About the Classic Yacht Owners Association

The membership-driven, nonprofit Classic Yacht Owners Association was established in 2015 to encourage fellowship amongst owners within the classic yacht community. One of the organization’s goals is to help shape the future of the sport by influencing and cultivating long-term regional cooperation amongst those who are dedicated to owning, maintaining, and racing sailing vessels. CYOA also works to promote classic yacht ownership with the objective of attracting new members and creating new funding opportunities to support future classic yacht events.


  1. Give competitors a voice in shaping the on-the-water experience at regattas.
  2. Take responsibility for our sport (owners association), and demonstrate a fundamental understanding of the intricacies of classic racing by adopting a rating and a sailing approach that isn’t just more like that used in the Mediterranean, but simply more reflective of what makes sailing and racing classic yachts so compelling and fun!
  3. Partner with OAs to increase participation and financial support for their events.
  4. Expand and engage regattas which feature classic classes to make the customer experience more inclusive, more sustainable, and more consistent.
  5. Develop programs that can foster intellectual and experiential exchange as a means to encourage ownership, active participation, and sharing of these functional pieces of art.
  6. Use digital media to share experiences in order to attract new owners and programs, as well as to educate and engage casual fans about the history and importance of preservation.
  7. Increase communications and engagement with classic sailing yacht communities around the world with a eye toward encouraging owners to bring their boats and programs to the USA for a season or more.


It’s about spending time on the water. Time on the water in a boat that was built the way god intended it to be built – out of stuff he invented.

It’s about being the steward of a piece of history – or a piece of history in the making. Do no harm, and make sure she is passed to the next steward in decent shape, but for god’s sake, use her for the purpose for which she was intended. Go sailing. Or motoring. Or rowing. Or whatever. She’s happier when she’s on the water.

It’s about putting together a crew of friends, partly because they know their way around a boat, but mostly because we enjoy each other’s company. And it’s about spending time with like-minded fanatics, competing with class on the water and telling BS stories at the bar afterward.

We learn from each other. We bark at each other. We collaborate, we disagree, we hug, we share a bottle. We get wet, tired, grouchy and, in the end, exultant, because we have the pleasure and the privilege of doing something that Herreshoff, Burgess, Fife, Mylne and Watson never thought would happen – we’re going to sea in their creations in the 21st century, and we’re loving every minute of it.

“All for one and one for all” really goes without saying, doesn’t it?

But let’s use that as a starting point – the organizing principle, if you will, for what we believe could be the best community of like-minded enthusiasts in the world of yachting – or the world of anything, really. CYOA is a plaque on your boat, a sticker on your car, a tattoo on your ankle – it’s an indelible statement you make about who you are and what you believe in. It’s not an “owner’s association”, it’s a brotherhood. It’s a cult. It’s a movement. And you’re in.

All in on classic yachts. We’re crazy. We need a secret handshake.


While the longer-term goal of CYOA is to be an inclusive community that provides value for owners of all types of classic yachts, the short-term focus has been on increasing participation in and enjoyment of classic yacht regattas in New England.

To that end, in collaboration with our leadership, members and regatta organizers, we’ve developed the guidelines designed to help improve and bring an increased level of consistency to the overall competitor experience.

Check out our Classic Yacht Rating Guidelines.

The Classic Yacht Owners Association is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(C) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions and membership fees are tax deductible. Employer Identification Number: 81-285925


Executive Committee

  • Steve White, Chairman (Eggemoggin Reach Regatta)
  • Bill Lynn, Vice Chairman (Herreshoff Classic Yacht Regatta)
  • Timothy Dittrich, Secretary (Corinthian Classic Regatta)
  • Diana Brown, Treasurer (Nantucket Race Week and Opera House Cup)

Board of Directors

  • Drew Lyman (Camden Classics Cup)
  • Thom Ashton (Castine Classic Yacht Race)
  • Dennis Gunderson (Camden to Brooklin Race)
  • Jens Lange (Newport Classic Yacht Regatta)
  • Joel Labuzzetta (Indian Harbor Classic Yacht Regatta)
  • Michael Emmert (Heritage Cup)
  • Ken Colburn (NYYC and Boothbay Classic Yacht Regatta)

CRF 2022 Technical Committee

Jim Taylor, Chair

Adam Langerman

Joe Loughborough

Bob Stephens

Greg Stewart

Susan Wayne

Steve White

Glenn Cook 

Peter Gerard

Thanks to our Partners

Interested in becoming a partner of the CYOA? Contact Us membership@classicyachts.org

The Classic Yacht Owners Association is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(C) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions and membership fees are tax deductible. Employer Identification Number: 81-285925

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