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PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:07 pm 
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Is there any movie or video out there if pro sail series? It would be cool and educational to watch!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 5:09 pm 
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ESPN covered it, but I don't know how much footage there was other than what was on the show. There's probably some buried in somebody's VHS tape library. Gary Jobson might know of some. He was commentator on ESPN, and also tried to pick up my Wife once, before she started crewing for me and was watching from the beach :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 5:25 pm 
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I'm not sure how much you would get from video taken from the beach though. The rules were different. There was no penalty for contact, and overtaking boat had right of way. There were umpires in striped shirts on the course, but they were there for show. They were told not to do anything. Ask Bob Poteat about that.

I learned more about sailing a cat in 20 second bursts during the racing, than could be taught in a book, or even video. I was really looking forward to the next season, but at one of the nightly parties-white tents, food, drink, and good quality live bands, my Wife and I were sitting at the table with the owners of Hobie Cat, and the sponsor's reps from RJ Reynolds. There were packages of Salem cigarettes on all the tables (it was the Salem Prosail Series), and competitors were pushing them away making jokes about smoking. The reps were looking around, and I heard one tell the other one, "This is the healthiest crowd of people I've ever seen. I don't think this is our market." It also happened that the next year was the last of the Winston Cup stock car racing, but I knew when I heard that conversation that it would not last.

It was a shame too. My wife and I had a good sponsorship lined up for the next year, and it was a good possibility that we could have made a living doing just that.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 7:59 pm 
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Tom were the boats designed for the series or vice versa. I heard that when the money dried up so did the production of the 21se.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2014 1:26 pm 
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Location: Bellingham, Washington
An interesting article with a little info on the salem pro series:

http://www.nytimes.com/1988/12/04/sports/yachting-rewards-are-slim-in-sailboat-series.html


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2014 3:48 pm 
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That article was about the last race of the first season. There were three more seasons, but only the next two were really the last good ones. That first season, the spinnakers were all provided, and they were the little round bubble stock ones. The last season RJ Reynolds had pulled the sponsorship money, and the promoters never got it off the ground again.

There were a few people pulling in decent money, but more from sponsors than from prize money, although the prize money was nothing to turn down. It went from 8k for first on the weekend, to maybe 500 for last place. At the end of the season, there were other checks. We were middle of the pack, or a little better, the third year when my Wife crewed for me, and the end of the year check was something like 7,500. You had to qualify on Fridays, and top 20 made the show on the weekend going for the prize money. At that last race of the first season, in that article talking about Miami, there were maybe 45 boats racing to qualify on Friday. By the third year, it was down to the regular top 20 who always qualified anyway, and there was no longer any need for the qualifying races on Friday.

It was great fun though, and even Randy will tell you that it was the most fun he has had racing sailboats. The weekends were big hits in sailing towns, but the interest never really went much farther than that. The races were always on fairly short courses, in close to shore, or where the most spectators could fit.

The boats were not designed for the series. The Formula 40s were kind of heavy cats too, but everyone who sailed those enjoyed them. I got to got out on one on a Friday in Wrightsville Beach, and it was a lot of fun. Both cats were sort of heavy beasts as far as cats go, but it was great one design racing.


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