Olympic history holds evidence that, in fact sailing is very much a family sport with some interesting firsts. One has to go back to Count Hermann de Pourtales of Switzerland, in the 1900 Olympic games for evidence. He was the oldest sailor in the games at 53. Sailing alongside was his wife, Helene de Pourtales at 33, the oldest woman in any of the 1900 Olympic sports. Helene became the first female Olympic medalist when Lerina (pictured below) crossed the line in a corrected time of 2 hours, 15 minutes and 32 seconds in Race 1 of the 1-2 Ton Class. The wife and husband sailing duo were also joined by their nephew Bernard and they added a silver medal to their collection in Race 2 after they finished behind the German boat Aschenbradel.
|Lerina - 1900 Olympic games|
|7 Meter - Bluebird|
Resource: http://startsailingnow.com/ and http://savingsailing.com/2012/04/03/unlike-any-other-sport/
|Paul and Hilary Smart|
Fast forward to 2012 with brother and sister, Zach and Paige Railey from Clearwater, Fla., birthplace of the Optimist dinghy: "We were pretty much those tan little hippie babies with bleach-blond hair running around with their mom down at the beach," Paige Railey said. "It just seemed like a natural thing for us to go into a sport that was associated with the water. Our whole life was based around the water." When Zach was 8, their family dentist suggested that his mother, Ann, enroll him in a summer sailing program. Three years later, it was Paige's turn. They both fell in love with the sport and began winning regattas.
|Zach (Finn) and Paige Railey (Laser Radials)|