by David Schmidt

David Schmidt, a SAIL editor-at-large, is a recent transplant to the Pacific Northwest from SAIL's Boston offices

Maxi-yacht construction in the United States has been pretty anemic since the Great Recession. But with the economy on the mend and the S&P 500’s record-crushing 29.6 percent uptick in 2013, there now appear to be some “green shoots” out there

2014 Pittman Innovation Awards

by Adam Cort, Posted February 26, 2014
Sailing has always been a technology-driven activity, and the spirit of innovation that prompted the first Stone Age sailor to cast off and let the wind do the work remains as vibrant today as ever. 
Nathanael G. Herreshoff didn’t (necessarily) mean to spark a yacht-design revolution when he launched the catamaran Amaryllis in 1875, but that’s exactly what happened…eventually.
Gus Hancock, 73, of Chicago, began sailing with his father in an Old Town canoe in 1950. A deserted beach, a tarp and a campfire were their accommodations during early cruises on Barnegat Bay before they garage-built a 16-foot wooden daysailer. Offshore adventures followed, including Newport-Bermuda races and cruises to the Bay of Fundy in the 1960s. In 1970, Gus crewed on a Cal 37 in the Los Angeles to Tahiti Transpac Race and spent the summer cruising Tahiti, the Tuamotus, the Marquesas and Hawaii.
Although flush-deck sliding foredeck hatches are great for quickly launching and retrieving kites, they have typically been prone to leak because of the difficulty in creating proper seals around them—until now. Among the many innovative features aboard the new McConaghy 38 one-design sloop is a pneumatic seal for the offset (port side) sliding hatch that has an inflatable “bladder” encircling the hatch aperture to keep the wet out. 
Rare is the sailing resume that boasts 217,928 miles, three circumnavigations, multiple voyages through the Arctic and Antarctic and the first east-west crossing of the Northwest Passage by an American-flagged sailboat.
When I was 11, my Dad, his buddies and I sailed Wind Dancer, his C&C 37, from Long Island Sound to Chesapeake Bay. It was my second offshore passage.
“I always put the fear of God into people that this is the world’s third-largest barrier reef,” says Capt. Joe Dyll of the western Florida Keys, which have long been one of his favorite cruising grounds.
When Dr. Seuss wrote these words, he must have had cruisers on his mind. Rare is the cruiser who doesn’t dream of sailing over the horizon, of exploring remote areas.
Rather than junior sailing lessons, David Tunick, 68, of New York City, learned sailing by “on-the-job” experience. While his family drove powerboats, he and a friend bought a Lightning in 1966 and started “sleeping-bag cruising.”
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