Fulcrum Speedworks Rocket

Curious2

Anarchist
625
225
The real factor here is that board boats and millennials-that-post-on-tiktok don't meet in the Venn diagram.

I'm sure thousands more hours of hairy guys on board boats and lasers are sailed than foilers, but what do you see on yt/'gram/TikTok? Skinny bikinis wing foiling. And Ruggero Tita on his moth.

There's only two YT wingfoiling vids that have more views than the most popular Laser vid. "Ruggero Tita Moth" only brings up YT vids with less than 200 views, whereas there's a bunch of Sunfish vids with over 80k views.

Can't find any detailed demographic figures but as far as I know the wingfoiling crowd tends to be over 45, while Lasers for example have huge fleets of teens.

So is the "real factor" actually real?

The two classes Ruggero Tita seems to mainly sail are selling less than 100 boats per year, combined, and neither of them has more than 80-something boats in any country. That seems to say a hell of a lot about how important such vids are for selling our sport.
 
Last edited:

martin 'hoff

Super Anarchist
2,173
1,049
Miami
There's only two YT wingfoiling vids that have more views than the most popular Laser vid. "Ruggero Tita Moth" only brings up YT vids with less than 200 views, whereas there's a bunch of Sunfish vids with over 80k views.

Can't find any detailed demographic figures but as far as I know the wingfoiling crowd tends to be over 45, while Lasers for example have huge fleets of teens.

So is the "real factor" actually real?

The two classes Ruggero Tita seems to mainly sail are selling less than 100 boats per year, combined, and neither of them has more than 80-something boats in any country. That seems to say a hell of a lot about how important such vids are for selling our sport.
I was half joking. And Ruggero's moth reference is definitely a joke. But. Hop on Instagram and the wing foiling vs laser count is way lopsided. You be the judge of windfoiling apparel selection.
 

Curious2

Anarchist
625
225
I was half joking. And Ruggero's moth reference is definitely a joke. But. Hop on Instagram and the wing foiling vs laser count is way lopsided. You be the judge of windfoiling apparel selection.

Sure, it was just a spur for me to check out the reality of how well social media "cool" actually seems to impact the real world.

On Insta, wingfoiling gets almost three times as many posts but that's logical because the Laser is just one class of dinghy. Add in the other dinghy classes and the picture changes.

It's interesting to dig deeper and see that, apart from some professionally-promoted classes, the number of insta posts seems to reflect the actual number of active sailors of each class much more accurately than the sailing media's coverage or the marketing by World Sailing does. The Laser dominates, followed by the Opti (half as big as the Laser) and then the 420, J/70 and 29er at about one third as popular as the Opti.

On the other hand, the Nacra 17's spot in the Olympic means that it has a respectable number of Insta posts but its actual sales and activity are dismal. So the "hype it and they will come" approach still seems to be a recipe for failure.

I'd also query whether wingdingers are actually significantly younger than Laser sailors; the anecdotal evidence doesn't seem to be that way.
 
Last edited:

tillerman

Super Anarchist
5,435
2,675
Rhode Island
There's only two YT wingfoiling vids that have more views than the most popular Laser vid.

Can't find any detailed demographic figures but as far as I know the wingfoiling crowd tends to be over 45, while Lasers for example have huge fleets of teens.

So may one ask where you found the reality behind the "real factor"??
What is insta?
I think it's the new name for the Star.
 

DaveK

Super Anarchist
Cleans new sail :cool:

Sunfish Sail.jpg
 

Dave Clark

Anarchist
898
839
Rhode Island
IMG_2665.jpg

IMG_2715.jpg

IMG_2442.jpg

IMG_2138.jpg

IMG_4669.jpg
IMG_4653.jpg

Meanwhile, last Saturday in Marion MA, some people sailed their Rockets together. They liked it and they're going to do it again.

DRC
Ps. If we're measuring success via instagram videos alone scroll one over in this post and watch the guy in blue (sailor unknown) catch a puff at 15 seconds in and dust the motorboat

PPS. Current fleet head count is 11
 
Last edited:

tillerman

Super Anarchist
5,435
2,675
Rhode Island
View attachment 546855
View attachment 546856
View attachment 546857
View attachment 546858
View attachment 546859 View attachment 546860
Meanwhile, last Saturday in Marion MA, some people sailed their Rockets together. They liked it and they're going to do it again.

DRC
Ps. If we're measuring success via instagram videos alone scroll one over in this post and watch the guy in blue (sailor unknown) catch a puff at 15 seconds in and dust the motorboat

PPS. Current fleet head count is 11

That's awesome... hopefully a sign that fleets of Rockets will develop elsewhere. Where next?
 

Dave Clark

Anarchist
898
839
Rhode Island
That's awesome... hopefully a sign that fleets of Rockets will develop elsewhere. Where next?
For the billionth time. Sailboats don't need to be used in fleets. It's one of many entirely valid uses. Businesses trying to force fleets into existence is bad for sailing.

However, fleets that occur naturally from the volition of enthusiastic owners are an extremely good thing. This is one of those on basically every metric and it should be celebrated for that. I'll elaborate: no discount was given, no promotional visits were done, zero organizational effort was put in by anyone in or associated with the company. 11 aquatinted people decided they wanted to sail together and individually purchased Rockets at retail and came to pick them up when each person's boat came off the line. Now they sail together. This telegraphs to anyone else looking to join that joining is as simple as repeating those simple steps. Barriers to entry smashed! I view this as an extremely good sign for the group activity/sport of sailing as a whole. If class growth is always a matter of "Oh I really wanted a fleet at my club but nobody from the company would come out and make it happen", there will not be enough growth in any class of any kind to outpace decay. If people who want to sail together act without inhibition and buy boats so they can sail together, sailing around buoys might just have a shot this century. This is what's happened in Marion and I at least, contrarian that I am, view it as a resounding triumph for sailing as a whole.

I'm overjoyed and hope it grows on those principles. When or if another fleet coalesces is up to free thinking individuals who none of us know and the choices they make, not the manufacturer. In this case, this fleet was spearheaded by Will Tifft and Dan Cooney. Hat's off to them. This is really cool!

DRC
Ps. Sorry for going so hammer and tongs on what is clearly a very nice and supportive post, but the collectively implied community-wide assumption that boats are only good if they are raced in a manufacturer-assisted, regimented, national/international competitive circuit absolutely has to go.
 
Last edited:

tillerman

Super Anarchist
5,435
2,675
Rhode Island
For the billionth time. Sailboats don't need to be used in fleets. It's one of many entirely valid uses. Businesses trying to force fleets into existence is bad for sailing.

However, fleets that occur naturally from the volition of enthusiastic owners are an extremely good thing. This is one of those on basically every metric and it should be celebrated for that. I'll elaborate: no discount was given, no promotional visits were done, zero organizational effort was put in by anyone in or associated with the company. 11 aquatinted people decided they wanted to sail together and individually purchased Rockets at retail and came to pick them up when each person's boat came off the line. Now they sail together. This telegraphs to anyone else looking to join that joining is as simple as repeating those simple steps. Barriers to entry smashed! I view this as an extremely good sign for the group activity/sport of sailing as a whole. If class growth is always a matter of "Oh I really wanted a fleet at my club but nobody from the company would come out and make it happen", there will not be enough growth in any class of any kind to outpace decay. If people who want to sail together act without inhibition and buy boats so they can sail together, sailing around buoys might just have a shot this century. This is what's happened in Marion and I at least, contrarian that I am, view it as a resounding triumph for sailing as a whole.

I'm overjoyed and hope it grows on those principles. To find out when or if another fleet coalesces is up to free thinking individuals who none of us know and the choices they make, not the manufacturer. In this case, this fleet was spearheaded by Will Tifft and Dan Cooney. Hat's off to them. This is really cool!

DRC
Ps. Sorry for going so hammer and tongs on what is clearly a very nice and supportive post, but the collectively implied community-wide idea that boats are only good if they are raced in an regimented international competitive circuit absolutely has to go.
I think we are in violent agreement, Dave. Firstly, my question about where another Rocket fleet might develop was not directed at you as the manufacturer but rather to random readers of this thread who might be inspired to follow Marion's example. Just being curious.

Indeed, as someone who has probably logged more lifetime hours than most folk blasting around on my own in various singlehanded boats (and blogged about many of those solitary sails) I am well aware that you don't need a fleet to enjoy a boat; and certainly not implying that it's the boat builder's job to build fleets.

Good luck with the Rocket.
 




Top