Re: Is Sailing an Elitist Sport?
Of course the America's Cup is elitist! Just look at the obscene amounts of money they pour into the boats in order to win a trophy. I don't begrudge them their exclusive parties and viewing areas. It's their money! Let them have the prime locations, there is still plenty of places the "masses" can watch for free!
As for sailing in general, no, I don't think it is elitist. There are plenty of ways for the average joe to get out sailing. In fact, sailboats are a more affordable way to get on the water than power boats! I certainly couldn't justify the expense of a 30' power boat! If I had to pay those fuel bills I would never go out!
Even yacht clubs aren't necessarily elitist. Some are exclusive in that you have to be able to afford membership, and certainly there are elitist people within the clubs, but by and large my experience is that regardless of the size and value of the boat you own, we all share a love of the water.
As with any sport, there are the elite levels, and then there are various levels below that right down to the kids just starting out and the "beer leagues".
1979 Santana 30 Tall Rig