Ceew Position

When short handed the first position to leave empty is a Mast Man, than Mainsail Trimmer


Racing Boat Maneuvers

There are 5 basic boat maneuvers while racing;
(Click on a maneuver to see its detail's description)


it is important that each crew member knows the locations and how to operate all of the following:

  • Halyards
  • Spinnaker topping lift and downhaul
  • Main sheet
  • Winches
  • Lifejackets
  • Rgging knife
  • Bolt cutters and toolbox
  • First aid kit
  • Flares
  • Radio, Loran, GPS
  • Battery
  • Eectrical panel
  • Anchor(s) and rode
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Engine and know where is a key




Spinnaker Hoist

When you are close to the mark the spinnaker bag is attached to the lifelines on the port side of the boat near the bow (for starboard set, the opposite side of the pole). The 2 clews are attached to the snap shackle ends of the spinnaker sheets. The halyard is taken from the mast and attached to the head of the spinnaker. The halyard must be checked to make sure the halyard is not twisted around the headstay, else the spinnaker won't come down. The lazy jib sheet is then removed from the winch so that the pole can be raised. Working together, the foredecker and pit person raise the spinnaker pole with the topping lift on and the downhaul off. The downhaul is then put on with a few inches of slack. The unused jib winch is then prepared with the guy (two turns around the winch and insert a winch handle). The spinnaker sheet is then prepared on the jib halyard winch. When the skipper calls for "Pre-feed the Guy", the pit person pulls the end of the spinnaker clew to the end of the spinnaker pole by pulling on the guy while the foredecker opens the bag. When the skipper calls "Hoist", the mast man pulls the spinnaker halyard as fast as he can. In the mean time, the jib trimmer has cleated off the jib sheet and starts to trim the spinnaker sheet. The mainsail trimmer eases the main sheet, traveler and backstay. The pit person releases the jib halyard while the foredecker pulls down the sail and secures it to the deck. The mast man eases the outhaul and cunningham while the pit person eases the main halyard. The hoist is complete when the foredecker and mast man move to the middle and the back of the boat when they are done with their duties. At this point either the foredecker or mast man will relieve the pit person from trimming the guy.


While sailing is one of the safest sports around, nobody should underestimate the force of a sailboat and her rig in moderate to strong winds. Keep the following in mind:

  • Always snub a line under load around a winch or cleat.
  • Stay away from all moving objects-booms, poles, jib clews, traveller cars, winch handles
  • Don't step in the V formed by a line running to and from a turning block.
  • Don't sit where a line or block may hit you if something breaks.
  • Don't try to do 2-man jobs by yourself.
  • Keep all lines coiled and neat.
  • Don't assume that a shipmate is performing his end of a job until you actually see him do it.
  • When trimming a halyard, sheet or any other line, always look at the object it is connected to.

Clothes/Foul Weather Gear/Sail Gloves

It is important that crew have warm clothes and shoes for cold water racing. On cold, wet days bring a spare set of dry clothes and shoes to change into after the race. Foul weather gear is also important.

Race Committee Boat Duty

Each boat will take its turn as race committee boat. The race commitee boat is the boat that starts and finishes races. It takes 4 people to do a good race committee boat job. Please volunteer to help with Committe Boat duty as the skipper can not do this job alone. Details for performing CB duty is found here.

Make Sure You Have Fun

Racing is an intense sport. Sometimes yelling occurs-don't take it personally. We really are out there to have fun (and win)! We try to socialize too! After the race we usualy go to a local pub or sit onboard and analyze the race.

Confused by Sail Language

If you have never sailed, this document has probably been very confusing. Don't worry you'll learn it. To get started on "sailing as a second language" see the attached glossary of important sailing terms.

Want More Sailing Info?

Go to the library! There are lots of books, magazines and videos on sailing. Or surf the web and see what you can find.