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Moth USA
October 2001

As you know the class was active until the Laser came on the scene in the '70s. Mothing as we know it stopped, only to rise again from the dead in 1990 in its original form (i.e. the 1928 rules). Hence the "Classic Moth" was born, and continues today as a development class, albeit with the original 1928 sail plan (15' luff , and 9' foot). The class is active, and the racers are enthusiastic, although at this year's nationals they couldn't give away the junior trophy because the youngest skipper was 24, and the next was 42! This should give you a snapshot of the action.

Scott Sandell in his Moth.

In the late '90s the U.S. Modern Moth morphed out of the IMCA Moth. There are a handful of Mothists who just don't buy the "Classic" program, and we have spun off to do something a little bit different. There have been several serious attempts at getting the narrow boats going (including one I still have scars from!), but most of our fleet are larger guys (and in our extremely late thirties, or we remember the Kennedy assassination). Many of the Modern racers also like the idea of being able to convert their boats to race as a Classic because there is a good deal of quality competition available. So what we have is mostly a fleet of wide skiffs, where in 2002 an asymmetrical spinnaker will be class legal (the sail is unmeasured, and will be flown off a 5' bowsprit, and can be hoisted no higher than the top of the mainsail). There was some debate about the chute issue, however at this moment only two narrow boats are active, and the majority preferred the wide skiff with the chute.

I think we should stay in close contact with IMCA, as we are certainly interested and supportive, however committed to a slightly different direction. I am certain that we will have some exciting sailing in 2002, but perhaps at a slightly slower pace than those of you who will elevate themselves with foils. On a personal note, I am not in favor of the foils because I think it distances the Moth even further from being a "dinghy". However, in the same breath I have to say who cares! The Moth has always done its own thing, and certainly should continue in that direction, foiled or otherwise.


Scott Sandell