The myth that one-design racing produces cut-throat competition doesn’t apply to these classic classes. Head to any of the winter circuit regattas, weeknight races or even the national and world championships and you will find a atmosphere that is more like a family reunion than hard-core battle. Built on the philosophy that sailing is better with friends, and that lending a hand with tuning or rigging tips, these one-design classes are bringing new sailors into the sport with “more-the-merrier” attitudes.
Chartering is more popular than ever and charter companies have gotten creative about how to get people on boats easily. Crewed charters have always been offered, but companies now offer middle-of the-road options for sailors who lack the confidence for a full-on bareboat experience. Flotillas organized by schools and charter companies provide the comfort of sailing in a group with help at the ready should it be needed. Some companies, like Cruise Abaco, offer a hybrid solution where a captain sails with the boat during the day then is whisked away in a dinghy once the boat is at anchor for charterers to enjoy the evening.
For years sailors were mostly left to call on experience and instinct when it came to routing a passage. Today, onboard computing power relying on copious amounts of data can show sailors any route with any number of variables applied.