Like many lasers fleets everywhere, we are a collection of people of all ages (15 – 60ish), both sexes, and divergent sailing backgrounds. We all share our enthusiasm for the boat and for the sport of sailboat racing; old dogs and young pups alike are continually learning to be better laser sailors. We have grown the number of home based lasers to twenty-one and welcome a couple of semi-regular visitors.
We sail on Lake Massapoag in Sharon, Massachusetts. The lake is a mile long and about one half mile wide and offers the finest in shifty lake sailing. We launch from the Massapoag Yacht Club, and this club organizes and supports most of our racing activities. Get directions here.
We host several different kinds of races from April to October:
- Wednesday Nights – (7:00pm) One traditional 30 - 45 minute fleet race. Two starts, one for Flying Scots, Daysailers, and similar sized boats, and one for Lasers and Sunfish. Handicap scoring.
- Thursday Nights – (6:30pm) As many as possible (before dark) 10 minute, very informal races. Usually there is one warm-up fleet race followed by team racing. Teams, and sometimes rules, are made up on the spot by competitors. Sunfish are included, sometimes within the Laser start, sometimes with their own start. No scoring.
- Saturday Afternoons – (3:00pm) As many as possible 10 minute fleet races within a two hour time frame. Lasers only. No scoring.
- Sunday Afternoons – (1:00pm) Two traditional 40 – 50 minute fleet races. Three starts- Flying Scots, Daysailers, and Lasers and Sunfish combined. Handicap scoring, but there is usually only one Sunfish.
- Laser / Sunfish Regatta – Saturday, late June (June 27, 2009). Full day regatta with approximately seven 30 minute races. Lasers and Sunfish have separate starts. Fleet scoring.
- MYC Annual Regatta – Saturday and Sunday, early mid-September (September 12 – 13, 2009). Two day, multi-class regatta with six 40 – 50 minute races. Separate starts for Flying Scots, Daysailers, Lasers, and Sunfish. Fleet scoring.
For detailed schedule, click here.
Although there have always been a couple of Lasers on the lake, the fleet really began about five years ago through a wonderful confluence of events and situations:
- Old guys watched junior racers in Sunfish having fun and decided to try a “large people in small boats” Wednesday night race.
- A diehard Sunfish racer began racing in Wednesday and Sunday races establishing a presence for small boats in club racing.
- High school kids with lasers or access to lasers from the local Recreation Department began racing on Wednesdays and Sundays.
- Juniors who had raced Sunfish discovered Lasers were more exciting.
- Old guys had trouble getting crew for their larger boats and discovered Laser sailing was more fun anyway.