Team Racing Book and CD by Gavin O'Hare

"Gear Up" from our November 21, 2006, /SW eNewsletter/


Mark trap passback? Defense against the mark trap? Balance? There are more than a few sailors who wish they'd done some dinghy sailing in college and knew the tactics, dynamics, and vocabulary involved in a popular segment of our sport; team racing. Gavin O'Hare, head dinghy coach at the United States Naval Academy has updated his Contemporary Team Racing CD, and his book, Contemporary Team Racing, through 2008. Together they're invaluable tools. "Team racing usually involves teams composed of three crews in three separate boats matched against three opposing crews in their respective boats," says O'Hare in his book. "The goal is to have the majority of your team finish ahead of the opposing team." Sounds simple, right? Well, it can be if you spend some time with O'Hare's CD. Beginning with the Concept of Team Racing, the Game Plan, then Accomplishing the Game Plan, O'Hare uses lucid prose and Flash animations to explain the complexities of team racing. There's also a section on how to practice, a list of "Do's and Don'ts," and a video from the Hinman regatta, US SAILING's Team Racing championship. What really make the CD great are the Flash animations. There are few tools as effective for showing team racing tactics and how situations develop. You can pause, rewind, or fast forward through the animations, which is especially helpful for those of us who have a hard time visualizing concepts. When O'Hare was a midshipman at the Naval Academy, he learned about team racing from one of the greats, coach Gary Bodie, now the head coach of the U.S. Sailing Team. These days, in addition to coaching at Navy, O Hare is on US SAILING's Hinman Trophy committee and conducts team racing seminars around the country. There are few people as qualified as O'Hare to talk about the subject, and anyone who wants to learn what Team Racing is all about, would be wise to check out both the book and the CD. The book sells for $9.95, the CD for $19.95,