Sharon Green was reluctant to ‘put up the postponement flag’ on production of her second book – 30 Years of Ultimate Sailing. The retrospective work had consumed the better part of a year: unearthing and revisiting decades of slides, photographs, and digital files; whittling nearly half of a million images into one cohesive tome that would capture the foremost yacht racing action from the 1980s to the present. Even so, the 34th America’s Cup was right around the corner, and instinct told her to wait. Just as a sailing team – with the boat rigged, rabid to race – is dejected when the dreaded AP flag (AKA Pippi Longstocking) is hoisted; Green was deflated.
But that disappointment has turned to delight with the release of the lavish 224-page coffee table book scheduled for October 2014. “I had a funny feeling that we needed to wait and see what the America’s Cup held, when we put the project on hold last year,” Green said. “Thank goodness we did! We didn’t realize America’s Cup 2013 would be so amazing. It was pivotal: including those final images and an essay from Jimmy Spithill in the book has really provided the ‘ultimate’ finale to a thrilling anthology.”
Call it what you will – 30 Years of Ultimate Sailing, or 31 Years … the collection depicts more than three decades of images from the yachting campaigns of greats like John Thomson, John Kilroy, Philippe Kahn, and the late Roy Disney, along with eight America’s Cups. Present-day photographs, such as the AC72s soaring across San Francisco Bay, are contrasted with Green’s first shots taken as a teen – when she ditched her job pumping gas and boxing worms at a gas station in Ontario’s Georgian Bay, to pick up a camera and photograph Evergreen, her father Don Green’s legendary 1978 Canada’s Cup winner. That shift launched a career that has taken her around the globe – several times – photographing the greatest events, yachts, and icons of the era.
30 Years of Ultimate Sailing includes personal essays by inspirational sailors from all walks, including John Bertrand, Paul Cayard, Annie Gardner, Lars Grael, Stan Honey, Philippe Kahn, John Kilroy, Jerry Kirby, Buddy Melges, Martha Parker, Ken Read, Jimmy Spithill and John Thomson.
The foreword is by The Curmudgeon himself – Tom Leweck, and the biography is penned by yachting journalist Betsy Crowfoot, with captions by Rob Grant. Green opens each chapter with an insight, and her introduction is engaging.
The book features hundreds of images that bring the viewer into the heart of the fray, to fully experience the passion, bustle, and beauty of yacht racing.
Gary Jobson affirmed, saying after a sneak preview, “Every image by Sharon Green is a jewel. The combination of clarity and motion is magic. As you browse through this breathtaking book, you’ll be transported aboard every boat. Each time I turn the pages, I discover something new. 30 Years of Ultimate Sailing perfectly captures the high end of our sport during this innovative era.”
Sharon Green’s 30 Years of Ultimate Sailing makes its premiere at the US Sailboat Show in Annapolis, Md. (October 9-13 2014) where she will be hosted at the Harken Inc. booth. Green will be on hand to sign copies of the book and the 2015 edition of the Ultimate Sailing Calendar.
The book will also be available at select retailers and the ultimatesailing.com website.