One thing I've noticed as I've aged.... there is that one particular class you sailed as a youngster (probably either crewing with Dad and then branching out, or even learning to sail, as in an El Toro pram), that one sailboat class of your youth has put a hammerlock on you for the rest of your life. Many return to that class and continue racing in it, becoming the wizened veteran competitor. Some of us move on to other boats. Still, we hold those memories; those sweet, sweet memories of a carefree summer of our youth and of glorious regattas in days gone by.
The Y Flyer scow is that sailboat class for me. I ran into Naval Academy midshipman Josh (skipper of the Academy's Farr 53 "TomCat") who it turns out, sailed Y Flyers on Chippewa Lake, Ohio. I sailed Y Flyers on Berlin Lake, about an hours drive away and though our time in Y Flyers is separated by more than 30 years, when two sailors share the love of the same sailboat, the stories come flowing out.
Josh's Dad and other fleet members from Chippewa have been building wooden Y Flyers. The Y Flyer class has been mostly fiberglass, even back in the ancient past when I was sailing (Bob Turner built a wood Y back in my era, we ran in the same crowd in Annapolis in our twenties, but today our paths cross every once in a Blue Moon).
The Y Flyer is a great scow class. I'll devote another post to wax lyrical about the boat (I know, I know, all small boat sailors can pontificate endlessly about the virtues of their particular class ..... but this is my blog.)
Many sailors on the East Coast have no clue what a Y Flyer looks like so I've lifted some pictures from El Fraser over at his Y Flyer blog. Click on the pic for a larger image.
Also, this somewhat humorous YouTube gives good top down view of a Y Flyer (inadvertently).
6 hours ago