Ken Legler
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Coaching Philosophy

As a career sailing coach and life long sailor, Ken believes sailboat racing is supposed to be fun. His experience, accomplishments and style reflects this philosophy.

Coaching Career

Head Coach at Tufts, 1980-present

  • 20 National championships (8 women’s, 5 team racing, 3 dinghy, 3 singlehanded, 1 match racing)
  • 92 All-American (46 skippers, 25 Women skippers, 21 Crews)
  • Numerous New England championships (most recently, 2 in the fall of 2019)

Head Coach at US Merchant Marine Academy, 1978-1980

  • 2 nationals championships
  • 4 All-Americans

US Sailing Team, part-time, 1981-1985

  • 2 470 Worlds, Finn Gold Cup, Pan-Am Games, Pre-Olympics, Kiel Week
  • British University Tour


  • 1st College Dinghy champs
  • 1st College Team Racing Champs
  • 1st Lark Class Nationals
  • 1st US Sailing Offshore Champs
  • 1st 8 times Blind Sailing Nationals as sighted guide
  • 1st Hinman Trophy Team Racing Masters
  • 1st Yale’s Snow & Satisfaction regatta
  • 1st Southern Ocean Racing Conference
  • Competed in six World champs
  • Captain of an undefeated Tabor Academy team
  • Captain of the University of Rhode Island Sailing Team
  • College All-American

Principal Race Officer

  • US Olympic Trials
  • 470 Class Worlds
  • Internationals Canoe Worlds
  • Miami Race Week, TP 52s and Farr 40s
  • Nordic Farr 40 Champs
  • 420 Nationals
  • Key West Race Week since 1994
  • Laser Nationals & Midwinters
  • Club 420 North American’s 3 times
  • Optimist New Englands 3 times
  • Nationals for the following classes: V-15, Jet 14, A Scow, Fireball, Comet and Winsurfing
  • Countless college races


  • 4 Team Racing Worlds
  • 6 British Team Racing Nationals
  • Numerous Match Racing Regattas

Clinic Director

  • Numerous junior and adult advanced racing clinics, rules, tactics and race management seminars, and instructor training clinics

Program Director

  • Edgartown YC 2003
  • Wianno Yacht Club, Osterville, MA, summers 1989-1995
  • Manchester Sailing Association, Manchester, MA 1996-1998

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Ken’s Coaching Tips

Emmet Smith 

Emmet Smith

Emmet Smith joined the Jumbos as an assistant coach in the fall of 2018. Smith, a graduate of Yale University and a member of their sailing team as an undergraduate, has years of coaching experience in both interscholastic and collegiate level sailing. Before taking this position, Smith was a varsity coach at Branford High School, and was a head coach at Wesleyan University.

Smith has many accomplishments under his belt as an athlete himself, and has shown his expertise in the sport. These includes: four consecutive podium finishes at the US Sailing George R. Hinman National Team Race Championship, including wins in 2009 and 2012; two consecutive wins at the Wilson Trophy (UK team racing open championship) in 2010 and 2011 as well as a 3rd in 2018; a second-place finish at the 2011 ISAF Team Racing World Championship in Schull, Ireland, and he was invited to the 2017 US Sailing Lloyd Phoenix National Offshore Championship as tactician of ESCA overall winner Frers 33 ‘Pachyderm’.

Rachael Silverstein

Coaching Career

Assistant Coach at Tufts, 2015-present

Women’s Sailing Coach at University of South Florida, 2013-2015

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