The priceless trophies of life

Published on October 17th, 2023

The Star Class was founded in 1911, and competed in 19 Olympic Games from 1932 to 2012. Class boats that compete at such an elite arena tend to suffer at the fleet level, but this 23-foot keelboat continues to attract attention from both ends of the spectrum.

It also attracts people that give back, as the elite competitors in sailing aren’t typically the ones that help administer the sport, but Hall of Famer Paul Cayard has taken on that role as President of the International Star Class. Here’s his view from the chair:

The Star class today is a wide and diverse community. We sail on five continents, in 35 countries with 1700 active members. We have three great boat builders in Europe with a 4th coming soon in South America. We have had a very loyal Italian mast builder for over 30 years and recently a new one in Canada. Sailmakers all over the World want to make sails for the Star.

The best sailors in the World compete in our World and Continental Championships. Yet the heart and soul of the class lives on lakes in Germany and Austria and Michigan, in the small clubs and local fleets. Our future is in the hands of our growing U30 sailors. We must nurture and mentor them just like the previous generation mentored us.

Sailing is a sport; it is for fun and friendship and camaraderie, which are the priceless trophies of life. Thanks to great leadership for over 100 years, Star sailors today have so much to be grateful for. Now we, the current custodians of the World’s greatest class of sailboat, have much to do. Like life, the Star class is a journey that is in constant evolution.

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