Fat-Bottomed Freefall

So, Wednesday came around again, along with the sun and another lovely breeze. Having been suffering from an evil cold/chesty cough for the last few days, I was unsure as to whether or not sailing was a good idea. But, obviously, it just had to be done!

I left the shore feeling confident that today was the day I would get some ‘proper’ foiling in. And it was, to a point. Having stiffened up the push-rod system so that it couldn’t flex and lose lift, the boat felt a lot happier getting out of the water. It was when she was out it all went wrong! Currently, FBG appears to fly pretty low and I am having to sit a long way back to get the boat to fly and stay flying. I am finding this a very awkward position to be in, as it is easy to over-commit, leading to some rather unceremonious splats into the water. I did find, on most occasions, that I was getting the hang of pulling in the main to get me going again, even when most of my body was submersed in water.

On one occasion, however, I was flung from the boat and am pretty certain was in freefall for a couple of seconds before hitting the water. Usually, this would be all well and good, but not this time. The problem? FBG is quite keen on this sailing malarchy, so decided not to bother waiting for me. She had sailed by herself a good 100+ meters before Mike arrived in the rib to pluck me out of the water.

This little incident led to an early return to shore for both boat and me, as the splat had left me somewhat winded and spluttering in a non-ladylike manner. The water, I discovered, is still flippin’ cold!

So, an early night for the FBG (in her newly-acquired bed in the boatshed), but I think a lot of learning was done. While my flights were still pretty brief, I was certainly staying up longer than last week and I have learnt that less is more on the ol’ tiller when the boat is in flight. I have also learnt that I could do with some more lift from the main foil, so perhaps a bit more tinkering before next week…

New top speed: 13.8 knots (and I am pretty certain I was actually in the boat at that point).


2 Replies to “Fat-Bottomed Freefall”

  1. Uhhps, the boat sailing along alone without a shockcord fixing the middle position on the tiller?Scary!I still use a shockcord and always hang on the boat for dear life if I capsize. Sometimes on the mainsheet, sometimes on the tiller extension. We have seen our boat sailing away from the sailor last year when we were out on the RIB and I thought it sailed straight due to the centered tiller/rudder. Must rethink this and be even more cautious out there alone.

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