by Peter Nielsen

Peter Nielsen is SAIL’s Editor-in-Chief.

Just a few days after it started off the coast of France, the Vendee Globe solo round-the-world race is already living up to its reputation as the ultimate test of sailors and equipment.Battered by huge seas and strong winds in the Bay of Biscay, nine of the 30 starters have either retired or been forced back to the French port of Les Sables d’Olonne for repairs.The race started in

Another Solo Record

by Peter Nielsen, Posted November 12, 2008
The French dominate the world of shorthanded ocean sailing, and the man of the moment among French solo sailors is Francis Joyon.Last winter Joyon became the fastest person to sail single-handed around the world, setting a remarkable time of 57 days, 13 hours, knocking nearly two weeks off the previous record.Last weekend the 52-year-old Frenchman set another record aboard his 97’

When Two Teens Go To Sea

by Peter Nielsen, Posted November 5, 2008
Sixteen-year-old American Zac Sunderland, who’s halfway through his attempt to become the youngest-ever solo circumnavigator, has a rival. British teenager Mike Perham, who is 108 days younger than Zac, is about to set sail from the UK on a fully sponsored Open 50 racer.Mike made headlines in 2007 when he and his father sailed solo from England to Antigua in separate boats. He was just 14

Sailing for Science

by Peter Nielsen, Posted November 5, 2008
Acting on studies showing that ocean ecosystems are seriously threatened, a pair of non-profit organizations are collaborating on a one-year circumnavigation of the Americas aimed at building awareness of the ocean environment.Boston-based Sailors for the Sea, co-founded by David Rockefeller Jr, is dedicated to providing education and resources to boaters to preserve coastal environments.

Spanish Isles

by Peter Nielsen, Posted October 20, 2008
I like Jimi Hendrix, but enough is enough. As the final chords of “All Along the Watchtower” pierced the night air and vanished into the mangroves, I waved goodnight to the rest of the crew and went below. That started an exodus. Ten minutes later the bay was as completely, spookily silent as it had been that afternoon before we steamed in, dropped anchor, popped open some cold ones, fired up the
One of the world’s most prestigious boat brands has changed hands. Oyster Marine, founded by Richard Matthews 35 years ago, has been bought by private equity firm Balmoral Capital. The company already owns the Italian luxury motoryacht builder Canados. Oyster Marine builds a range of luxury yachts from 45 to 125 feet, and its revenues amount to more than $100 million a year. Matthews will remain

Admiral 38

by Peter Nielsen, Posted January 16, 2008
Shhhh, don’t tell Famous Potatoes she’s being included in an article about starter cats. She thinks she’s at least 42 feet long, and she’s about convinced me of it too. The most impressive thing about this boat is her incredibly spacious feel. Owners of larger cats have come aboard and exclaimed,“Wow, you have so much room! What a beautiful boat!”I fell in love with her lines when

Andrews 45

by Peter Nielsen, Posted September 21, 2006
West Coaster Alan Andrews has drawn a long line of fast racing sleds, and with this 45-footer he shows that he can turn his mind to cruising too—fast cruising, that is. The Andrews 45 has pretty though reasonably conventional above-waterline looks, but a peek below the bootstripe reveals a stilettolike spade rudder and deep T-keel that obviously mean business. With just 12 feet, 7 inches of beam,

e33

by Peter Nielsen, Posted March 3, 2006
A sailmaker, a boatbuilder, and a naval architect are standing at a bar having a quiet drink… no, this isn’t yet another incarnation of an old joke. It’s how sailmaker Robbie Doyle explains the genesis of the e33, a collaboration between him, builder Dirk Kneulman, and designer Jeremy Wurmfeld. Talk turned to the declining state of one-design racing and of what type of boat it would take to

Catri 24

by Peter Nielsen, Posted May 31, 2005
Even if you find it difficult to accept the builder’s claim that this little folding trimaran is capable of 30 knots, the Catri 24 is an intriguing boat. Each ama sports a retractable curved daggerboard in its forward section and a fixed V-shaped foil aft. There is also a horizontal foil on the rudder.Designer Aldis Eglajs, from Latvia, claims that the combined effect of these foils is to
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