Why Race

Why Race each weekend of the Summer Series If I can never win?

The first answer is so that you can learn to sail better. The more times you sail the more comfortable and knowledgeable you become.

The second reason is to get out and have some fun. Sailing is one of the few sports where it is easy to have a little fun, and socialize at the same time even if you don’t have a boat. If you don’t have a boat others are always looking for crew or more crew. Persons with a boat like other to crew with them to share knowledge and to just have someone different to talk to.  

Yes, the chances that you will taking home the first place trophy at the end of the season are not very good if you are a true novice but if you sail on a regularly you will not remain a novice and numbers may work in your favor. If a person sailed twenty one of the twenty four races in the Summer Series and scored a least a DNF in fifteen of the races. That is to say you showed up at the start and started in twelve races and helped on the committee boat for three races on one race day as required to compete for a trophy in the Summer Series. Then you may finish better in the series than the person who always finished ahead of you and missed several races. and the reason is that a boat that finishes last gets one point for each boat that finished ahead of it. A boat that Does Not Finish (DNF) get a point for each boat that finishes plus one point. A boat that gets to the starting line but Does Not Start (DNS) gets a point for each boat that started plus one point. But a boat that does not come (DNC) to the starting line gets a point for each boat in the series plus one point for each race that is missed and if the race can not be dropped because you missed more than three weekend those added points are hard to offset.


A number of years ago I was crewing on a class A (the big boys) handicap boat that was competing for boat of the year honors. We have to count twelve of thirteen races, twelve to sixty miles long each and we needed a minimum crew of six men to sail. One weekend the skipper was sick and only three of us showed up at 8am for a forty plus mile race in twenty to thirty knot winds. This boat did not like anything over 12 knot so the minimum crew for that day was eight men plus the skipper. So the three of us rigged a storm sail and motored to the clubhouse where we picked up the skipper and motored to the starting line. After our class had started we sailed across the starting line and then told the race committee we were retiring. We docked the boat the skipper went home and I jumped on a Flying Scot for the rest of the weekend. At the annual banquet it was announced that there was a five point difference in the score for the top four boat and that we had won by 1 point despite the fact that in twelve races we had not placed first in a single race, but had been the most consistent with one DNF and a bunch of second and and thirds. The effort had paid off.