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Nationals ’10 – the ‘other’ version

08/09/2010 1 comment

Following on from James’ report here are my memories of the weekend;

Likes – getting to race against other 100s on proper W/L courses! No Merlins in the way, no Solos beating straight into your kite leg, no reaching!

Dislikes – that beat back after the last race. Having said that, when I got in & saw people less lucky with their masts/sails/bones I felt I ought to consider myself fortunate that the only thing I’d broken was my will to live.

Worst Capsize – difficult to pick which of the 3 big ones was “worst”. The one where I was about to lead nick around the last top mark of race 6 before the wind shifted and dumped the boat to windward was quite emotional. I was in the process of untangling myself from the toestraps and mainsheet when the wind swung back, caught under the rig and flipped the boat back up like a rocket flinging me into the boom! (anyone who doesn’t believe me can ask Clive) The BIG nosedive/flip on Saturday was officially classified as ‘troubling’.
But the biggest impact was on that last leg of race 8 – I’d gone round the top mark & had decided to get through the gate under main alone (it was so close to the top mark that it was easier to run deep single sail to get through before hoisting and heading off into the ether). As I got to the gate I found it almost completely blocked by the 3 boats in front of me lying on their sides like ducks in a row. I was trying to thread my way through the gap available and was wondering why they’d all fallen over together when I ran into the gust that had felled them. The boat took off, there was water everywhere and before I could even begin to work out what to do next the boat corkscrewed off into a massive deathroll. The impact was huge and I have the whopping bruise under my arm to prove it. After a few minutes of hard work I was back up and flying but it has left its mark!

Funny Incidents – you mean apart from Grumph being prevented from going out late with the rest of the gang by Mrs Grumph? Ok, how about the look on TimG’s face on Saturday afternoon when I told him that the next race was double length (pfft, lightweight!)?

Race 2 was a lot like the other races on Saturday, i.e. Simon Childs had trucked up the beat and then fallen over on the gybe, nothing special there. He had got back up and decided there wasn’t enough room to get the kite back up so went single sail to the bottom gate which allowed me to pile over the top of him with the kite flying. As I rounded the mark a boatlength ahead I could hear Simon growling like a tiger so I could tell he was fairly wound up. I didn’t expect him to go ballistic and jump 10 places up the beat and get back into the podium places!

I think it was race 6 when I spent most of the 2nd beat watching Tony Jukes capsizing. Not multiple capsizes, just the once but he managed to drag it out for a good 3-4 minutes without even getting as far as the centreboard, or the water or anything for that matter. He was blown over on the beat and seemed to get caught in 2 minds as whether to swing a leg over onto the board or hold onto the shroud and lean back. Within a fairly short time he was stuck lying on his back along the gunwhale grimly holding onto the shroud behind his head. Everytime he tried reaching for the board with his foot he started to slip down the hull and he’d frantically haul himself back up again, but always lying on his back! It was mesmerising just watching this constant battle of balance and gymnastics as he seemed determined to do whatever it was he was going to do whilst lying on his back. Tony, I salute you!

Categories: class regattas, wipeouts

RS100 DAKINE UK National Championship – Event Report


The weekend of the 4th and 5th of September 2010 saw the inaugural RS100 DAKINE UK National Championship get underway at Parkstone Yacht Club with a surprising 43 entries- not bad for a class that’s only been going for six months!

A free pre-event training session courtesy of RS Sailing followed by a trip to the local fleet’s favoured curry haunt proved a successful confidence boost and nerve settler for many of the travellers.  Entries came from as far as afield as Cornwall, Merseyside and the Blackwater, all arriving with the same aims: to pitch their skills and learn some more about these new toys.


a few clips from Saturday


Saturday got underway with a steady F3-4.  It would be nice to say the Parkstone Team had some local advantage, however with the neaps and a racecourse around their unfamiliar side of Brownsea Island, it was abundantly clear that the only advantage they pressed was some pretty handy core skills and plenty of time on the water racing other RS100s.


close racing at the first ever RS00 Class Event in Parkstone, UK

The top of the fleet was settling in to some familiar patterns, Hywel Roberts from Parkstone taking the first ever RS100 class event race win in his 8.4 rig.  Huw Powell was in hot pursuit finishing second in a 10.2 rig with Neal Freeman taking his only hit outside the top two grabbing an eventually discarded third place.

Nick Peters and Clive Eplett fought it out for 4th and 5th respectively, opening up another can of worms on the whole 8.4 / 10.2 debate.  Which is quicker on a championship windward / leeward course… it’s yet to be settled.  Many of us put this down to Clive’s speed downwind which was simply astounding throughout the training event and Day 1.

Further down the fleet there was some noticeable talent coming up through ranks. Simon Childs with dominating pace upwind, guest helmsman Tim Garvin posting an impressive 6th from his first ever ride in a production 100 and David Thomas proving the transition from a Laser sailor to a more than competent RS100 pilot is about 4 days on the water with a bit yoof n’ talent on your side.

Guest competitor, Tim Garvin teaches the RS100 fleet the Port/Starboard Rule

Race 2 & 3 followed similar patterns, same names at the top of the list.  In race 2 Neal took the win from Nick Peters, Clive drag-racing into 3rd downwind.  Fourth and Fifth places ‘stayed local’ with Hywell Roberts and Phil Jackson respectively.  Again four 8.4s in the top five, this class is ever-evolving into something very interesting!

Race 3 also saw the return to form of Chris Larr, the former RS Vareo National Champion who was grossly infringed by a port tacker on the first beat of Race 1 leaving him out of the line up for the first two guns of the day.   Chris notched up a 3rd in his 10.2 rig, although the slimmed down man owned up to saying it was bit too much like hard work.   Another ex-Vareo boy, Mick Church from South Cerney SC got around this course unscathed and posted an impressive 7th – a clear indication that careful, consistent sailing can bring home the chocolates.

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Capsize Recovery- examples and demo video

15/07/2010 36 comments

Last night Mick and I armed with a video camera, a F3 to 4 blustery breeze and some soon-to-be bruised up limbs decided to film my recoveries from ‘classic’ RS100 cock-ups to help demonstrate my techniques.  These aren’t official and by no means take them as gospel, but I learned the hard way that sometimes you simply cannot climb in over the side and going around the back is the best and quickest solution.

The footage isn’t pretty and if you are a tad sensitive to seeing what appears to be a 95kg man dry-humping an epoxy racing dinghy, then please, do not look.  I can assure you that there was no pleasure in filming this, it’s a physical boat and I am truly aching this morning…

Anyway, these demos include:

– Example 1: a stalled tack, similar to a windward capsize
– Example 2: too high out of a gybe, overpowered with the kite up
– Example 3: missed the toe-straps!
– Example 4: ballsed-up ‘dry capsize’

In my experience so far, it is not ‘righting the boat’ that has been an issue, it’s getting back in to it without encouraging another capsize when climbing over the side.  I have therefore discovered there are basically two types of capsize: controlled and uncontrolled.  Examples 1 & 2 are controlled, whereas 3 & 4 are uncontrolled.

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Categories: videos, wipeouts

Capsize Expert!


Enough of these excellent sailor blogs. “I blasted past the solos/rs200s/lasers/vareos.”

RS100 Duffer speaks.

Picked up RS100 GBR(ha-ha!)144 on Saturday. Put the various bits together on Sunday (8.4 sail). Monday off to the reservoir. Managed to get the kite halyard tangled at top of mast so didn’t rig kite. Looks a bit breezy so not a bad idea anyway. My test “sail” had been more of a test capsize in force 5 ?gusting 6 at Farmoor so I’m rather nervous..read twit scared. Launch ok. Bit of faffing about while boat and wind decide which tack I’m going out on. Ok just coming out of the sheltered area so I’d better pull on some kicker and hike. WOOOOOW. Spill wind..Spill wind…clew catching in water.. hike .. hike… need to get more kicker on.. lean in to grab kicker sheet…and capsize. What’s that little mark on the bottom? Oh its a small hole? Is that supposed to be there? God its tiring climbing on the centreboard.

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Categories: club sailing, wipeouts