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View Poll Results: What Percent of Sailboat Owners are Racers (primarily)?
10% 18 33.33%
20% 11 20.37%
30% 8 14.81%
40% 5 9.26%
50% 5 9.26%
60% 3 5.56%
70% 1 1.85%
80% 1 1.85%
90% 2 3.70%
Voters: 54. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 31-10-2015, 11:46   #16
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

Current poll results with 18 votes:
10% 7 38.89%
20% 4 22.22%
30% 3 16.67%
40% 2 11.11%
50% 1 5.56%
60% 0 0%
70% 0 0%
80% 0 0%
90% 1 5.56%

Highest category is 10%, with the median at 20%.

I must admit that's way lower than I expected! On a typical fall weekend counting boats I see out, 20 to 40 are in a race, and the number of sailboats out not in a race are about 5 to 10. Maybe racers get out more frequently though, or more frequently in the cruising off season? (for regions that have an off season) Or they're just more visible.
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Old 31-10-2015, 11:46   #17
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

OK, I'll bite again.

Here's the difficulties of asking this kind of question.

You're limited to the people reading this forum. Guess the guys who never use their boats don't read it either.

Race boats can be identified a mile away.

Cruising boats, like mine, do race. My compatriots with the same boat (1,801 made from 1986 to 2009) were made identically except for the choice of inside or both inside and outside tracks. From my humble boat with only inside tracks, there are now vast differences in gear: adjustable track cars, whisker poles, etc. But if I looked at them at the dock, unless I knew the skipper, I couldn't tell whether he raced or whether he was just a cruiser who bought the adjustable cars because he likes good sail trim.

Who's to say the Ericson 32 or the Islander 30 down the dock don't race? I don't know the skippers and don't follow them when they take their boats out. Beneteaus? Other than some of the First series and the 28.5s up in Wisconsin, I have never seen a Beneteau racing here on SF Bay. Maybe I missed one or two... My dock neighbor with his First 38.7 daysails, singlehanded, and never races. He told me so.

Of our 1,801 boats, there are 50 here on SF Bay in our fleet plus maybe that many or twice more who haven't joined it. We have 700 members in our International Society, so I have a pretty good handle on what they do, since I'm the secretary of the association.

Maybe a dozen or two of all those boats race.

That said, if you look at the racing scene in Wisconsin Lakes, the number of boats out racing is astounding. The changing dynamics of sailing clubs | SailboatOwners.com Forums

So lots can be said for location, location, location.

While I recognize the "interest" in the feedback you may glean from your question, I still wonder what it means to begin with. What's the purpose, and what could be gained from getting even the perfect answer?
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Old 31-10-2015, 11:56   #18
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tessellate View Post
You think people buying boats exclusively for racing is so low as 1%? That's way different than what I would guess. A lot of new boat designs and brokerage boats seem designed very much so for racing.

The Farr 30 world championships just recently took place in our area. I have a hard time believing someone buying a Farr 30 or J/105 isn't buying it primarily for racing. When you say "exclusively" maybe you meant 100% of the time? On that I agree, people rarely buy boats exclusively for any one purpose - but the question is primarily (what is their majority intent), not 100%.
With questions like this I suppose Google is your friend. What are the annual sales of Farrs + J boats compared to all other (cruising) boats. Or what is the percentage of registered/documented Farrs + J boats of all registered/documented sailboats?

I suspect those are very low numbers.
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Old 31-10-2015, 12:09   #19
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

I don't think the question can truly be answered ... I have a traditional style boat based on the hull design of Tom Gilmer's 'Blue Moon'. With a 19'-8" LWL it is limited to approx 5 knots so it certainly wouldn't qualify as a race boat, and yet I agree with both Malyea and Jrbogie in that, as soon as another sail hove's in sight, the race is on ... at least in my cockpit. It's the nature of most sailors I do believe.
My previous boat was a 24' C&C built Shark. designed as a family cruiser and clubhouse racer. It almost became an Olympic contender in its time. The boat had a planing hull and would, under the right conditions and crew, sail for long periods of time at 10 Knots plus.
I loved that boat and the excitement it provided me. Unfortunately, my wife did not enjoy racing (sez it turned me into a Cap'n Bligh) and so I had to decide if I wanted to race 'alone', or cruise with my sweetie. Cruising won out. I still miss the thrill of the Shark, but at 82 years of age, I have to admit even cruising is getting a bit much of a struggle for me these days.
I have only been in the marina where I keep my boat since August of this year. There are approx 1000 boats, the majority of which are sailboats. The smallest is a 20`Flicka and range upward to about 50`maximum. So far, I have seen very few of these boats leave the dock. Maybe I arrived too late in the season ... I know there is an organised yacht club but I have not made inquiries as to it`s prime purpose although I did see mention of racing on a board in the marina office, but then there was also mention of organised cruises. I`ll have a better understanding of what goes on next season ... the good Lord willing.
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Old 31-10-2015, 12:10   #20
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tessellate View Post
You think people buying boats exclusively for racing is so low as 1%? That's way different than what I would guess. A lot of new boat designs and brokerage boats seem designed very much so for racing.

The Farr 30 world championships just recently took place in our area. I have a hard time believing someone buying a Farr 30 or J/105 isn't buying it primarily for racing. When you say "exclusively" maybe you meant 100% of the time? On that I agree, people rarely buy boats exclusively for any one purpose - but the question is primarily (what is their majority intent), not 100%.
===

You make a good point. Virtually all of the performance oriented sailboats get used for racing, especially when they are new. It's probably possible to figure out the number of those boats sold vs the overall number of sales and compute a percentage.
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Old 31-10-2015, 13:18   #21
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

All cruisers become racers when there is another boat around
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Old 31-10-2015, 18:25   #22
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

If you like sailboat racing you must love civil litigation. Neither is an occupation for sportsmen.
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Old 31-10-2015, 21:03   #23
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

depends on what you mean. if you mean people who just use their boat to race. I'd say less than 5 percent. if you're talking about people who race as well as cruise. I'd say you're looking at closer to 50 percent.
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Old 31-10-2015, 21:54   #24
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

I did a poll here awhile back. Maybe this will help answer the question although 38 is a pretty small sample size and it doesn't specifically address how many people purchase a boat primarily to race it:


How many racers on CF?
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Old 31-10-2015, 22:11   #25
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

I wish you had a "0" category...If I'm going to race it will be on a 1/2 mile oval track on a motorcycle without brakes.
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Old 31-10-2015, 23:52   #26
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

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Marina del Rey has 5200 slips. Granted many of them are power boats but the majority are sailboats.

The CYC's summer beer can series is one of the most popular racing venues and I'd estimate total participation in all 8 classes to be somewhere between 60 and 80 boats.

Long Beach Shoreline + Alamitos Bay totals approximately 4000 slips with similar participation for the SBYC summer series.

You do the math...

And if the question is, "what percentage purchase a boat to use exclusively for racing?", my answer would be somewhere between 1% and infinitesimal.

This is the truth of it.

It may be as high as 5% if you include dingy sailing but otherwise boats purchased primarily as racers is pretty negligible.

If you read sailing magazines, you will see them over represented as they spend a lot of money and they make the sport look sexy. Not too different than car magazines giving a false impression that everyone drives sports or muscle cars or jacked up pickup trucks. When you actually get out on the road most people drive boring sedans because they are better suited to their needs.
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Old 01-11-2015, 06:35   #27
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

I live by the motto: One boat is a cruise, two boats is a race.
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Old 01-11-2015, 07:03   #28
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

At our local boat yard right now there are 3 flat out racing sailboats with 7'-8' keels with the bulb at the bottom, vertical bow, etc.

The other 15-18 boats are some sort of cruiser/ (racer?)

But a cruiser/ racer could never compete with a true racing sailboat unless it was a say very long distance race where the cruiser/racer might find a different wind
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Old 01-11-2015, 07:19   #29
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

Lots of people own horses but what percentage own racehorses?

Lots of people own fast cars - porsches, corvettes, and the like - but what percentage of people actually take them to the track and race them, even as amateurs.

Lots of people own tennis rackets or golf clubs but how many purchase them with the primary intent of competing in tournaments? They might compete on occasion at their club but that is occasionally, not primarily. And they might compete with friends during their game but that to me is like the "if there are two boats on the water it's a race" thing.

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Old 01-11-2015, 19:10   #30
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Re: What Percentage of Sailboat Owners are Racers? (poll)

Both for the C&C
race on the J24
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