Larry Leonard Joins North Sails
Veteran sailmaker and world-class sailor Larry Leonard has joined North Sails and will work within the Performance Resource Group for the world's largest sailmaker. Leonard, who co-founded Leonard Sails with his father after graduating from college in 1976, and later founded Quantum Sail Design Group, brings more than 30 years of experience to the North Sails team.
"Larry and I worked together at Sobstad Sails in the 1980s and I have always respected his commitment to the sport of sailing and his incredible knowledge and experience within the sailmaking spectrum," said Tom Whidden (Essex, CT), CEO of North Marine Group. "He has been a formidable competitor for many years, so I know first hand what an incredible asset he will be to North's sailmaking, sail design and sales teams worldwide," he said. "Larry also understands the importance of good customer service, which is a priority within North Sails, so I know our customers will be in good hands when working with him."
Leonard's role within North Sails' Performance Resource Group will include working on special projects, providing ongoing customer service and support and consulting with both the design and technology departments.
"I am very excited about working for North Sails," said Leonard, who has raced in nearly every major regatta and distance race worldwide, including the 1987 America's Cup in Fremantle, Australia, where he was mainsail trimmer and sail designer for "America II." Leonard and his team at Sobstad Chesapeake helped build and design sails for Bill Koch's 1992 America's Cup winning team "America3" and the Whitbread Ocean Race Winners "Yamaha" (Whitbread 60) and "Endeavour" (Maxi) during the 1993-94 Around the World Race (now known as the Volvo Ocean Race.) "I admit this move is a major change for me since I have been in competition with North Sails for nearly two decades, but I feel it is a great opportunity to work with one of the most technologically advanced companies in the marine industry. I've spent the better part of my life either racing sailboats or building sails and I am happy that I will be able to continue my career with a team of people who share my goal to make the strongest, fastest and most durable sails possible."