THE 1960's



The 1960 Rebel Champion was a father-son team, indicative of the family atmosphere the Association was encouraging. Clark Langton of Cowan Lake Sailing Association and his son Jim took home the Champion's trophy from the Nationals held at Island Bay Yacht Club in Springfield, Illinois. The regatta featured 41 boats and especially long race courses. For example, one race was a triangle three miles long to be sailed twice around plus an extra leg to windward. Ed Fromme was second in this series.

The National Rebel Class Association was being refined under the leadership of Commodores Antonio Versaci, 1960, and Lewis Herndon, 1961. Ray Greene & Company, Inc.. was asked to furnish documentation specifying the actual weight of each boat purchased. A policy was introduced to rotate the Nationals between the eastern, central and western areas of the country. (Many considered the western areas to be just slightly east of the Mississippi.) Deep Creek Yacht Club, MD bid for the 1962 Nationals.

Fiberglass boats were moving around the country as 1963 saw the Association grow to 138 active members and 12 associate members. Boat builder Ray Greene agreed to pay the first year's dues for each purchaser of a new Rebel. A new "Best Performance" trophy for young sailors was added to the other trophies to be won if winds and skill proved favorable. At the 1963 Nationals, fleets were encouraged to use spinnakers and then to report to Ray Greene the performance value of such a sail at the next annual meeting. By 1964, dues were raised to $5 a year. It's a good thing they weren't any higher as many boat owners needed to put money into repair costs. 26 boats capsized in the 1963 Nationals with considerable damage. Don Musselman, a Ray Greene Sales Manager, became the star of 1964 when he showed up with a truck load of spare masts, booms, and other equipment to help the damaged boats.

Bob Smith of One Design Yachtsman was a guest of the Nationals in 1965 and gained some publicity for the class. Lud Fromme won praise and an award for high efforts on behalf of the National Rebel Class Association. The praise from fellow sailors for Lud and his wife Katherine continued through the 1990's.

Association responsibility rested on the shoulders of Commodores Leon Striegel, 1962, Lud Fromme, 1963, John Bartlett, 1964, Chris Patton, 1965, Perry Brittain, 1966, Cliff Rose, 1967, Jack Evans, 1968, and Bill Etherton, 1969.

By 1966, Sports Illustrated was covering the National Rebel Class races in 103 F temperatures at White Rock Lake in Dallas. Experimental use of a genoa jib was the subject of the day. However, headlines changed when during the third race a fire department helicopter flew over the fleet warning them to come in as a gale-force squall wind was on the way. When three more helicopters showed up, the Race Committee reluctantly called the race!

It is reported that at the 1968 Nationals at Glen Lake, MI, 72 boats were on the starting line. A record for the Rebel Class!
The REBEL RABBLE had become an important element of the National Rebel Class Association keeping the membership in touch with sailing and with each other during the year. Sammy Evans became editor of the REBEL RABBLE in 1967 continuing through 1971.


The 1960's saw the first three time winner of the Rebel National Championships:
  • 1961 Dave Mahan - Deep Creek Yacht Club, Deep Creek, MD
  • 1962 Dave Mahan - Deep Creek Yacht Club, Deep Creek, MD
  • 1963 Dr. Leon Striegel - Crab Orchard Yacht Club, Carbondale, IL (Leon bought his wife a mink coat because they won!)
  • 1964 Tom Ehman - Huron Portage Yacht Club, Huron, MI (He placed 2nd, five times!)
  • 1965 George Carr - Clark Lake Yacht Club, Clarklake, MI
  • 1966 Perry Brittain - Corinthian Sailing Club, Dallas, TX
  • 1967 George Carr - Clark Lake Yacht Club, Clarklake, MI
  • 1968 George Carr* (first 3 x winner) - Clark Lake Y.C., Clarklake, MI
  • 1969 Edward Fromme - Toledo Sailing Club, Toledo, OH