late in the year. 2023 dates for the Worlds and North American Championships should serve sailors’ preferences better. From the organizing point of view both the Worlds and Europeans 2022 were well executed both on the water and ashore. Great hospitality was shown in Ft. Lauderdale as well in Genova. Concerns were raised by the Chief Measurer that the class should have more control over the title events and the organizers should comply with the class documents i.e. event management requirements.
2023 Melges 24 Worlds – Middelfart, Denmark – June 24 – July 1 – status report
Søren Laugesen, the manager of GoSail in Middelfart, who was regatta director for the 2015 Melges 24 Worlds at the same venue, reported the status of their preparations. Compared to 2015 marina has been renewed and has lot more space than back then. The dates of the event have been set.
Event logo design is in the final stage to be presented for IM24CA. Event website is up at https://gosail.dk/2023-melges-24-world-championship/ with some preliminary information. The aim is to work on the Notice of Race latest template to publish it in the beginning of December. Full status report available here
2023 North Americans – Toronto National YC, Canada – September 14-17 – status report
Dan Berezin, the President of the Melges 24 Canadian Class Association reported that the organizing of the event by Toronto National Yacht Club is in full swing. The NA Championship will be held on September 14-17, preceded by the Canadian Nationals. The timing of the event will match with the best wind conditions at that time of the year. The PRO will be Dave Sprague, who has served as PRO for the 2017 and 2022 Canadian Nationals. The Notice of Race is a work in progress to be ready for publishing in December. The club is well supporting the event, and the locals are really looking forward to the entries from the US and also from overseas. Charter boats will be made available.
2024 Worlds – San Francisco Yacht Club, Cam USA – August 20-24 – status report
Krak Arntson, IM24CA Member Americas, gave an overview of the current status of the organization with the detailed and updated information presented in the bidding document. The SFYC has excellent facilities, new buildings for hosting regattas, enough moorings and fun conditions. SFYC will coordinate with IM24CA to ensure that regatta requirements and guidelines are adhered to. SFYC will work with the IM24CA, and US Sailing personnel to ensure an appropriate Chief Judge and jury are selected, as well as measurement and classifier officials, as needed. The Principal Race Officer will be determined in conjunction with the IM24CA recommendations and guidelines. SFYC has a large and experienced group of race management volunteers. Each year 150 Members served 600 volunteer days on the water to assist in delivering over 30 regattas organized by SFYC. SFYC was hosting 2013 Melges 24 Worlds.
Krak was reporting Melges 24 hull #001, owned by the Dutch owner living in Tahoe Lake area, has been rejuvenated with a plan to take part 2023 Worlds in Denmark, US Nationals at Melges 24 home Lake Geneva and 2024 Worlds in San Francisco – to celebrate 30th Anniversary of the Melges 24 boat!
Bids are open for the future events:
- World Championships – from 2025 on (2025 is Europe, 2026 is North America and so on)
- European Championships – 2024 and 2026
- North American Championships – 2025 and 2027
IM24CA has received the Letter of Interest from Slovenian, Croatian and Italian national classes to bid for the 2024 Europeans and 2025 Worlds. Since no bid itself was presented, World Council has decided to request a proposals for the 2025 Worlds (Europe), 2024 Europeans, and 2025 North Americans.
Proposals are due not later than March 1, 2023 for voting at an EGM to be held on Wednesday, April 12th.
Elections of the officers & appointing the staff
Five posts of the Executive Committee were open for election and two appointments were to confirm by World Council.
Office terms are about to end on December 31 for Duncan Stamper as Vice Chair of Americas and for Paul Krak Arntson as Member Americas. Big thanks and round applauds for all their time and devotion to the class during many years was expressed.
- Current Chair Laura Grondin (Dark Energy USA864) was re-elected for the second term.
- Chelsea Simms (Straightarrow USA830, Grosse Pointe, Michigan, USA) was elected as Vice-Chairman Americas.
- Scot Zimmerman (Bad Idea USA717, Traverse City, Michigan, USA) was elected as Member North-America.
- Kevin Nixon (ACCRU AUS812), was re-elected as Vice-Chairman of Asia Pacific.
- Michael Tarabochia (White Room GER677), was re-elected as Member Europe.
The World Council unanimously re-appointed Mike Gozzard from Canada to continue in the position of the Technical Committee Chair and appointed Carol Ewing, Event Championship Coordinator of the Melges 24 Worlds 2022, in the position of Championship Coordinator North Americas.
Proposed Class Rule Changes
The following Class Rule Change proposals were accepted by AGM and will be sent to World Sailing for their review and ratification:
Rule Change Proposals from National Classes – all documents available at AGM website and the comments of Technical Committee can be read at their yearly report:
- USA 1 - POV (Point of View) Camera - Rev 1 with Tech Comm comments
- USA 2 - Weed Sticks - Rev 1
ITA 1 - CREW WHEN HIKING - with Tech Comm comments- Withdrawn by ITA class on Nov 16
- ITA 2 - CREW INSIDE COMPANIONWAY
Rule Change Proposals from Technical Committee:
- 2022 Rule Change C.7.1 HULL MODIFICATION, MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR Rev 1
- 2022 Rule Change C.7.2 (a)(11) USE Rev 1
- 2022 Rule Change C.8.1 MODIFICATIONS, MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR Rev 2
- 2022 Rule Change C.8.2 KEEL 2019 Cdn Rev6 2022
- 2022 Rule Change D.2.3 MODIFICATION, MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR Rev 2
- 2022 Rule Change E.2.2 MODIFICATIONS, MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR Rev 2
- 2022 Rule Change H4 Boat and Appendage Repair Approval Form Rev 2
- 2022 Rule Change Proposal H2 Cabin Main Halyard Rev 2
- 2022 Rule Change Proposal H2 Purchase Systems Bowsprit Launch Rev 1
Laura thanked Mike and everyone in the Tech Comm and other working groups for the tremendous work done during the past year.
Any other businesses
1) Andrea Racchelli on behalf of Italian class commented their Class Rule change submission about hiking saying that many tacticians have been asking if there is a chance to amend it to have two persons in while hiking. There are new potential owners around but are afraid of doing the main and helm by their own. He admitted being rushed with this proposal without having a discussion within the national class. But he also admitted it would be good to have this proposal on the table and start a discussion.
There were several opinions expressed about this proposal including:
- There’s no Melges 24 Class Rule preventing teams from doing that now and several teams are practicing it
- This change will bring up crew weight limit rule issues
- This change could penalize 5-6 members crews
- There are six-member crews who will be penalized by this change – then we look for a light tactician, while no 1 should be heavy among 3 heavier ones; we could lose women in the fleet this way.
2) Proposal about IM24CA financials - There was a proposal to increase membership fee, which has remained the same since 2015. Discussion was held on raising the fee for 2023 and a common understanding and agreement was to do so, but this requires notice to and approval of the World Council. Therefore, it was decided to call an EGM no less than six (6) weeks from the AGM or in early 2023 for the new fee to be discussed and decided upon.
3) Alain Lepraux, French Class President proposed a new event and event series format (Master Series + Finals) to engage more young people in Melges 24 sailing. He will describe the proposal and will present it to IM24CA in 2023.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:10 pm ET.