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Sailing battles demographic headwinds

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Sailing battles demographic headwinds

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Sailing battles demographic headwinds

Beyond the blow from the Great Recession, sailing faces pressure from aging baby boomers turning toward powerboats and millennials enjoying broader leisure options.

The number of U.S. residents who sail has been roughly flat for a decade, with about 3.5 million to 4 million people going at least once a year and 1.2 million sailing at least seven times a year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau and research by industry groups.

That’s despite a rise in the U.S. population and trends for the affluent to seek “special experiences,” such as sailing, Sailing World publisher Sally Helme said during this month’s Strictly Sail boat show in Miami, the largest sail event in South Florida, according to the Sun-Sentinel.

Richard Jordan feels the strain at his Jordan Yachts brokerage in Dania Beach, which specializes in used sailing yachts and employs five brokers.

His company’s revenue tanked during the Great Recession, recovered slowly from 2010 through 2012 and stayed flat in 2013 and 2014. It’s still roughly 20 percent off pre-recession levels, he said.

Yet even before the recession hit, the sailboat business had been declining.

“It used to be the dream to get a sailboat and cruise off into the sunset, but maybe people are working more and don’t have the time,” Jordan told the paper.

What’s more, baby boomers are turning to less physically demanding powerboats and millennials are less exposed to sailing than earlier generations that had fewer options for leisure, Jordan said.

At the Gulfstream Sailing Club in Fort Lauderdale, membership is down to about 90, off more than half from its peak decades back. And most members are older, even though the club welcomes sailors without boats and offers programs to teach children, said commodore Mike “Mick” Sawzak.

“Millennials really aren’t taking up sailing now,” Sawzak said, noting that some are put off by the cost of dockage and insurance for larger boats. “I see them up and down the canals in kayaks.”

The most recent industry survey presented by Sailing World magazine highlights the hurdles. In 2014, sailboat brokers in North America reported sales roughly flat, at $463 million.

No one expects a quick return to the heady days of the 1970s, when 12 million Americans sailed at least once a year. Families worked shorter hours, commuted less, had fewer child-only activities and could afford to take three hours on a weekend afternoon for a family sail, said Nick Hayes, author of “Saving Sailing.”

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Power boat grab: Is the sailing lifestyle sailing away?

The pursuit of sailing is fighting head winds.

Beyond the blow from the Great Recession, sailing faces pressure from aging baby boomers turning toward powerboats and millennials enjoying broader leisure options, industry leaders say.

The number of U.S. residents who sail has been roughly flat for a decade, with about 3.5 million to 4 million people going at least once per year and 1.2 million sailing at least seven times per year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau and research by industry groups.

That’s despite a rise in U.S. population and trends for the affluent to seek “special experiences” like sailing, Sally Helme, publisher of Sailing World magazine, said during the recent Strictly Sail boat show in Miami, the largest sail event in South Florida.

Richard Jordan feels the strain at his Jordan Yachts brokerage in Dania Beach, which specializes in pre-owned sailing yachts and employs five brokers.

His company’s revenues tanked during the Great Recession, recovered slowly from 2010 through 2012 and stayed flat in 2013 and 2014. They’re still roughly 20 percent off pre-recession levels, he said.

Yet even before the recession hit, the sailboat business had been declining.

“It used to be the dream to get a sailboat and cruise off into the sunset, but maybe people are working more and don’t have the time,” Jordan said.

What’s more, baby boomers are turning to less physically demanding powerboats, while millennials are less exposed to sailing than earlier generations that had fewer options for leisure, Jordan said.

At the Gulfstream Sailing Club in Fort Lauderdale, membership is down to about 90, off more than half from its peak decades back. And most members are older, even though the club welcomes sailors without boats and offers programs to teach children, said commodore Mike “Mick” Sazak.

“Millennials really aren’t taking up sailing now,” said Sawzak, noting that some are put off by the cost of dockage and insurance for larger boats. “I see them up and down the canals in kayaks.”

The most recent industry survey presented by Sailing World magazine highlights the hurdles. In 2014, sailboat brokers in North America reported sales roughly flat at $463 million.

The number of sailboats imported and those made in North America both rose, led by sailboats under 20 feet. Yet the value of new boat sales fell, as fewer people bought larger sailboats, the survey found.

North American sailboat production last year hit its highest level since 2008. But the roughly 7,000 sailboats produced still lagged far behind the 22,000-plus made in 2000, surveys show.

To encourage sailing, advocates are pitching the sport as affordable.

“Sailing has the perception of being expensive, but you can get a great used boat for a thousand bucks or less and still have a lot of fun,” said Helme, referring to boats under 20 feet that can be parked in a back yard and don’t require payment of dockage fees.

Boaters also can share ownership or join boat clubs to cut costs on larger sailboats, advocates said.

No one expects a quick return to heady days of the 1970s, when 12 million Americans sailed at least once a year.

Back then, families worked shorter hours, commuted less, had fewer child-only activities and could afford to take three hours on a weekend afternoon for a family sail, said Nick Hayes, author of “Saving Sailing.” He welcomes community sailing clubs that foster multi-generational sailing.

“If we could get only 50,000 more people sailing (regularly in North America every year),” said Sailing World’s Helme, “that would make a real difference to the industry.”


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Disabled & Paralympic Racing

Sailing is one of the very few sports in which
able-bodied sailors and disabled sailors, of all ages, can participate on
equal terms.  Outlined below are details of how people may like to get
involved with disabled racing, or get on to the Paralympic Pathway.

Here we will explain:

  • the Paralympic Pathway, or the route through disabled sailing to the top, and what you need to do to be part of the Paralympic Pathway;
  • the boats used in Paralympic sailing;
  • how to become “classified” within Paralympic sailing and much more.

The Paralympic Pathway

The route to through disabled sail racing and what you need to do to become part of the Paralympic Pathway.

Paralympic Class Boats

Details of the classes used in Paralympic sailing.

Classification

A Quick Guide to estimating eligibility for particiation in disabled sailing.

Paralympic Sailing

A brief history.

Non-Paralympic classes racing opportunities

Other classes and links

Access to boats at High Performance Clubs (HPC’s)

Sport England funding gives sailors access to boats


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Malaspina Regatta one for the history books

The 23rd annual Malaspina Regatta went off a day later than expected, but good things came to those who waited as the race was one for the history books.

A total of 18 boats were registered for the race on Saturday, June 30, but inclement weather postponed the race to Canada Day, July 1.

Unfortunately a number of skippers were unable to commit to sailing as they had previous plans, but Sunday, however, proved to be the right decision, weather wise, and the 15 boats that did show up for the race were met by a steady 10 to 15 knot south-easterly wind perfect for a great day of racing.

The 10 nautical mile triangular course, which began between Martin and Pearson islands just outside the entrance to Pender Harbour, took the boats out to a mark at Hospital Reef before heading up to Acland Rock off Nelson Island, and then returning to the finish.

All the boats got away to a good start with Peregrine, skippered by David Twentyman, being the first across the start line.

The initial leg saw the fleet gradually stretch out, with the trimaran Drifter, skippered by Ron Badley, rounding the first mark ahead of Wings II, skippered by Andy Paulus, with Avanti, skippered by Dave Zuest, and BC Navigator, skippered by Tom Barker, hot on his heels.

The next leg, which is usually a spinnaker run, proved too much for most skippers who chose to play it safe, and only Frendy, skippered by Charlie Park, and Seven, skippered by Dave Pritchard, raised their chutes.

This proved to be a challenge for the crew of Frendy, who found their spinnaker hour-glassed, and in the strong winds and rough sea state, it took them valuable time to clear.

As the fleet were about halfway down this leg, there was the added excitement of a slow-moving tug with a log boom in tow. This resulted in about half the boats passing ahead while some had to make a slight detour around the end of the boom. Frendy’s troubles were not over as they had problems dousing their chute rounding Acland Rock, which resulted in three boats passing them.

The final leg, which is also the longest, proved to be the toughest as the boats tacked back and forth against the tide and metre high waves. Some skippers decided to pass to the east of Hodgson and Pearson islands, hoping to find quieter conditions, while most tacked back out into Malaspina Straits.

The first boat across the line, for the second year in a row, was Drifter. The first overall on corrected time was awarded to Paulus, who is to be commended for single-handing his Ariel 48-footer Wings II to victory.

The division winners were: ‘AA’ Dave Zuest, ‘A’ – Paulus, ‘B’ Pritchard and ‘C’ Keith Muir in Matilda. See all the results in the sports ticker on page 56.

It was by all accounts the best race in the 23 years of the Malaspina Regatta and it was the only time that there has been a postponement.

Submitted

Photo Filename: S-Regatta.jpg

© Copyright 2015 Coast Reporter


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Corporate landlubbers take to the water for vulnerable children

Front right, David Fogg, of Waramanga, sailing on Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra to support disadvantaged children and young people. Photo: Melissa Adams

A collection of land-loving builders, lawyers and accountants piled into sailing boats on Thursday to raise money for a community program supporting vulnerable children.

Communities at Work chief executive Lynne Harwood said she hoped the regatta would raise close to $2000 for the Buoyed Up sailing program, which has catered for more than 600 vulnerable children in the last two years.  

“The program is about getting young people who are disengaged from mainstream school to have a sailing experience which also combines educational outcomes,” she said.

“We don’t get any government funding to do this program so it’s about raising the funds to support children.”

After  pre-drinks on the lawns of the Canberra Yacht Club and some competitive banter, the corporate and construction workers assembled for a light-hearted race around the lake.

Ms Harwood said the Buoyed Up program worked with teachers to help build disadvantaged primary students’ self-esteem, motor skills, resilience, teamwork and environmental knowledge.

“The Canberra Yacht Club and sailors have brought their own boats and sold them to corporates for a team bonding experience,” she said.

“We have a wonderful partnership from the Canberra Yacht Club and get funding from Yachting Australia and a whole group of business people who are sailors in their own right.”

Ms Harwood said sailing was traditionally seen as an elite sport so the program targeted children from schools in Richardson, Isabella Plains, Bonython, Ngunnawal, and Palmerston.

“We have found that not only were the kids more engaged in the act of sailing but they were also more engaged in their schooling as a result of the program,” she said.

One corporate buying a spot in the boat was David Fogg, from ProStyle Building Group, who became involved in the program after being prompted by a former client.

“At the end of the day this is about being involved in the community and  that’s what we’ve been trying to convey to some of our building friends who have a similar outlook on giving back to the community,” he said.

Mr Fogg, who was formerly  president of the Housing Industry Association in the ACT, said being involved in community projects was an important responsibility for all supporters of the sailing program. 

“When you see the kids out there, which I have done a few times, it is fantastic as you really do see the excitement and enthusiasm in their eyes,” he said.  

Ms Harwood said a University of Canberra report found the program provided tangible benefits for  students and schools.

“Instrumental to this program is the willingness of the teachers to disrupt normal daily routine in order to provide a unique opportunity for children who come from disadvantaged backgrounds,” read the university’s report.

“While the program alone has not been responsible for improving academic performance, the children involved appear to be more engaged in school and often use their sailing experiences in the classroom environment as a reference point for some of the activities and task requirements.” 


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Whelan, Van Drew introduce bill for a boat sales tax cap

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Employees work on a 92-foot-long Viking Yacht.



Posted: Wednesday, February 25, 2015 7:54 pm

Whelan, Van Drew introduce bill for a boat sales tax cap

By CHRISTIAN HETRICK, Staff Writer

The Press of Atlantic City


State Senators Jeff Van Drew and Jim Whelan introduced legislation Wednesday that would cap sales and use taxes on non-commercial boats.

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      Wednesday, February 25, 2015 7:54 pm.


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      EFG Bank win toughest leg of EFG Sailing Arabia from Abu Dhabi to Doha

      EFG Bank (Monaco)’s winning streak continues as Sidney Gavignet and his mixed Omani and European team notch up another leg win from Abu Dhabi to Doha to edge closer to defending their EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour title.

      - #Quiz360: WIN dinner for 2 at Jumeira Rotana, Dubai
      – #CWC15: World Cup Stick Cricket is here!

      Oman Sail’s vision to develop the region’s sailing talent and reignite the rich maritime heritage has become a reality thanks to EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour. Every leg of this event is designed to encourage sailing across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) by showcasing local role models and motivating youngsters to participate in the sport. The three Omanis onboard the winning boat EFG Bank (Monaco), Mohammed Al Mujaini, Abdull Rahman Al Mashari, and Abdallah Al Shukaili, are proof of just how Oman Sail’s concept has become a reality.

      Defending champion, Gavignet, and his all-star team including the Omanis and world-class sailors Damian Foxall, Alex Pella, and Nicolas Lunven, are unstoppable. In winds that reached 25kts, they increased their lead overnight and, by the time a shortened course was signaled at Gate 3, they had built up nearly two-miles over second placed Team Renaissance.

      Gavignet commented: “This was the toughest leg ever in the history of EFG Sailing Arabia – The Tour. It was breezy into headwinds all the way, and we had up to 1.5m waves, which is quite something for the Farr 30s.”

      Commenting on how Team EFG Bank (Monaco) keeps up the momentum on such a long, overnight leg, Gavignet added: “We keep the same speed but we do lots of rotation onboard and no crew is ever on watch for more than two hours, so this helps keep up the speed and avoids struggle when fatigue sets in.”

      Fahad Al Hasni and Team Renaissance are noted for their consistent performance during this event. This mostly Omani team, with the exception of British team member Philippe Falle as navigator, sailed a good tactical race and took second. The turning point in the race was when they took a risk. Al Hasni, commented: “We made a decision to separate from the fleet out to the right 10 miles away from the other boats and at midnight we crossed tacks ahead of Sidney. We were playing the shifts all the time and it really paid off. We then, however, had a problem with the clew outhaul (mainsail fitting) that separated from the boom so we stopped for 10 minutes and EFG Bank got ahead again. We are, however, thrilled to have finished second.”

      Gavignet’s closest threat this week is the UK based Team Averda skippered by Marcel Herrera. Herrera, a veteran of the Tour, and runner up to Gavignet in 2014, maintained second position on Leg 5 in the early stages but Renaissance were ahead at the shortened course finish line. “It was very tough and a real test of endurance and stamina. We fought to hold onto our second place but in the early hours, just before the finish, Renaissance managed to just get ahead and keep their boat going a little bit faster, so well done to Fahad and the guys.

      Mary Rook and her all-female team on Al Thuraya (Oman) had a good start but were rolled on the first stretch and ended up well down the fleet. Never a team to miss an opportunity to fight back however, they played the shifts, clawed their way back up the fleet and eventually finished a creditable fourth. Wouter Sonnema and his team on Delft Challenge were always in contention in third position in the early stages of the leg but had to settle for fifth at the finish.

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      Boat sales are up, sign of a healthier economy

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      NZ sailing team expanded for 2015

      The New Zealand sailing team has been expanded by three to contest major regattas in 2015.

      National selectors unveiled a team of 15, boosted by the recall of Sara Winther (Laser Radial) Michael Bullot (Laser) and Jon-Paul Tobin (Mens RS:X) after they enjoyed strong results last year.

      All are pursuing berths at the 2016 Rio Olympics, for which New Zealand has qualified boats in all 10 classes at the Games.

      The most intense competition is in the Laser class, where Bullot will line up alongside Andy Maloney, Sam Meech and Thomas Saunders at a number of elite international events.

      The team are spearheaded by Olympic women’s 470 champions Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie, and men’s 49er world champions Peter Burling and Blair Tuke.

      Yachting New Zealand high performance manager Jez Fanstone says the Olympic selectors will keep a close eye on performances throughout the year.

      All 15 sailors will contest the four-day Sail Auckland regatta starting on Thursday.

      WOMEN

      49erFX – Alexandra Maloney and Molly Meech

      470 – Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie

      Laser Radial – Sara Winther

      RS:X – Natalia Kosinska

      MEN

      49er – Peter Burling and Blair Tuke; Josh Porebski and Marcus Hansen

      470 – Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox

      Laser – Andy Maloney, Sam Meech, Thomas Saunders, Michael Bullot

      Finn – Andrew Murdoch, Josh Junior

      RS:X – Jon-Paul Tobin

      MIXED

      Nacra 17 – Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders


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      Siebert Yacht Management wins SureShade 2014 Dealer of the Year Award

      PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - SureShade, the U.S. designer and manufacturer of retractable sunshade systems for the marine industry, is pleased to announce that Siebert Yacht Management Inc. in Jupiter, Florida has won the SureShade 2014 Dealer of the Year Award for their outstanding sales and service of SureShade sunshade systems throughout 2014.

      The SureShade Dealer Award and Recognition program is designed to formally recognize top boat dealers for their sales and service efforts throughout the year. Boat dealer performance is evaluated throughout the year on the criteria of sales performance, installation expertise, customer service, co-marketing efforts and private boat owner feedback.

      Siebert Yacht Management, a professional yacht service company and certified Sabre Yachts service center, has demonstrated outstanding sales performance and installation expertise by successfully outfitting over a dozen boats with automated sunshade systems for their clients in 2014. Siebert Yacht Management excelled in helping to meet the growing demand for aftermarket installations of SureShade systems, quickly responding to field service calls and completing installations on boat brands like Sabre, Back Cove and Beneteau.

      Siebert Yacht Management has also excelled in co-marketing efforts throughout 2014, from including the SureShade logo on service vehicles to creating demo videos of installations.

      “In the last few years SureShade has grown to become a significant part of our yacht services business as more and more boaters want to incorporate their sunshade systems aftermarket,” said John Siebert, president of Siebert Yacht Management. “It’s been a pleasure to support SureShade’s market growth by ensuring truly aesthetic integrations on boats throughout Florida.”

      “Siebert Yacht Management has been an invaluable partner for over 4 years,” said Dana Russikoff, SureShade business leader and co-founder. “We know we can always count on Jay and his team to deliver quality work as they help us meet the growing demand for our shade installations in the busy Florida boating market. We look forward to continuing to grow our business relationship with Jay in Florida and beyond.”

      The SureShade Dealer Award Program is open to all U.S., Canadian and International boat dealers involved in the sale or installation of SureShade retractable sunshade systems. Dealers are also encouraged to take advantage of available boat dealer service and support resources that guide them through the product introduction, design, pricing, sales and installation process. Additional resources are also available for customized marketing support by boat brand and style.

      To learn more about the annual dealer award program, including past dealer award winners, visit http://sureshade.com/sureshade-dealer-award-program.



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