Saturday, April 9, 2011

Why not race your Alberg 30

Historically the most famous race was Aesop’s tale of the Tortoise and the Hare. But that was a race between unequal participants.

To put it simply, in sailboat racing there are three types of racing sailboats: the One design (i.e. Alberg); the Restricted design, i.e. vessels built under the Universal and International Rule; and the Open Class with boats of different design with handicaps.

In open class races, to be real fun it often becomes a matter of outbuilding the other fellow. So often the trophies being given to the person with the biggest pocketbook. Matching pennies and working at the other guys bankroll.

One of the joys my family had in the 1970s, was class racing with the Alberg 30s, both on Lake Ontario and in the Chesapeake Bay area. And one great Alberg race at Newport R.I. in 1980. This was the best of racing because all the boats were built in the same mold, and were identical, Of course they are not absolutely identical to the smallest detail .

From the spectators point of view there is no comparison, seeing about 12 or more vessels, heading to the starting line with the same wind, the same sea, and the same mechanical equipment. From the skippers point of view he gets the maximum competition per dollar of expenditure.

When Mandy decided that we should buy Odyssey instead of a new ultra design racing-cruising design, The Alberg was outdated, there not having been any change in the hull design, or the sail plan, in nearly` 10 years.

Well now the Alberg is ?? years old, and still no change in the hull design or the sail plan, and for one design racing, she is still a beautiful and competitive one design sailing vessel

One remarkable feature of the Alberg is that they still maintain their value. Some of the older boats were considered to be crude and unfinished compared to the newer vessels, (no’s 400 and up) but the evolution was gradual, and the owners of the older boats had no problems in keeping pace with the new boats. Odyssey #253, was an older boat, and is now considered one of the finest vessels on Lake Michigan.

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