“Talking Sailing” From My Archives. An Era Recalled

A classic shot of the schooner Westward. pic by Beken of Cowes

By Richard Crockett

I liked this feature in SA Yachting mag in October 1985 not due to the magnificent pics of the old J-boats Westward and others, but to a large degree due to the introductory paragraph which read as follows:

“Apple Macintosh took line honours in the South Atlantic Race and was the cynosure
of all eyes. Representing that new class referred to as the “maxis”, this fine yacht, with the aid of all sorts of mechanical and electronic devices, computer programming and push-button navigation, is capable of thrilling performances. But one cannot help but recall with nostalgia another breed of maxis – the great racing schooners and cutters of an age leading up to the ultimate in competitive machines, the J-boats.

“The modern maxi would look rather cute alongside one of these thundering giants. West ward, 323 tons and a complement of 27 sailors, Britannia, 212 ton Thames measurement, a mainsail of 5 165 square feet and a main boom 92 feet long. The very names read like poetry – Endeavour, Astra, Velsheda, Yankee, Candida’ Shamrock, Lulworth, White Heather.

“Apple Macintosh! Really!”

It’s a great read with absolutely stunning pics from an era past.

READ IT HERE:  Pages from 1985 10 – SA Yachting – 0OCR

J-boats all in a line. 7 – Zinita , 1 – Britannia, 5 – Westward. pic by Beken of Cowes

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