MastersContact: Don Hackbarth Phone: 770-587-3653
Today’s ‘mature’ One-Design dinghy sailor is looking for a boat and a Class that will allow their continued participation in the recreational sport they have loved so much over the years. The design of the Snipe is ideally suited for the older sailor. It’s a stable boat with a high boom. It can be sailed with a wide range of competitive crew weights from 280lbs to 350lbs. You don’t have to be a gorilla or a gymnast to sail this boat. The two person, non spinnaker layout, is simpler to sail. Finding a teammate to crew (and only one!) with you is a lot easier, allowing inexperienced teammates to move up on the learning curve fast. It is not unusual for healthy sailors in their 60’s and 70’s to continue to compete effectively with the younger crowd.
A great example of this is the current USA National Champion and recent past World Champion of the Snipe Class, Augie Diaz, who is over 50 yrs old and a Master. Further, he competes regularly against his father, Gonzalo ‘Old Man’ Diaz, who is in his 70’s! Most of all you will find that the Motto of Serious Sailing, Serious Fun® will be found throughout every event, on and off the water. That is what the Snipe family is all about.
Master’s National Championship
The Snipe USA Masters National Championship is held annually at a host club, usually in the early fall. Traditionally this regatta covers a 3 day period during the week on a ’sailor friendly’ body of water. Not more than 2 races per day are sailed, no early starts, and if the wind gets above 12 knots there is no racing. Social activities are the focal point.
To participate in the USA Masters the skipper must be 45 or older and the team age must total 80 or more years. There are awards given by age group; 45-54, 55-65 and 65-74 and 75+. There is also an overall award to the Champion who very frequently is not a young stud under 55!
The 2010 USA Masters National Championship washeld at the Wawwasee Yacht Club in Syracuse, on September 14-16. 25 teams participated in the event representing over 1600 years of Snipe sailing experience! Mike Blackwood and Paige Haydin won the event and were the top Apprentice Master team (45-54). Andy Klein and Michelle Morphew were the top Master Team (55-64), Gene and karen Soltero the top Grand Master Team (65-74) and Ken andMary Ann Rix were the top Great Grand masters (75+).
The 2011 USA Masters will be held at the Coral reef YC in Miami Friday May 13 thru Sunday May 15.
Plan to participate. You will have a great time.