Fleet Captain: Saunders Ketcham
The K6 fleet at AYC is one of the largest concentrations of small one design sportboats in the U.S., boasting 15 individually-owned boats. The fleet has now completed 10 seasons of racing and enthusiasm remains high with over 60 races per season and new people and boats continuing to join the fleet.
After a yearlong selection process AYC chose the 19-foot K6 as a new one design class for the club in late 2006 based on the boat’s combination of terrific performance, crew versatility, and moderate cost of ownership. The K6 performs well in the light winds of Western Long Island Sound, and yet is a ton of fun when the breeze is up. Importantly, the K6 can be sailed by crews with a wide range of skill since it is relatively easy to control. Most of our fleet sails with two people, but crews of three smaller people are also common and we often have family members sailing together and also women both skippering as well as crewing. The narrow hull and deep keel bulb allows the boat to be sailed by different body types efficiently. This versatility makes it much easier to get boats out to the starting line regularly.
To complement the boat, the fleet at AYC has developed a racing program that is focused on high quality local racing and time efficiency. One can race against 10 or more boats on a regular basis without having to spend an entire weekend to disassemble the boat and trailer it somewhere else. The centerpiece of the schedule is the Sunday Series racing that is held right off Milton Harbor to minimize time wasted sailing to and from the start. Multiple races are started in quick succession, with 4-6 races typically completed in two hours. The Sunday Series is open to non-members and is complemented with starts in multi-class events such as AYC’s HPDO, the Newport Regatta, and certain YRA events. Finally, we also occasionally race with the European K6 fleets and do a boat and crew exchange with various fleets in Europe.