Wayfarer Study Notes
all the Wayfarer stuff you need to know
in abbreviated form as collected
by Derwyn Hughes

Al's introduction: Derwyn is one of Canada's best and most enthusiastic Wayfarer racers. He will introduce what he has done for us (below). His work filled about 12 pages of the February 1995 Whiffle, and what I have done here is split it up into several segments, the first of which follows this introduction.

November 13, 1994: Much of this material was taken from four great videos on Wayfarer sailing (available from the Canadian Wayfarer Association). These were prepared by Al Schönborn, W3854, (many times Canadian Champion and Class Coach) with the help of Mike McNamara. W8868, World Wayfarer Champion 1992 from UK.  Thanks to George Lake, W862, for lending me the set of videos. Further revisions have been made after "spying" on the Eastern Canada/USA fleets during regattas in the summer of 1994. Hope you find some of this helpful in sailing your Wayfarer. Any suggestions you may have for improving these notes would be appreciated. Contact me as shown below. Have fun & enjoy your sailing!

Derwyn Hughes W4615, 143 Silvercrest Crescent, Calgary, Alberta T3B 3T8

Priorities for racing success
1. an enthusiastic and positive crew/helm relationship
2. on-the-water experience
3. sail trim and boat handling
4. preparing the mast, hull, rigging and foils
5. knowledge of rules and tactics

Basic boat handling tips

  • Keep the boat flat. (In very light air, a slight leeward lean will help to keep sail shape and reduce wetted surface area.)
  • Trim all sails so that they luff evenly from top to bottom.
  • Do not oversheet the sails.
  • Normally keep crew weight together at the center of the side deck.
  • Crew weight forward in light air.
  • Crew weight aft when planing in strong winds to keep the bow up.
  • It rarely pays to tack downwind on runs in a Wayfarer.
  • Use crew weight to help turn the boat. Hike to windward to bear off for a gybe. Move to leeward to head up
  • Adjust crew position, sail trim and centerboard to get a balanced rudder on all points of sail.  (Think of the rudder as a big brake!)
  • Try to maintain a positive relationship with your helmsperson or crew!
Hope you find some of this helpful in sailing your Wayfarer.