Deceased , Modern





The following is excerpted from Long’s obituary, posted on Cruising

Sumner “Huey” Long, an international yachtsman, shipping executive, and winner of many of the world’s most challenging and dangerous ocean races, died of lymphoma on December 4, at age 90.
Creating a succession of hi-tech racing sailboats named Ondine, and spanning the decades from the 1960s to the 1990s, Mr. Long won every major ocean race in the world, including the Transatlantic Race on four occasions (a record), the Newport-Bermuda Race (establishing a course record), the Sydney-Hobart Race (establishing a course record), the Fastnet Race, and the Buenos Aires-Rio Race (also establishing a course record).
Ondine II was the first all-aluminum ocean racer ever built. A 57-foot yawl designed by Bill Tripp, she went on to win races against much larger opponents, sometimes due to clever innovations by Mr. Long. One of these, an ultra-heavy spinnaker, almost caused a mutiny when, in a 50-knot Atlantic gale, Mr. Long fought with his crew to get it raised, earning him the title of “a modern day Captain Bligh” by Sports Illustrated. A subsequent yacht, Ondine VII was designed by German Frers. That yacht won the first Maxi Yacht World Championship in 1985, held at Newport, Rhode Island. In that event, Ondine VII was victorious in the first on-the-water protest hearing ever held, a practice that is now standard in world-class match racing events.
Mr. Long helped boost the careers of many aspiring world-class skippers who crewed for him, including Ted Turner who went on to win the America’s Cup in 1977, Bill Koch, the brother of David and Charles Koch, who won the Cup in 1992, and Mr. Long’s son Russell who, under his father’s guidance, introduced corporate sponsorship to the Cup event, and became the youngest American skipper in Cup history.
Long, the son of Lithuanian immigrants, was raised in Boston where his family started a jewelry business. He graduated from Brookline High School, received an appointment to the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, and, after serving as acting chief officer on a merchant marine vessel in World War II, received degrees from Kings Point Merchant Marine Academy and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This led to a career in shipping and ultimately established Mr. Long as one of the most successful tanker brokers in the world.

Sailing Related Accomplishments
Year(s) Places(s) Event
1986 1st Maxi Yacht Match Race Championship, Newport
1986 Overall Winner Maxi Yacht World Championship, Newport
1982 2nd to finish, 2nd Class A Block Island Race Week
1981, 1971, 1965, 1962 1st Class A Buenos Aires – Rio (including once setting a course record)
1979 2nd Big Boat Series, St. Francis Yacht Club
1977 1st to Finish, 1st Class A Miami – Ocean Triangle
1977 1st to finish, 2nd Class A St Pete – Fort Lauderdale
1976 1st Class A New Course Record, Capetown – Rio
1974 1st to Finish Bermuda Race
1974, 1968 1st to Finish, 1st Class A Sydney – Hobart Race
1968 1st to Finish, 2nd Class A Newport – Bermuda Race
1968 1st to Finish, 1st Class A Transatlantic: Bermuda – Travemunde
1968 2nd Class A Buenos Aires – Rio
1966 1st Class A, Overall Winner San Diego – Acapulco
1966 1st to Finish, Overall Winner Transatlantic: Bermuda to Denmark
1965 1st Class A, Overall Winner Marblehead – Halifax
1965, 1962 1st Overall Northern Ocean Racing Championship
1964 1st Overall Newport – Bermuda
1964 1st Class A, 1st to Finish St. Pete – Fort Lauderdale
1964 1st Overall, 1st Class A Miami – Cat Cay
1964, 1961 1st Overall, 1st Class A Lipton Cup
1963 1st Overall, 1st Class A Transatlantic: Newport – England
1962 1st Overall, 1st Class A Montego Bay Race
1962 1st Overall, 1st Class A Stamford – Vineyard
1962 1st to Finish, 2nd Overall, 1st Class A New Course Record, Sydney – Hobart
1961 2nd Class A Miami – Nassau
1961 1st Overall, 1st Class A St. Pete – Fort Lauderdale
1961 1st Overall, 1st Class A Transpac
1960 1st Overall, 1st Class A, 1st to Finish Transatlantic: Bermuda – Sweden

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