sailboat racing books.

Steam Flyer

Sophisticated Yet Humble
Eastern NC
... The Cornelius Shields book is a bit dated but still a great read. 

Oh, get a pair of Nordic skis and find a golf course (preferably with snow) - great cardio cross training for hiking on your Laser!

View attachment 471797
This is a great read, and some short retrospectives on great campaigns and some America's Cup wins, IIRC.

Seeing Buddy Melges' name on the cover reminds me of his book, 'Sailing Smart.' Excellent read, mix of anecdotes and accounts of his past wins along with very specific advice about tuning, boat handling, sail trim, and how to have a competitive attitude without turning into a dick.

My Buddy Melges story: meeting him briefly at a boat show, where he was shaking hands and giving autographs to a long line of fans after his AmericaCubed win, I asked him if he was missing the good duck-hunting. His face lit up and he wanted to chat but said "Duty calls" and went on down the line. About a half hour later i was looking at something else and I felt a tap on my shoulder, turned around, there he stood. Buddy wanted to talk duck hunting, being sick of talking sailing while stuck inside. I'm actually not such an avid duck hunter but I have done so, chiefly as a means of proving that I can train dogs better than most; we had a great conversation about dogs. Then he said "I gotta go back to work, thanks a lot!" Seemed like a super guy.

FB- Doug

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Usual suspect
Toms River,NJ


Beer fueled Mayhem

Ballard, WA
I am reading, slowly, Kialoa US-1 Dare to win.  It has kept me entertained.

It is a beast of a book though.  More coffee table book...



Super Anarchist
PNW, ex-SoCal
The Stuart Walker books can be interesting.
They're very well done, but they aren't "light" reading.  And there isn't a lot of storytelling (mostly technique)

If the OP is looking for America's Cup books, there are a ton of them out there, up to and through the '87 Cup and the tradition of publising a book of the campaign seem to sort of fall off a bit:

1958: "Summer of the Twelves"
1967:  "Defending the America's Cup"
1970:  I know there was a good book about Bill Ficker and Intrepid, can't for the life of me remember the title
1974: "Racing for America's Cup", "The Grand Gesture"
1977: "Challenge '77" is good, there are a variety of Ted Turner books that came out too.
1983: tons of books, "Born to Win" is good, "Upset" is good, "Red Dog and Great White" is pretty good
1987: tons of books, "Comeback" is pretty good, "America's Cup 1987: the Inside Story", and Bob Fisher's book (*)
(Most of those can be found on Amazon or eBay, some are available as e-books, too)

(*) ANYTHING by Bob Fisher is worth grabbing

From there, there aren't a lot of great AC books until the 2010 cup, "Learning to Fly" is good, and there are others ("the Billionaire and the Mechanic").  For the 2013 Cup, "Winging it" is good, and Jimmy Spithill's book is pretty good.

There are some great biographies worth looking at: Sir James Hardy, Sir Thomas Lipton, Syd Fischer, Alan Bond, Ted Turner, etc

non-AC, if you can find a copy "Against the Odds" (1978 Canada's Cup) is really good. "Maiden" is really good, and "Taking the Helm" is pretty good.  There are several good books from the Sydney-Hobard besides "the Proving Ground", starting with Rob Mundle's "The Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race"

Just for fun, Keith Lorence's book is good, as is Charles ("Chaz from Taz") Blundell's and John Jourdane's

There are more, but I'd have to think about it and... that seems like a lot of effort for a lazy day in front of the fireplace <lol>



Hampton, Va
Don't know what level of sailor you are, but, there are two old Hobie books "Welcome to A Fleet" and "Speed and Tacktics" ,that, while very basic, teach a lot of good base lessons .  Here's a link to a pair on ebay right now  -

At the other end of the spectrum are Dr.Stuart Walkers books on speed and tacktics.  You'll need a level of knowledge and more than one winter to get through them, or even one of them.  Then you'll have to read them again, maybe 3 times and some of it will begin to make sense!  Happy reading!


Delta Dog

Nor Cal
If your interested in dissecting the art of racing, Walker and Perry are extremely helpful.

For great stories, the tale of the Stephens brothers, Elvstrom and Australias first AC win are excellent.



Ambassador of the Republic of R'lyeh

Bruce Farr, Russell Bowler, The Shape of Speed.

I was lucky to get this book from a stand at the Dusseldorf boat show some years ago, it was part of the decoration.

They wanted a donation of around 5 EUR.

In antiquarian bookstores it's apparently going for around 150 EUR.

Deal of my life.



Lots of good suggestions here so far.  Three from my personal collection I have really enjoyed

1-One watch a time-Skip Novak Chronicles the Whitbread race on Drum

2-Confessions of a Grinder-Brad Lewis insiders story of an AC campaign with the late Tom Blackaller

3-Race to Freedom-Vladislov Murnikov inside look at the Fazisi Whitbread race

I might also add All this and Sailing too, the autobiographical tale of one of the greatest designers of all time Olin Stevens.  I thought the book provided an excellent in detail account of his life, but it felt a little lacking in the "story behind the story".  Perhaps that is the nature of autobiography.  I would like to have known what was the driving force that moved him to excel, more about his parents, things that formed the the impressive talent that he was.  Minor grip on my part of what was an excellent book and with any of these just my 2 cents YMMV.



Oh one more from the collection

Blakes Odyssey-Peter Blake's take of the Whitbread  race on Ceramco NZ.  Hmm seems to be a pattern here that 3 of the 5 books I like deal with the WBRTW race, but I think you get the most human interest stories of this great adventure and challenge.