19 February 2007

19 FEBRUARY 2007 ? Check out this really cool interview with Ken Wruk. Ken is Melges 17 Fleet Captain for Lake Geneva, Wisconsin and he took some time to share some of this thoughts with Andy Burdick with Melges Performance Sailboats.

AB: Thank you for taking the time to talk sailing. Fun this time of year! What got you into scow sailing?

KW: Our family has been involved in racing sailboats ever since I was in kindergarten. I began racing the Opti, Butterfly and Laser through grade school. In college I began racing sailboards and attempted to make the US Olympic team after college. Once we moved to Lake Geneva I was crewing for my father on a Sonar when the local E-scow fleet seem to fly past us like we were standing still. Instantly I thought, ?Wow. I?ve GOT to do that.? On Monday morning I called-up Melges and placed an order for an E-scow.

AB: You have sailed on many different types of scows. You race the E Scow, Melges 17 and now are going to race a brand new Melges A Scow in 2007. Can you let everyone know what you like about each particular boat?

KW: As mentioned, I spent a decade racing sailboards. This is a completely individual sport. As such, over the years, I missed the camaraderie of team sports. You get the team aspect in scow racing. You also get speed. Catamarans give you speed, but lack the tactics and strategy of highly competitive course racing. Scow racing gives you all three ? incredible speed, all the tactical brain teasers of a chess game, and team camaraderie. The Melges 17 is spunky, seems to float out of the water on its foil boards, and offers incredible speed and tactics downwind thanks to the asymmetrical chute. The E-scow offers even more of a team sport with all the excitement. To be honest, I do look forward to the day when the National fleet moves to the asymmetrical chute. This will improve E-scow racing even more. As for the A-scow. What can I say? The A-scow is the pinnacle of life at Lake Geneva. No more words need be spoken.

AB: You love to attend regattas. You travel cross-country to attend. What do you learn from these championships?

KW: Traveling to regattas is crucial to get full value out of a racing program. As highly competitive as Lake Geneva sailing is, nothing improves a sailor like competing in national and international events. You get out of sailing what you put into it. Staying home misses the boat.

AB: We just saw you in Key West attending Acura?s Key West Race Week. How would you describe that experience?

KW: Challenging. This international regatta experience, is a prime example of how much a sailor can gain by stepping out of their local sand box and accepting a new challenge. The long and persistent shifts at Key West are nothing like what we get at Lake Geneva. As such, my tactics suffered but I learned a ton. Nonetheless, the event was a huge success tons of fun for all!

AB: To get really charged up for racing, what?s your top 5 on your I-pod?

KW: I like ?The Beat? channel 36 on Sirius Satellite Radio to get the blood pumping.

Thanks Ken! We really look forward to seeing you on the regatta circuit in 2007!
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