Lots of people don’t want anything to do with small boats. They’re wet, they flip over, there isn’t much room for a cooler…whatever your reason, they don’t appeal to everyone. But the competitive spirit still burns within. You take the saying “when two sailboats are on the water, they’re racing” very seriously. You just prefer a more comfortable ride!
If you look at many of the major around-the-buoy regattas like Cowes Week in the UK, Key West Race Week, Race Week at Newport, and of course the big point to point ocean races like Newport to Bermuda, Sidney to Hobart, and the ChicagoMac Race, they are all done in keelboats, with teams of people on the boat. Keelboats allow you to get your friends out on your boat and have some fun sailing with them. If you can get a usual group together you begin to gel as a team and work on the maneuvers together. Communication becomes important, and maybe people even begin to communicate less because they can rely on each other to do what they are supposed to do.
Leadership is what is rewarded in Keelboat Sailing. Being able to buy a good boat, tune it up correctly, and build a great team, understanding their strengths and often your own weaknesses in order to come together and bring home the win.