FORTY YEARS AGO/ FIFTY YEARS AGO

Forty years ago about this date we towed to Newport for the start of the selection trials to defend the America’s Cup.

We had had a small regatta in Marblehead over the Memorial day weekend in which “Courageous” was faster on every point of sail. Reggie Pierce looked up from the grinder handles and quipped: “It’s going to be a long summer”. Those words proved to be prophetic.

“Independence” was supposed to be the anointed defender. The rest is history.

“Intrepid” will celebrate 50 years.

INDEPENDENCE CREW 1977
COURAGEOUS CREW 1977
LOOKING BACK AT COURAGEOUS
COURAGEOUS ON OUR WEATHER HIP
TRIMMED IN HARD
BERNADETTE WINS THE AMERICA’S CUP AT THE DOG TRACK
AMERICA’S DEMITASSE 1977
MEASURING THE 12’S

THE AMERICA’S CUP JUBILEE

I had the great privilege to sail “Columbia” the first twelve meter to defend the America’s Cup in 1958. at the America’s Cup Jubilee. There were 38 twelve meters there. This was a celebration of the 150th anniversary of the America’s Cup.

The idea of the Royal Yacht Squadron, from my prospective it exceeded all expectations. It was an endless parade of yachts each more beautiful and graceful the the next.

12 METER RACING IN SAN FRANCISCO BAY ?

It will be interesting to see if this idea gains traction.
Bold plan to return America’s Cup style racing to San Francisco
by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com NZL May 7, 2015, 19:28:00 (EDT)

12 metres racing in the 1983 America’s Cup. Australia II is covered by Liberty in Race 1 of the 1983 America’s Cup

There will be smiles around San Francisco Bay with the announcement that America’s Cup style racing is set to return to the venue of the 34th America’s Cup.

A bold plan by Tom Ehman, whose experience with the Cup dates back to 1977, will see racing resume on an annual basis in updated 12 Metre yachts – which were the preferred Cup class from 1956 to 1987.

The new event will reflect the true spirity of the America’s Cup Deed of Gift, with competition being between yacht club teams comprised only of nationals from that club’s country.

The new event is being masterminded by Tom Ehman who is currently the Vice Commodore of the Golden Gate Yacht Club, the body charged under the 19th century Deed of Gift, which governs the conduct of the America’s Cup, with the organisation of the 35th America’s Cup.

The America’s Cup Events Authority is the body responsible under the Protocol for the organisation of the next Match, but it created a great deal of angst amongst the San Francisco sailing fraternity when it decided not to Defend in its home waters, and took the Cup Defence to Bermuda.

That frustration has spawned the new event, coupled with the desire of San Francisco sailors to maintain their place on the international sailing vista.

Unlike the America’s Cup the new San Francisco event will carry half a million dollars in prizemoney, and will be a lot lower costs of entry, with a figure of $1million being touted as the annual cost to run a team.

The benefit for sponsors is that they will get annual exposure for their outlay, as opposed to the once every three/four years with the current Cup plus what can be obtained from the America’s Cup World Series – a three day event which will be sailed three times this year, and with only three venues announced for 2016

Speaking with Associated Press, Ehman said he envisions the Golden Gate Challenge as the Wimbledon of yacht racing in that it will be held every year at the same venue. Unlike the America’s Cup, all teams will be challengers, meaning they’ll start on equal footing each year.

To be named the Golden Gate Yacht Racing Challenge, the new event is being launched at a time when many in the sailing world have questioned the vision for the 35th America’s Cup of Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts, which has so far lost two of its Challengers of Record in the first 18 months of the 35th America’s Cup cycle.

Ehman said he hopes to attract team owners who have been priced out of the America’s Cup or turned off by recent turmoil.

‘This is an opportunity to do something for the sport and the former cup community,’ Ehman said from San Francisco.

Ehman told Bernie Wilson of the Associated Press that he’s working to secure event sponsors and teams.

‘I think this is the best venue in the world for showcasing yacht racing and that was shown in the last cup,’ he said. ‘There’s a crying need in the world of yacht racing for such an event, especially in monohulls and especially in a lot of breeze. We’re seeing that because of what’s happening or not happening in other parts of the sport and in other parts of the world.’

The move is sure to raise the hackles of the America’s Cup Events Authority, a privately owned company charged by the Golden Gate Yacht Club with the commercial and event management activities surrounding the 35th America’s Cup, now removed to Bermuda.

Technically Ehman is part of a management structure to which ACEA reports, however his position is also understood to be voluntary, and ACEA would have few options open to shut down this new initiative or Ehman’s involvement in promoting a new sailing event in a venue deserted by ACEA.

Ehman remains vice commodore of the Golden Gate Yacht Club, which is the America’s Cup trustee. He said his regatta is not affiliated with the GGYC and won’t compete with the America’s Cup. It is believed the new event will be hosted by all Bay area yacht clubs, and existing facilities will be used for team bases

‘I think the America’s Cup is off on its own and always has been,’ Ehman said. ‘The America’s Cup will survive the current situation. There is obviously strong interest in monohull racing with strong teams, in boats everyone has heard of and loves. There is a nostalgia and romance with the 12-meters, and to have those boats racing in a lot of breeze on San Francisco Bay where people can watch it, it will remind people of how great the America’s Cup was in Fremantle in 1987 in windy conditions in 12s.’

Ehman told AP that he’s having designers look at modernizing the 12s and hopes to keep the cost below $3 million per boat. All boats would have the same hull shape, which would make the regatta a test of sailing skill rather than a design competition, helping to hold down costs.

12 METER CLASS 1958-1986

I have been working making short videos lately. I have made others that have nothing to do with sailing. Sailing is what people expect to find here.

SAILING THROUGH LIFE

This is in response to those who asked:”Who are you?” It is a least a dimension.Boats have always been a part of my life. Naturally interwoven with the story of Newport.

1964 / 1974 CUP DEFENDERS, TALES OF THE PAST

A reunion of the crews from 1964 and 1974 America’s Cup defenders was a wonderful event filled with tales of the past. All made possible by Jimmy Gubelmann, as I like to call him the glue that binds. I heard stories that I had not heard before and a few I knew.

Mariner, Courageous, Intrepid, Valiant were represented from 1974 and Constellation and American Eagle from 1964.

TALES OF THE PAST
TALES OF THE PAST
INTREPID
INTREPID
BOB BAVIER, TED HOOD, JACK SUTPHEN, COURAGEOUS 1974
BOB BAVIER, TED HOOD, JACK SUTPHEN, COURAGEOUS 1974
AMERICAN EAGLE
AMERICAN EAGLE
CONSTELLATION 1964
CONSTELLATION 1964
MARINER 1974
MARINER 1974
COURAGEOUS 1974
COURAGEOUS 1974
THE MAN WHO MADE IT POSSIBLE, JIM GUBELMANN
THE MAN WHO MADE IT POSSIBLE, JIM GUBELMANN
HOMMAGE TO BUDDY BOMBARD
HOMMAGE TO BUDDY BOMBARD
DICK ENERSEN
DICK ENERSEN
RICH DUMOULIN
RICH DUMOULIN
LESTER ABBERLEY HANS ISBRANDTSEN
LESTER ABBERLEY HANS ISBRANDTSEN
1964/1974 AT STATION 10
1964/1974 AT STATION 10
PERFECT NIGHT
PERFECT NIGHT

THE QUIET MAN

TED AND TEDDY
TED AND TEDDY
MARBLEHEAD COLD AND RICK HOOD
MARBLEHEAD COLD AND RICK HOOD
STILL COLD
STILL COLD
TED HOOD ON INDEPENDENCE
TED HOOD ON INDEPENDENCE
LOOKING FROM OFF THE BOAT
LOOKING FROM OFF THE BOAT
COURAGEOUS 1974
COURAGEOUS 1974

Ted Hood passed away this summer. I was traveling and did not have access to me archive of photographs. For me he will always be the quiet man; after nearly a year of sailing on the same boat we only ever exchanged a handful of words. He was a clever man that mostly saw the whole picture and must have have exceptional three dimensional vision. He could make a boat go fast, however, I believe match racing did not fit his personality.

TED HOOD 1927-2013

A twilight sun cuts though the clouds,
Shining down on wind swept seas,
Where one man forever longs to be,
Facing the wind and sailing free.

But he settles not for meaningless miles,
Fast through the waves, to his face brings a smile,
So down on his knees, to work and to sweat,
To try and to test, new ideas to perfect.

From all of this came a bird swiftly flying,
Or a fish gently gliding, and a man who belongs,
In the hearts of us all, especially mine,
For he somehow found time, to bring me along.

The sport of sailing, and the boating world at large, lost an icon over the weekend with the passing of Frederick E. “Ted” Hood on June 28. Hood, who was born in Beverly, Mass., on May 5, 1927, was a longtime member of the New York Yacht Club, joining in 1960. He was 86 years old. [Please note memorial information below]

“Ted was such an important part of the heritage of the New York Yacht Club,” said New York Yacht Club Commodore Thomas Harrington, “And he’ll be sorely missed.”

Hood, who grew up in Marblehead, Mass., was a complete sailor. He started his career as a sailmaker, and when he couldn’t find sailcloth to his standards, he built a loom and started making his own. He then branched out into yacht design and construction. He was also a remarkable innovator when it came to sailing gear and technique. He is credited with the grooved headstay, roller furling, and the dip-pole jibe, among other things. And, of course, through it all, he was a superlative skipper. His signature performance on the water was a 4-0 win in the 1974 America’s Cup, driving Courageous. But he was a dominant force in ocean racing for decades, winning races from the SORC to Marblehead Halifax, usually at the helm of one of his many boats namedRobin. His record puts him on par with any of the top skippers of his generation, or any generation. His understated, gentlemanly manner may have contributed to his accomplishments being overshadowed by those of more outspoken sailors.

“Ted Hood lived in a time when specialties were not the norm,” said New York Yacht Club Vice Commodore Rives Potts, a veteran of the 12-Metre era of the America’s Cup. “He was the most forward-thinking, the most complete yachtsman of that generation, and maybe of generations to come. Nowadays, we have guys who are excellent helmsmen, or tacticians, or bowmen or are good yacht designers or sailmakers. Or maybe a good yard manager. Ted Hood was all of those and more.”

In the mid-1980s, Hood sold his sailmaking business and focused on boat design and construction. He purchased the Melville Boat Basin, in Portsmouth, R.I., from the government and built the Ted Hood Marine Complex. Little Harbor Yachts, which he started in the 1960s, was initially a sailboat company. But as the market for sailboats softened and the demand for powerboats increased, he shifted his focus. He was among the first to embrace jet drive propulsion for power boats. He sold the company to Hinckley Yachts in 1999. Soon after he started Ted Hood Yachts, which has a broad line of ocean-going poweryachts and motorsailers.

According to a biography posted at tedhood.com, he was refining and improving his designs right into his last days.

Memorial information: In honor of Frederick E. “Ted” Hood (May 5, 1927 – June 28, 2013), the Hood family cordially invites all he has touched to a celebration of his life to be held at New York Yacht Club’s Harbour Court, Newport, RI on Friday, September 20 at 11 a.m. Parking at the Club may be limited; overflow parking will be available on Wellington Ave. Carpooling where possible is encouraged, as is arriving early. All are welcome to stay for refreshments and to share stories following the service.