A sailboat, also known as a sailing dinghy, a boat, or a yacht, is a boat that is powered by sails that catch the wind. Sailboats date back to Ancient Egypt, when sails were added to reed boats to sail upstream the Nile River. Later, sailboats were utilized to develop international trade routes. Sailboats can range in size from small and lightweight to mega yachts that are 200 feet (61 m) long. The type of sailboat can be distinguished by 3 characteristics: the hull type, keel type, and the mast configuration and sails. The various types of sailboats include cutter, catboat, dinghy, ketch, schooner, sloop, and yawl. Today, sailboats are mostly used for recreational activities such as sailing, cruising, and racing.
A variation of the sailboat, sport boats are high-performance racing yachts. The term sports boat emerged in the late 1980s and early 1990s. A sports boat can be characterized by a tall mast, a large main sail, a non-overlapping jib, as well as its lightweight construction making it ideal for watersports. Sport boats tend to be between 18 to 26 feet in length, and typically have none or very little on-board accommodation. They are similar to racing car in that they are only utilized in races for a limited period of time. Sport boats are designed to be taken out of the water on a regular basis.
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