Monday, November 15, 2010

Henderson said

Scuttlebutt founder Tom Leweck, who was one of the keynote speakers this past weekend at the U.S. SAILING One Design Sailing Symposium, shared an observation that he had gained from past ISAF President Paul Henderson about good club racing.

Henderson said:
 “Unfortunately…we have taken the fun out of the game and made it too technical--too much emphasis on boat speed. Sailboats should be no more expensive than the cost of a second car…and the time spent fixing them should be one hour for every ten hours on the water. In my opinion it is the pro's desire to win at all cost without respect for the sport that has caused our problems.”

Henderson felt boats should be:
- Gender-equal
- Last a long time
- Keep their value
- Be tactical - not technical
- No trapezes
- Heavy one-designs--not sensitive to crew weight
- Sails that last at least a season
- Sailmakers should not be allowed to use their own sails

Henderson felt races should be:
- Geared to new reality of two income family & need for quality family time
- Races start from front of YC not requiring 10-mile sail for upwind start
- Should race on week nights, leaving weekends free

Henderson said:
“We all seem to have forgotten what sailing is all about. It should be fun--good racing, good food …and a drink at the yacht club. The best day you can have in your life is two great races, back to the club to smile a lot, rehash the races and join together with other sailors who will become your lifelong friends.”

Paul Henderson

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At 6:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He describes a Catalina 22 in virtually all respects.

But neither Scuttlebutt, Sailing Anarchy, Saling World, nor any other publication would give a Catalina 22 regatta the courtesy of one paragraph, even when we pull 45-60 boats.

Key West Race Week told us "you are not the kind of boats we are interested in."

That's OK. We have a lot of fun without all you hot shots. :)

Bob Keim, Nashville, TN

At 8:27 PM, Anonymous Alex said...

- Sailmakers should not be allowed to use their own sails

can someone explain this one?

At 5:20 AM, Blogger Paul Henderson said...

Sure! If you buy a complete sail inventory from a loft say for $50,000 the loft will supply an employee to sail with you. You pay for all the food, booze, travel and other amenities. You win most of the races and think you are brilliant. Next year you only buy a spinnaker and the person in the next slip buys $50.000 inventory so the loft guru sails with them and you win nothing. Success goes tot he highest bidder and take sthe fun out of the game. Answer is do not let the sailmakers sail on boats in club races with their sails. Simple Solution! EH!
In fact the sailmakers who do this should declare all such largesse as taxable benefits since the club racer pays for everything on after tax $$ while sailmakers write it off as business expenses.

At 7:38 AM, Blogger don said...

Hmmm, if it costs $50k for a suit of sails then I'd re-think your class. Our local fleet loves to sail with sail makers. We have many lofts in town and we get Quantum and North guys racing Snipes all the time - oh, and they usually don't win. Why? I imagine they spend lots of time with boats with $50k inventories. But, we have a heck of a lot of fun and you really have to know your stuff to win. They're also great with new racers and are all very open to show rig setup and answer any questions. -don

At 8:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Snipes, Snipes, Snipes!!!

JF, San Diego

At 9:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Weeknight sailing is fun but lacks two important ingredients: Sun and Wind.

At 10:53 AM, Anonymous Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt editor said...

In reply to Bob Keim's comment, despite Scuttlebutt's best efforts, it remains a challenge to keep track of every event. While this one may have fallen through the cracks, it could have been prevented if someone in the Catalina 22 class had posted the 2010 National Championship on the Scuttlebutt Calendar - a database shared by the three publications Bob mentioned. It was not posted, and we certainly don't recall receiving an event report following the event (which would definitely have been published).

At 6:00 PM, Blogger Bob said...

Thanks Lew! You will be getting them!


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