IOM sailboats: Stories of old & historical data

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Josip Marasovic
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Posts: 44
Joined: 20 Dec 2021, 20:20
Sail number: CRO
Club: JK Zenta
Design: K2
Location: Croatia

IOM sailboats: Stories of old & historical data

Post by Josip Marasovic » 22 Oct 2022, 22:52

Greetings dear IOM friends worldwide! :)

as the new VC of Information and Communication, there is one special request I have for all of you eager to help our IOM class and my fresh starts on the Executive board. :wink: :idea:
I was looking for some historical data that could help to shed some more light on how old were first one-metre sailboats that we know of, but not in the "he said, she said" manner, we would need some evidence for any claims made. Allow me to start first with what Mr Robert Grubiša uncovered for me just recently regarding this subject (thanks Robert, you are constantly proving to be full of valuable & useful information about RC sailing!).

Here I uploaded two short excerpts from the magazine "More" from Croatia which has a very good reputation (the most important nautical/maritime-related magazine in SE Europe). This edition is from 2002. The interviewer was talking to Mr Mario Fafangel (Slovenian Olimpic sailor), and you can read a little bit more about him here:

So, what he basically states in "More" magazine here on the uploaded photo excerpts is the following, allow me to quote him shortly and to translate it for you:

"...I loved the sea before I could even understand myself, with 6 years old I would find an old cork bottle cap and then I would insert a nail into it as a keel, a little bit of paper for sails and then we would let them downwind. All the kids loved these small sailboats, so we started working on our models. One was working on a half-meter, another on 60cm and another on one metre...So, because that meant one was faster than another, we all agreed to make one class so that we could all participate in competitions equally. That is why we have built a one-metre class which had 2m masts and 20 cm width. When we reached 18 years old we were building those big models and then we would let them go towards Lošinj port (gate). First, we would release them, and then we would all row behind them, models are racing fast powered by wind, and we are lagging behind them, so when we reach the end we would quickly rotate them with a wooden stick. From that it all started, I started working in the shipyard Martinolić and soon there was no place from the keel up towards mast that I was not familiar with."

Later on, he goes on to mention plentiful regattas on Lošinj island each year, and he mentioned that they were also raced long before he was even born. He was most familiar with sailing regattas in the period from 1925. - 1930. ...

Considering the evidence provided here, it means that all the way back around 1932. we had One metre sailboats / fleet sailing on Lošinj island in Croatia!
Following this example, I would be very thankful to see what are the oldest evidence we can find for each country mentioning one metre sailboats enjoying their first regatta races or just being built. That is something that many people would love to read and I am sure it will elevate the status of the IOM class worldwide even more considering that it provides evidence of the great reputation that came out through such a long and cherished tradition & proud history we all follow today.
(I could speak about the prestige that follows the continued long-lasting IOM tradition up until today as true value almost always survives the test of time, but I do not like how that word is tainted in my eyes :) )*

Alright, hope this will help us all to uncover some more valuable hidden gems like this from other countries as well, if nothing, at least somebody will read this interesting story (from old). :wink:
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IOMICA VC Information & Communications
⛵ "We may not be able to control the wind, but we can always adjust our sails" ⛵

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