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Zonker

The more things change...

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From Nat Herreshoff 1876:

3-amaryllis-catamaran.jpg?w=768

...in the second half of the race when the wind picked up that Amaryllis showed her true paces. While the sandbaggers struggled to stay upright, “the Amaryllis began to develop the wonderful speed that she possesses, and she fairly flew along the Long Island shore, passing yacht after yacht as if they were anchored..”  In the words of the enormously experienced Captain Coffin, Amaryllis could “justly claim to be the fastest thing of her inches under canvas that floats, and it is doubtful if there are any steamers of her size that could out-speed her in a straight reach with the wind abeam.”

Despite her slow start Amaryllis came home in 3h 19m 32s, seven minutes ahead of the next boat, the famous 27’ sandbagger Sophie S, and a massive 20m in front of Pluck and Luck (previous class leader)

The captain of the Clara S  protested, protesting that Amaryllis was “neither a yacht nor a boat.”  The World reported that “it was the general opinion that the protest came too late, and should have been made before the start. ...

The committee ruled Amaryllis out of the event, arranging that instead of the first place diploma Amaryllis would receive “a diploma and a certificate that she had attained the highest speed ever made by a vessel of her length” ...

Amaryllis was the sensation of the regatta, and the press were loud in their praise for the “fastest craft in the world”. ...

... Herreshoff ...took a few months leave from his day job and settled down to feed the demand for his amazing new invention.  “I got leave of absence from Corliss Steam Engine Co. for 3 months in summer of 1877, and started a trial business of building four, at contract price of $750 apiece” he recalled to his son Francis decades later. “I gave my time and there was no shop rent or overhead, and so came out just even. They should have been $1100 or $1200.” ...

... It didn’t take long for Herreshoff to stake the cats’ place on the racing scene. “We double-boat fellows must have a club and an annual regatta” he wrote... Francis wrote years later, all that he wanted for cats was their own events; even the creator of the racing cat didn’t believe that they should race against the monos. ...

 

 

 

 

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I raced my F242 against monos in my local club beer can races for several seasons.  Herreshoff was right, multihulls shouldn't race against monohulls.  Handicapping doesn't work because wind speed affects multihulls so much more than monohulls.  I won races where I made horrible mistakes merely because the wind was in the mid 20s to 30 kts.  I lost races that I sailed perfectly because the wind was in the 8-11 kt range.  By extension, it is even difficult to have fair races between multihulls of different characteristics (big tri, small tri, condomarans, beach cats) simply because they just won't sail the course the same way.  I'm not saying we shouldn't race...it is the only way you truly learn your boat in all conditions....but racing should be a social event--unless, of course, you have a one design class.  And even then....weights of production multihulls vary hugely and do you know any designer who doesn't change the boats year by year?

 

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This could be the start of a great thread! Thanks Zonker. I wish I could vote for Rudy Choy for president. Good diplomacy!

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Russell, did you get the Newick, book?  If you already have it, send it to them.  Aloha, Guerdon.

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So many details on Amaryllis to comment on but just one thing (other than that extreme club footed jib) is the sliding gunter rig, the perfect sailing canoe rig.

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