Re: Autopilot while racing
I don't think the decline of racing sailing can be blamed on not allowing autopilots.
There is no way an autopilot is going to out perform even a moderately skillful helmsman in terms of performance, and I'd even prefer a crappy helmsman that was keeping a look out since they are at least likely to avoid hitting something while an autopilot would blithely steer where ever it was last pointed (unless it began roaming as mine often does).
In short handed and distance racing I think RC's would be wise to amend the rules to allow autopilots but for races less than a a few hundred miles on a fully crewed boat I don't see a need to allow them.
s/v Palmetto Moon
1991 Catalina 36