The letterbox spinnaker takedown is the safest spinnaker drop when sailing offshore. It keeps people off the bow, keeps the forward hatch closed, and it prevents the sail from getting away from the crew. Here is a good drone clip shot by Warner Nickerson of the J/111 C.A.G. letterboxing her A5 going around the Alma Grund Lighthouse, the last turning mark of the 350-mile AF Offshore race, also known as the Gotland Runt or Around Gotland Race. The second clip of a letterbox takedown shot on the Santa Cruz 70 WESTERLY after she crossed the finish line of the 2200-mile Pacific Cup in 2018. After nine days of racing, the crew takes down the 250 square meter asymmetrical for the last time – on that race.

Letterbox takedown is the safest way for spinnaker drop

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Adam Loory
Adam Loory

Adam Loory is a lifetime sailor, who worked as the General Manager of UK Sailmakers International for 34 years. He is based in Port Chester, NY and regularly sails his custom Rodger Martin-designed 40-footer Soulmates on the Long Island Sound.

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