Slow Racing or Fast Cruising? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 79 Old 08-13-2013 Thread Starter
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Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

Some interesting perspectives have come up in the Mutiny and Know It All threads. And, while they are based in the age-old angst between "Racers" and "Cruisers" (which will likely never be resolved), I think there is a great deal of middle ground that is kind of perfect for SN.

For example, me. I LOVE offshore racing. But I'm not at all "hardcore" about it at this point in my life. In the races I've done, one boat was the more "hardcore" boat (spartan accommodations and food, worries about weight, lots of tension and yelling, etc.), the other boat was all about enjoyment (great food, nice accommodations, serious-yet-chilled environment, etc.).

The funny thing is, the second boat performed much better than the first.

I am about to start "racing" my own boat. But I'm going to be perfectly content in the "Aloha Class"-style divisions. We'll have plenty of water, plenty of great food, plenty of nice drinks, and every comfort we can think of short of a strap-on jacuzzi. We'll take it all "seriously" and do our best to win our division, but my primary goal is having a great time and enjoying the trip...win or lose. I'll just expect us to be safe, and improve our performance with each attempt.

Low bar? Maybe. But it's still racing to me.

The bottom line is, racing is just about the best possible way to improve your sailing skills. And it's a great deal of fun. It doesn't have to be done to the extreme most cruisers point to when denigrating racing. Just like cruising doesn't have to be done in a full-keel 2KSB with an acre of solar panels like most racers point to when denigrating cruising. There's definitely middle ground.

Whaddayathink?


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post #2 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

This is what I do. We "race" our crusing boat, but have no expectatuions of winning.

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post #3 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

Hey Smack, check out this serious racing boat, watch the whole thing and tell me if you think these guys are living in spartan conditions with no water....

Notice how they suffered through the crossing...

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Last edited by mark2gmtrans; 08-13-2013 at 02:13 PM.
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post #4 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

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Whaddayathink?
I think it's your boat and you ought to use it in what ever way pleases YOU.

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Free, is the heart, that lives not, in fear.
Full, is the spirit, that thinks not, of falling.
True, is the soul, that hesitates not, to give.
Alive, is the one, that believes, in love.
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post #5 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

It's all about what you want, and making sure your goals are aligned with the entire crew. I have no problem racing on a hard core race boat where weight is a huge concern and you're constantly making adjustments and doing everything you possibly can to win, as long as that doesn't involve tons of yelling and tension. I think it's definitely possible to make that happen as long as everyone already has good communication skills and a shared goal of finishing as quickly as possible. On the other hand, I've done many beer can races where the goal was to go out and enjoy the sailing and results weren't a big deal, and I enjoyed that alot too, but if I didn't have that mindset already I probably would've started yelling and I wouldn't have had fun.

Basically, whatever floats your boat, and make sure it's what everyone else wants too.
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

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Originally Posted by mark2gmtrans View Post
Hey Smack, check out this serious racing boat, watch the whole thing and tell me if you think these guys are living in spartan conditions with no water....

Notice how they suffered through the crossing...

Atlantic crossing on Wally 100 Indio with VOR-sailors - YouTube
Yeah, I've seen that one. Love the chick in the floppy hat.

A client/friend of mind who I introduced to sailing wants a Wally in the 80'-100' range. I'll get to help him with the test sails when he's ready to pull the trigger. Livin' it baby!


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post #7 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

Good point Smack.Lots of venting going in those threads.I grew up sailing in New England. I did LOTS of racing in the summer when I was a kid.That was the curriculum.That was it.We didnt learn how to build boats boats or cruise.It was about seamanship, tying knots,boat handling, then racing, from little cat boats up into IOR boats.Some people were very serious when racing,Lots of yelling and tension.That was never my cuppa tea but it was exciting to be in a big race start in Marblehead.There would be 30 or so different classes of boats in the bay at the same time in there various races.It was thrilling.ALL my sailing skills I honed racing.
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post #8 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

[QUOTE=mark2gmtrans;1073432]Hey Smack, check out this serious racing boat, watch the whole thing and tell me if you think these guys are living in spartan conditions with no water....

Notice how they suffered through the crossing...

Yup...

They don't even mind sharing the fact they managed to run aground! (I guess after 11 days they were happy to be ON land...??)
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post #9 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
Yeah, I've seen that one. Love the chick in the floppy hat.

A client/friend of mind who I introduced to sailing wants a Wally in the 80'-100' range. I'll get to help him with the test sails when he's ready to pull the trigger. Livin' it baby!
I might "want" a Wally in the 80'-100' range but that is about all I can do with a Wally...

I thought the video was great, and I love the boat. The floppy hat chick was great.

You noticed how they suffered along, barely having enough water to keep a gerbil alive, and the Captain was screaming and threatening to zip tie everyone to the rails, right? Such drama, such tension, no wonder more people do not want to sail on boats like that

It is good to learn from your mistakes, but much better to learn from the mistakes of others...
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post #10 of 79 Old 08-13-2013
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Re: Slow Racing or Fast Cruising?

Quote:
Originally Posted by smackdaddy View Post
...
The bottom line is, racing is just about the best possible way to improve your sailing skills. And it's a great deal of fun. It doesn't have to be done to the extreme most cruisers point to when denigrating racing. Just like cruising doesn't have to be done in a full-keel 2KSB with an acre of solar panels like most racers point to when denigrating cruising. There's definitely middle ground.

Whaddayathink?
I think many cruisers like to race against other sailboats. Yesterday I sailed out from a beach at the same time than one of the new HR 415, the wind was strong (about 20K with gusts higher) and son it was obvious that we were racing. My boat is a powerful one and as my wife is a bit scared with heeling I was sailing very conservatively ( second reef in and the Genoa a bit reefed). Even so we were doing 7.5K/8.5K at a broad reach, about the same speed of the HR, a fast boat with medium to high winds on a broad reach.

Then we went close upwind with very strong gusts and two to three meters waves (doing 6.5K to 7.5K) and soon it was clear that the HR was not a mach. Its angle was much worse and the boat was slower. After one hour the HR was a little spot and it changed course and disappeared while we made it to our destination, Monemvasia, an wonderful place. Check it on the google.

So, what is the problem with a bit racing while cruising?

Regards

Paulo


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