Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing / About

Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing an Affiliate Member

About Captain Brad

Serving Central and Eastern North Carolina for 13 years, Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing was founded upon the belief that, "A bad day of sailing is better than a good day at the office."  Our school adheres to the highest professional standards set forth by the American Sailing Association, so you know you're in the most capable hands when you get out on the water. While students come from as far away as Atlanta, Charlotte, Norfolk, Richmond, Washington DC, Ohio and even the Jersey Shores, The school is dedicated to making the sport of Sailing accessible, affordable and convenient for landlocked enthusiasts in the Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill area of North Carolina.

Carolina Mainsheet is an American Sailing Association Affiliate School teaching adult sailing fundamentals courses for beginning sailors on small centerboard boats and keel boats from 23' to 28' on the coastal waters of the Neuse River and Pamlico Sound. Even better, since we want you to be able to safely find your way about the open waters, we offer some of the best education in coastal navigation, chart reading and DEAD reckoning for sailors and power boaters. And best of all, we're right in your own backyard indeed a stone's throw away with Fundamentals of Sailing Instruction in beautiful historic New Bern.

So you don't know how to sail but your dream is to buy a 40-footer, live on it and sail it to the BVI or just hop a plane and charter a 40-footer down there. Maybe your dream is a little more laid back and you'd simply just like sailing a small trailerable boat on a wonderful lake wherever you may find one. Whatever your dream about sailing....pursuing it starts right here at Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing. 

We'll teach you the basics upon which you can build your dreams (large or small) and enjoy a lifetime of thrills and adventures as a safe and competent skipper. And by the way....The American Sailing Association Certifications you earn are recognized and respected around the world because of their high standards. But at Carolina Mainsheet, we've taken it to another level. Not only do we teach sailing beyond ASA specifications, you'll notice that we have prerequisites for our courses that ASA does not require. 

When you review our course offerings, we want you to see them as a serious educational curriculum and not just a selection of beans and chips on a grocery store shelf. Our curriculum is thoughtfully designed with prerequisites thoughtfully placed along the way so you will have all the training and experience you deserve before you move on to the next ASA course. Wherever your dreams and your "bucket list" leads you, Carolina Mainsheet is here to help make your journey the thrill of a lifetime.

Come on. It's time for fun. No more putting it off. Let's get started...

Welcome Aboard.

Now let's go Sailing,

Since 2006

Welcome to Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing

Our Focus is upon the Fundamentals of Sailing for Beginners

Captain Bill Rathbun,

USCG Licensed / Master 50 Ton

Member: American Sailing Association
Basic Small Boat, Basic Keel Boat, Coastal Cruising, Bare Boat Charter and Coastal Navigation Certified
Fifty-Year Veteran: Boating and Sailing

​Born in Chicago on Lake Michigan and raised in Tidewater Virginia on the Chesapeake Bay, Captain Bill holds Master's Degrees in Industrial Design and Fine Arts. He worked in product development for over 40 years and has taught in the College of Design at North Carolina State University as well as the School of Art at East Carolina University and currently at Craven Community College in New Bern.

Sailing is his passion. Indeed, he loves teaching others how to have fun on the water while they learn the craft of proper seamanship, great sailing skills and safe boating practices.

Captain Brad Baker

USCG Licensed / Master 100 Ton

A sailing and boating expert, Brad has over 50 years on and off the water in a wide range of boating activities.

100 Ton USCG Masters License with Towing & Sailing Endorsements
Instructor - Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing
USCG Approved Instructor for OUPV and Sailing Endorsement
US Sailing Level 2 Instructor
US Sailing STEM Certified
International Offshore Safety at Sea Course

Sailing Instructor Carolina Mainsheet School of Sailing
Sailing Instructor Rush Creek Yacht Club
Sailing Instructor Lake Canyon Yacht Club
National Champion AMF Apollo sailboat
Multiple local and regional sailing championships
Owned and lived aboard SeaRay 480 Sedan Bridge

Brad is also a veteran advertising professional with over 40 years of marine marketing experience with some of the industry’s premier companies, including Mastercraft, Wellcraft, Tracker, Cigarette, Indmar, Bombardier Sea-Doo, Boating Magazine, and MarineMax. Highlights include strategic consulting, digital, social media, media buying, copywriting, print, and video production.

 He currently owns a 1974 Sunfish and a Boston Whaler 190 Outrage.

About Captain Bill

Capt Bill