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Premiere Sailing League USA to debut concept at United States Sailboat Show

by Jan Harley 5 Sep 2019 15:58 BST 10-14 October 2019
Seen on the Detroit waterfront, the RS21 is the PSL's choice of equipment for stadium sailing. © RS Sailing

In just over a month, the Premiere Sailing League USA will debut its concept for an organized, national fleet racing league during the United States Sailboat Show in Annapolis, Md., which runs from October 10-14, 2019.

Modeled after the sailing league in Europe that has taken off globally, the Premiere Sailing League USA (PSL) will supply a fleet of identical RS21 keelboats that will be raced on inshore, short course, stadium style races at select venues across the country. Sailors and fans attending the United States Sailboat Show can experience first-hand the new RS21s in multiple exhibition style races directly in front of the show for free. Look for the PSL on D Dock.

"The PSL represents the next generation of sailing," said co-founder and President Benjamin Klatzka. "This is the first step in getting this national sailing league started in America. We expect to have enough boats in position for League events to take place in waterfront cities across the country by 2022. The series schedule will be similar to other major sports leagues in the U.S.A. (NBA, MLB, etc.) and will take place over a four-month season to determine the overall series champion."

Yacht Clubs and other sailing organizations can join the League as members to enter teams in multiple regattas and to host official League events, with the advantage of not being required to purchase a fleet of boats. The unique PSL leasing model provides the boats, gear and everything necessary for this style of sailing as the concept maximizes the experience for the sailor while minimizing the cost for clubs and competitors.

Sailing broadcaster and America's Cup commentator Tucker Thompson, an enthusiastic supporter of the concept, will provide live race commentary during the exhibition event at the United States Sailboat Show, as well as during broadcast coverage of future League events. "Yacht club membership and sailing participation is in decline," said Thompson. "People aren't buying and campaigning keelboats like they used to. A provided fleet of boats and the "pay-to-play" model of sailing provides the solution and will generate new yacht club members as well as activate existing sailors looking for a new, easy and affordable competitive sailing outlet. The boats, the sails, the equipment is all provided and equalized. All you need to do is show up. It's like college sailing for adults!"

The boats are not the only equipment that will be provided by the PSL, as their partnership with robotic buoy manufacturer MarkSetBot means that technology will be incorporated into the league package. MarkSetBot remote buoys can be set, retrieved, and held in position by GPS - controlled by a mobile phone App - reducing the need for large volunteer race committees and multiple support boats.

"We are thrilled to partner with the PSL to help revolutionize sailboat racing," said MarkSetBot inventor and founder Kevin Morin. "MarkSetBot's mission is growing accessibility and ease of sailboat racing and the PSL model is perfect for doing just that. The Bots will certainly be a great addition and help to keep racing competitive and fair for such a talented group of competitors."

Technology is also at the forefront of the PSL concept making it easier and more affordable for sailors to compete and clubs to run events while decreasing the amount of personnel, overhead, and costs necessary to run traditional races while maximizing the FUN in sailing. The goal is to remove the hurdles that make access to sailing, or running events, difficult by providing an easy solution that can revolutionize the competitive sailing experience. With time and money in short supply in today's fast-paced lifestyle, the PSL style of "Pay-to-Play" will revolutionize the sport of sailing.

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