Recently, US Watercraft’s Sydney Borges sat down with Alerion owner Captain Patrick Evans to talk to him about his Alerion Express 28, Sundance.
SB: Thank you, Captain Evans, for agreeing to talk to me today. Tell me, how did you learn about the Alerion Express 28?
Capt. Evans: Well, I suppose I was like most people who fell in love with an Alerion. I was crewing on someone else’s, saw how nicely it sailed and tacked, and decided that I just had to get one of my own. I’ve sailed on a lot of different boats; growing up, my dad and I would buy old, rundown wooden sailboats, fix them up and sell them to make a profit. We owned and worked on a lot of different boats, and to me the Alerion 28 is one of the best boats of them all.
SB: Why do you say that?
Capt. Evans: I have owned five sailboats, and the Alerion is completely unique. No matter where I go people will comment on how pretty she is. On my Alerion 28, I put carbon fiber sails. I love how they make my boat stand out. I go to concerts, restaurants, etc., in my boat, and everywhere I go people love to watch her sailing. I don’t even own a power boat anymore, I got rid of it because I love the Alerion so much. If I need to power somewhere, the Alerion has a motor and I can use that. In addition to her beauty, she is a wonderful boat to sail. Whenever I take friends out on my Alerion, they can’t help but comment on how well she handles: she turns on a dime and is super reactive to the touch. Personally, I think that the best thing about the Alerion 28 is that you can solo sail her and she can go wing-on-wing.
SB: Why do you love racing you Alerion 28 so much?
Capt. Evans: Racing Alerions … it creates a bond. When you race an Alerion you create bonds with the other sailors. You get to know them and you are part of an awesome community.
SB: Tell me about a time you were most proud to be an Alerion owner.
Capt. Evans: Well, I race a lot and one time I was out in the middle of a race when a huge storm came in. The wind was blowing 35 knots and all around me boats were flipping and spinnakers were shredding. It was intense; they had to send out rescue teams. However, even in all of this, the only reason we couldn’t finish the race on the Alerion 28 was because the buoy blew away. If the buoy had still been there we would have been able to finish the race. At 35 knots the Alerion 28 was still in the race and going fast. I love the Alerion because it’s such a safe boat.
SB: What do you most enjoy about your Alerion 28?
Capt. Evans: I love the fact that she can go wing-on-wing; it makes her a dangerously competitive boat. If the wind is blowing above 7 knots, she’s a racehorse and she just takes off. I recommend that everyone race an Alerion. It’s an excellent boat to race and you don’t have to be eighteen to sail it. I grew up racing and I loved it, but then I had a family and stopped racing as much. After the kids got older, I wanted to start racing again and the Alerion 28 was perfect for that. In most of the races I sail, the guys are 50+. One guy is turning 90 this year and he still races his Alerion!
SB: I hear that you have a very special Alerion.
Capt. Evans: Yes, my boat is actually really unique. Her name is Sundance, hull number 45, and I bought her from New Orleans and restored her. The interesting thing about my Alerion is that she was the prototype Alerion 28 for the jib boom. The very first Alerion 28’s with jib booms were made in 1997 but Sundance was made in 1995 as the prototype and she sails just beautifully. Last year, I won the Messmer Cup with her, and this year I won the Bud Light Regatta hosted by Marco Island.
Sydney: Thank you, Captain Evans, for your time. Do you have any closing comments you would like to add?
Capt. Evans: The Alerion 28 is a unique product. She is safe, beautiful and fast. Sail with anyone and they’ll tell you that they love her. She’s the best.