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Owen Torrey

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 0
Bronze 1
Total 1
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameOwen Cates•Torrey, Jr.
Used nameOwen•Torrey
Born31 October 1925 in New York, New York (USA)
Died13 February 2001 in Norwalk, Connecticut (USA)
AffiliationsNoroton YC, Darien (USA)
NOC United States


After graduating from St. Paul’s Prep in 1943, Owen Torrey enlisted in the army and was called to active duty in 1944. He was discharged in 1945 after being wounded in action in the European campaign. After his return home he graduated from Harvard in 1948 and from Columbia Law School three years later. Initially he practiced admiralty law in New York for nine years, but then set up his own sailmaking business. The venture proved to be very successful and Torrey sold the business to Charles Ulmer, Inc., although he was retained by the owners as vice president and designer. Because there were no Swallow class boats in the U.S. in 1948, the American entry for the Olympics was the runner-up boat in the Star class at the U.S. Trials. Despite their obvious unfamiliarity with the boat, Torrey and his crew member, Woody Pirie, surprisingly took the bronze medals. Torrey continued to be active in sailing, both through his business and, in 1983, as a sail consultant to the America’s Cup trial yacht, Courageous.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1948 Summer Olympics Sailing USA Owen Torrey
Two Person Keelboat, Open (Olympic) Woody Pirie 3 Bronze