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SAILING AT NLGYC

Sailing — it's at the core of who we are.


First and foremost, NLGYC is a sailing club. 


Every weekend, late-June through August, we race single-hull boats: Stars, Thistles, Lasers, Flying Juniors, N-10's, and Optimists. We also run a mixed-class, PHRF (Performance Handicap Racing Fleet) race, so virtually any boat with a sail can join in on the fun! 

Participation is easy: Come on over to the club on a weekend! Sailors always need extra crews (no experience required) or you might find a pleasant ride in a motor vessel helping on a safety patrol boat.


Beyond weekend racing, our Junior Program sailors train most weekdays, and NLGYC usually hosts a regatta or two each summer. They are always posted on our club calendar.



   

   


   

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   Star   

The International Star (or Starboat) is a 6.9 m (22.7 ft) one-design racing keelboat for two people.

The boat must weigh at least 671 kg (1479.3 lb) with a maximum total sail area of 26.5 m2 (285 ft2). It is sloop-rigged, with a mainsail larger in proportional size than any other boat of its length. Unlike most modern racing boats, it does not use a spinnaker when sailing downwind. Instead, when running downwind a whisker pole is used to hold the jib out to windward for correct wind flow. Early Stars were built from wood, but modern boats are generally made of fiberglass.

The Star class pioneered an unusual circular boom vang track, which allows the vang to effectively hold the boom down even when the boom is turned far outboard on a downwind run. Another notable aspect of Star sailing is the extreme hiking position adopted by the crew and at times the helmsman, who normally use a harness to help hang low off the windward side of the boat with only their lower legs inside.

The Star was designed in 1910 by Francis Sweisguth—draftsman for William Gardner’s Naval Architect office—and the first 22 were built in Port Washington, New York by Ike Smith during the winter of 1910-11. Since that time, over 8,400 boats have been built. The Star has been an Olympic Games class since 1932. Although far from a modern design, the class remains popular today, with about 2,000 boats in active racing fleets in North America and Europe.

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   Thistle   

The Thistle is a high performance one-design racing dinghy, also used for day sailing, popular in the United States. The current hull configuration uses a glass-reinforced polyester molded boat with wooden rails, centre board trunk, thwart, fore grating, and aft grating. The spars were once made from spruce, but are now of entirely extruded aluminum construction.

Thistle hulls are relatively light for their size; they have no decking or spray protection, which saves weight. The sail plan is large for a boat of this size, consisting of a marconi rig with a main, jib, and symmetrical spinnaker. The sail plan is larger for the boat’s weight than in many other dinghies, which makes Thistles perform extremely well in light wind. Their hulls have wide, rounded bottoms, allowing the boats to plane in winds as low as 10 knots. It is not uncommon to see thistles efficiently making their way, while other dinghys of similar design are becalmed.

Thistles are generally raced with a three person crew: a skipper, a middle, and a forward person. The optimal total crew weight is generally 450 lb to 480 lb (US) depending on wind. The crew weight, however, is generally not the deciding factor in determining the outcome of the races. In fact, class rules do not limit crew weight. In all but the strongest winds, an experienced two person crew can manage the boat. Hiking straps are permitted for either droop or straight leg hiking, but a trapeze is not. The class is generally family friendly, though experienced sailors will still be challenged at the higher levels of competition.

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   Laser   

The International Laser Class sailboat, also called Laser Standard and the Laser One is a popular one-design class of small sailing dinghy. According the Laser Class Rules the boat may be sailed by either one or two people, though it is rarely sailed by two. The design, by Bruce Kirby, emphasizes simplicity and performance. The dinghy is now manufactured by several boat manufacturers worldwide.

The Laser is one of the most popular single-handed dinghies in the world. By 2010, the number of boats produced was approaching 200,000. A commonly cited reason for its popularity is that it is robust, simple to rig and sail. The Laser also provides very competitive racing due to the very tight class association controls which eliminate differences in hull, sails and equipment.

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   Flying Junior   

The International Flying Junior or FJ is a sailing dinghy which was originally designed in 1955 in Holland by renowned boat designer Van Essen and Olympic sailor Conrad Gülcher. The FJ was built to serve as a training boat for the then Olympic-class Flying Dutchman. The FJ has a beam of 4’11” and an overall sail area of 100 square feet (9.3 m2). These dimensions make the FJ an ideal class to teach young sailors the skills of boat handling and racing. 

In 1960 the Flying Junior formed its own class organization and by the early 1970s the Flying Junior was accorded the status of an International Class by the International Yacht Racing Union, the pre-cursor to the International Sailing Federation. This status indicates that the class applies to strongly restricted class rules and holds regularly scheduled international regattas.

Today the FJ is sailed in Japan, Canada, Germany, Italy, Belgium, The Netherlands, and the United States. In the US, many high school sailing and Intercollegiate Sailing Association programs own fleets of FJs. The college and high school programs in the US use a version of the FJ known as the Club FJ. This boat is slightly different from the International FJ in that it does not use Trapeze and it has a smaller, non-spherical Spinnaker.

Although the FJ resembles other sailing dinghies, the dimensions of the hull allow it to sail closer to the wind than many other models.

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   N-10   

The NATIONAL 10 class was originally known as the TURNABOUT CLASS, built in 1953 by Harold R.Turner as a small wooden single or double handed dinghy class. Many boats were kit built by “do it yourselfers” in their garages or cellars.

The boats were initially built as a junior training boat, although adults enjoy the boats as well. The class has grown mainly in the New England and Northeastern regions of the U.S. Fleets are located in Northern Lake George, New York, Boston, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine and New Jersey.

In 1972 the TURNABOUT CLASS formally changed it’s name to the “NATIONAL 10″ class. It also decided to refine the class by approving a new mold, designed as close as possible to the original wooden design. This was accomplished by J.R.Duplin Marine in 1972, with some major improvements, including aluminum spars. The minimum class weight of 215 lbs was increased to 255 lbs to keep both the older Parker River turnabout, the woodies, and the new Duplin National 10’s more competitive.

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   Optimist   

The Optimist is a small, single-handed sailing dinghy intended for use by children up to the age of 15. Nowadays boats are usually made of fiber reinforced plastic, although wooden boats are still built.

It is one of the most popular sailing dinghies in the world, with over 130,000 boats officially registered with the class and many more built but never registered.

The Optimist is recognized as an International Class by the International Sailing Federation.

The International Optimist is sailed in over 100 countries by over 160,000 skippers and it is the only yacht approved by the International Sailing Federation exclusively for sailors under 16. At the Beijing Olympics, 85%[4] of medal winning skippers were former Optimist dinghy sailors.

  


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