Post Euro's comedown

I’ve just returned to Sunny England (seems summer arrived while I was out) and have had plenty of time sitting in the car to ponder over the Euro’s in Denmark.
It’s always sad at the end of a great event when what was once home to a fleet of Moths, tents, tools and epoxy becomes an empty field again. Horsens was a great venue – everyone all staying together, rigging together and helping each other launch from the one slipway made us all get involved – from bbq’s to Rods Tiller of Doom, along with the occasional shout across the dinghy park of ‘epoxy going spare’ as we healed our mechanical wounds.
Everyone expected this event to be a light winds affair and I went in secretly hoping for some of the marginal stuff in which the Ninja has proved so potent. What we got instead was 3 races in 20-25, 1 race in 25, and 4 races in 15-20 which proved a good test for boat, body and foil systems! I’ve put very little time into sailing in waves/chop as I just don’t get the opportunity at BCYC. The boat handled it admirably and going into the last day with some practice under my belt I was starting to mix it up with the M2’s upwind but still hesitant downwind but gradually improving and making less mistakes resulting in a 4th in the final race.
Rodders and myself had a good ding dong all week long, tied going into the final race as we’d both been consistently thereabouts and having no alphabet to worry about meant a proper showdown which went my way in the end. In hindsight, I’m glad it was as breezey as it was, hopefully showing that I’m/the boat are not a one trick pony!
Everyone had their fair share of breakages, given the wind strength and hazardous launching area with all the brands suffering a bit. You can build strong, or you can build light – its a tricky line to walk…
I’ve got a few random photos on various cameras and when I have dug them from the van I will get some up.

Europeans, alternative baby.

The europeans so far has been pretty entertaining, mostly for the wrong reasons, but for a lot of good ones too.
It all started with a day long drive from Calais in the UK team convoy which consisted of myself with Doug Pybus in the Aardvark tour bus along with 7 boats and a load of junk, following Rod Harris in his bus with Jason, Heather and James. After a 2 hour round trip of Calais due to satnav failure we were finally on the right road.

We managed to stop at a Burger King in most countries and also stop for four hours on the motorway in Germany due to a bridge being destroyed and a rubbish diversion leading to us playing in the traffic with clingfilm and windscreen wipers.
24 hours later we arrive in Denmark where I crashed out after a Haribo induced sugar rush and everyone else headed into town at midnight to find a bar. Doug was befriended up a local whose english wasn’t the best and mostly consisted of saying he loved him, followed by F*** you, many times over. It was later revealed that the bar had been shot at the night before by a crazy with a shotgun. We couldn’t tell whether this was Soren winding us up or not.

Rod “roll on death” Harris has been keeping moral high, with his usual high standard of impromptu catchphrases and boundless energy and inventive things to do with Musto LED baseball caps and the best way to enjoy a mallard.

We got a couple of days of practice/tuning in in beautiful sunny conditions before all hell broke loose on day one of racing.

To be continued…

Ninja *2

Quick post with a pic of Jo sailing her new Ninja down at Stokes bay… Sail is a shiny borrowed Hyde c/o Mike Lennon

Saturday sailing

Last Sunday was a planned day of Mothing with the intention being to get all the club boats out and potentially a few visitors. We had 7 boats out in total -should get organised more often!

A poor forecast put off most of the visitors with the exception of Kevin Ellway and Jo Evans, picking up Jo’s new Ninja and taking it for a spin. After a brief spin around the lake in it to make sure all was well Jo took to the water for her first Mothing experience and took to it very quickly blasting back and forth across the lake interspersed with large splashes and the occasional shriek!

I was out for my final sail in the Ninja before packing it up for Denmark and taking the opportunity to try a new stiffer wand with some interesting results. I reckon I need to make myself a quiver – maybe colour code them…

Weymouth Regatta

Just returned from a highly entertaining weekend down in Weymouth.

Arrived first thing on Saturday to find the sort of conditions you would expect to find a worlds cancelled in. A good solid 23 knot average with peaks at 28 over the course of the day with a far bigger chop than I’ve seen in Portland before.
The Mothies collectively headed out to test the water to find a race committee trying their hardest to not get a start away, but after 3 postponements during the start sequence we finally got away. At this point however, only about half a dozen boats were still out trying to find their way around the course! I gave up after my first lap as I was close(ish) to the academy wall and didnt have too big a sail in. Big kudos to Mike Lennon, Jason Russel and Paul Hayden for being the only finishers!
We did the thing all Moth sailors should do when in Weymouth and it’s too windy – get over to the cove and get some food and drink in. Alex and Sam found another pub with a skittle alley and we all threw ourselves into that with reckless abandon before calling it a night.
Sunday came and saw a changeable 5-15 knots throughout the races shifting around to the south over the course of the day, making the racing entertaining with some big gains and losses to be had.
Race one saw Adam May leading off the pin end followed by Alex Adams and myself. I pulled through by the top mark and stayed there, fending off a charge from Mike Lennon, until the last top mark when I kept foiling through a light patch and sailed off down the run leaving the rest of the fleet parked up.
Race two had Mike L leading the charge in the best breeze of the day, followed by myself and Adam. I snuck inside Mike down the run and held him off to the finish.
Race three went very strange, as again Adam foiled off the pin end and decided not to tack as the rest of us were parked up heading the other way with Andrew Friend leading the pack out right until he tacked and started coming back towards us again. We didn’t see Adam again as he rounded ahead of the 600 fleet who started 5 minutes earlier and we all rounded behind the 18footers who started 5 minutes later… James Roche rounded in second followed by myself. Unfortunately for James he ended up high in no wind while I went low with plenty!
There was supposed to be another race, but the wind swung and dissapeared. so we packed it in and headed in for a cup of tea.

Final results are up on the WPNSA website

Ninja has been getting better everytime I go sailing so far. Currently got four boats to do for UK customers so plenty keeping me out of trouble before the mega road trip to Denmark…

Faster than a speeding seagull

I think I might use that on my marketing blurb. Flying into a flock of them parked on the lake today and upwind in 12 knots they couldn’t get away…

Today was one of the first times I’ve had a good breeze in which I can just get out and practice and it made a welcome change, getting about 5 hours in on the water. This gave me the chance to play with gearing a little and practice my manuevers with the result being actual no-touch foiling tacks. They are certainly not every time, and certainly not to the level of Mr Lister down in Aus, but they are there.
Need to get out a bit more and get the consistency up a bit now, but the timing couldn’t be better with Weymouth this weekend… Doesn’t change the fact that on the race course I’m a muppet, but at least I can handle the boat!
Tried to get a race in this evening but the wind was a bit all over the place and it was looking like it would finish a bit later than planned. They don’t seem to be able to keep track of me around a course anyway!