what’s in a name?

The latest from Bruce Kirby in the massive Laser, er, Torch pissing contest…. Be sure to read this as well…

In an attempt to rescue the Laser Class from its downhill course of the past few years, I have reluctantly decided that a name change, or re-branding, is necessary. During the past three or four years, dealers have had difficulty getting timely delivery of boats, and in particular, of parts. We have had calls and e-mails from various parts of the world asking if there is anything that can be done to save the Laser. To give some idea how critical the situation with Lasers has become (as of mid-April, 2013), there is a boat shop in Toronto which has 52 American-built Lasers that have been brought in for repairs of various kinds. Read on.

Laser Performance, in both Europe and North America, own the name LASER and the sunburst symbol on the sail, but they don’t own the boat. Because I am owed quite a bit of money by these firms in unpaid design royalties, it has been possible for me to terminate their building rights at both factories. What the Laser sailing public must try to get their heads around is that it is not the name of the boat that matters, It is the boat itself – that 13’ 10” bit of fiberglass and aluminum that provides us with untold pleasure. I love the name Laser. I was there in the beginning when Ian Bruce, the boats’ first builder, came up with it. I have lived with it and revered it for more than 40 years…but I know that if the boat is to be saved it must have a new name.