Re: Why is beam reach (or near to it) the fastest point of sail?
the wright brothers are spinning in their graves.
as a graduate aerodymanicist it seems many sailors think my education took half an hour. no two things can complicate aerodynamics more than low speed and three dimesionality, and sailng has both. leave the junior high school diagrams alone and learn the wind and your sails. the reason s boat sails fatest on a broad reach are many and very complex - just believe and enjoy. i never think about aerodynamics when i sail or fly.