Taming the talent

Most Seahorse readers know of legendary America’s Cup helmsman Charlie Barr. Fewer will be aware how much that level of competitiveness on the water needed channelling in order to deliver the required results. John Rousmaniere

There were three motivations for me to write a short history of the New York Yacht Club Race Committee. First, although a beneficiary of race committees for many years, I have long considered them to be mysterious. Second, I was intrigued by a request to contribute to a project honouring the club’s 175th anniversary this year.

As for the third, I’ve long been nagged by a yachting history mystery. On one day in 1901 the boat sailed by Charlie Barr, one of the very greatest racing sailors, was disqualified from the final race of the America’s Cup defender trials – and yet on the next day he and his boat were chosen to defend the Cup, which they did successfully in one of the closest matches in Cup history.

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