Friday, January 25, 2013

A quick & dirty Sunfish history.

I like my martinis up and dirty and aggressively shaken so a few little chips of ice get into the vodka/olive mix and keep it cold just a tad longer than without.  So, now that you know a quick little history of the way I like dirty martinis, go get one so you can get through this saga about the history of the Sunfish sailboat.

Once upon a time... waaaaaaaay back in in another century, 1945, two dudes named Alexander Bryan and Cortlandt Heyniger, who made iceboats, randomly got into making flat, wooden pontoon hulls with lateen sails on un-stayed masts which they called the Sailfish - the predecessor to today's Sunfish.  Oh so cleverly naming their company Alcort, Inc., they got some press about making that boat from some little known magazine called "Life" which said it was "the sportiest little sailing craft afloat".  Fast forward, but not too fast, don't get dizzy after all that vodka, to 1952, and the introduction of the Sunfish.  Basically, a better design that anyone can sail.  I mean anyone and all those anyones better not be thinking they can sail better than Team4Real.  Forget it.  Anyway, focus please, in 1995, the American Sailboat Hall of Fame condemned wait no, I mean commended the Sunfish for "being the most popular fiberglass boat ever designed, with a quarter million sold worldwide".   Nicely done guys!  If you prefer to read the unadulterated story, click here.    So Alcort sold to AMF (we all know what that really means) and got sold again a few more times but still exists and you can go get yourself one right here!

If you read the Wiki page, oh never mind, you're probably not even reading this part, so save the hard work of mouse clicking and just know that Sunfish are pretty big as a racing class.  Yes, Sunfish have class, baby, class and a lot of it.  Also, the big race in Hampton that Team4Real plans to win, is mentioned in the Wiki article as a premier event.  We go big, oh yes we do.  (counting on you not to notice premier in what exactly)    Get some class in your life too, be a member of the ISCA!

The real Sunfish looks like this:

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Vote early, vote often!

In the spirit of democracy, and I guess Corinthian yachting, the Hampton Roads Sunfish Challenge & Dinghy Distance Race is offering up three (3) courses for this year's race for us sailors to vote upon.  So of course the first question is can you vote more than once?  Apparently yes.  And the second question is why would anyone vote for the longest course, I mean, it'll only take that much longer to get back to the party!

I voted for Course #1, the shortest course, but also a course I think will be a hoot to do - crossing a major shipping channel and through an anchorage for large vessels - on a freakin' Sunfish!  Should be quite the sight when a small fleet of dinghys start mucking up the freighters, or getting run over by them...  Clearly I was thinking ahead to the party when I cast my vote, not the getting run over part.

George wondered aloud, always dangerous, if perhaps we should all sail the course we voted for regardless of which course is chosen.  He reasons that way there will be two guaranteed winners of Team4Real.  Smart!  Since he and I have both voted for Course #1, it remains to be seen who will be sailing Course #2 or #3.  Stay tuned, the gripping vote tally, hanging chads and all, is sure to be an edge of the seat nail biter - if only I knew when the announcement was to be?