6M sailing at Clapham on the 15th April.

April 16, 2012 at 4:38 pm | Posted in News | Leave a comment

A good day at the pond. The weather was bright and breezy, very breezy at times and gusty. There was a good turnout of members and 6/7 boats on the water.
I put my boat on the water for a practice but found the wind strong and gusty, laying the boat over at times and beyond control. After ten minutes or so I gave up and brought the boat in. Mark seemed keen to race and having no boat of his own to sail I offered him mine, which he sailed very successfully for the rest of the meeting.(I am sure the wind had eased a bit by then, well that,s my story and I,m sticking to it)
Having got all the boats on the water we started racing about 12, and once started we continued without break untill 2pm, getting in 13 races.
As can be seen from the results, Mark was the dominant skipper. I doubt it was because my boat was the fastest (see result of race 13) but likely down to tactics and reading the wind. In the three races that Mark was not the winner, the first was because he made an error at the start in getting there too early and having to go round, showing how important a good start is. The second he lost to Hugh and the third, which was the last race of the day and proved to be more of a match race between Mark and Leslie. It was great stuff all round the course but Leslie won in fine style.
Most of the boats were trouble free but two or three were subject to malfunction of one sort or another and the fleet got smaller as the day progressed. The day seemed to show that practically any design of boat can win if it is sailed properly and, after watching Mark, even a small adjustment in sail trim can reap rewards. I think many of us put our boat on the water with the same sail set as was used at the previous meeting, without regard to the fact that wind strength and/or direction might be different.
Results were as follows-,

Race 1. Mark, Grant, Leslie
Race 2. Mark, Grant, Lesloe
Race 3. Mark, Ted, Leslie
Race 4. Mark, Leslie, Grant
Race 5. Grant, Mark, Leslie
Race 6. Mark, Grant Hugh
Race 7. Mark, Grant, Jim
Race 8. Mark, Leslie, Grant
Race 9. Mark, Ted, Leslie
Race 10. Mark, Leslie, Grant
Race 11. Mark, Hugh, Grant
Race 12. Hugh, Mark, Grant
Race 13. Leslie, Mark
We are still starting late. I was there at 10.30 and the boat was rigged and ready by 11am but it was not untill, after a bit of prompting, we actually got on the water and started racing at 12.
A suggestion has been made that there should be a set “start” time and that any skipper not on the water and ready to race by that time could still join in the racing, but would NOT be included in the results. Judging on past months start times this requirement would have affected the published race results drastically and might spur skippers to get to the pond and on the water earlier. It is a good idea and a not unreasonable Rule but, as with all Rules, it requires some poor soul to enforce it. As a thought, such a Rule might cause some skippers to think “I can,t/don,t want to get there any earlier and if I am not going to score why bother going” and so defeat the whole object of the change. I leave the thought with you.
On a personal note, I enjoyed the day immensely. To see my boat in the hands of an expert skipper and winning races gave me great satisfaction. I felt I had joined the ranks of the old and infirm who chose to employ the services of a proffesional in the quest for success. (In case Mark gets any ideas, I use the word “employ” in it,s loosest, non payment, sense.
I hope everyone else enjoyed the day as much as I did, and well done Leslie. Derek.

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Sailing the Solings at Clapham on the 8th April.

April 12, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Posted in News | Leave a comment

Seems I missed a good day on Sunday. Lots of members turned up to race the Solings and nearly everyone seems to have had at least one win.
Hugh has provided a report.
The wind was North-west, force 1-3, cloudy, cool but no rain.
Boats are of course identical, or should be, but sail trim and the odd set up details make all the difference between sailing well and perhaps not so well.
Mark lent Leslie his boat in many races, he sailing Chris,s boat on some occasions. Richard had sail trim problems, close hauled his main was sheeted tight , nearly amidships while his jib was sheeted more open meaning that excess weather helm was forcing the boat into the wind, also the oversheeted main did not have enough low gear power for the lighter wind sections, and natural slowing of the boat when changing tack. Consequently he spent a lot of time semi-stalled with the fleet sailing past. He thought the boat was rigged wrong, with the mast needing moving forward, fortunately Mark came to his aid and set up the boat for him, sheeting the main out and adjustingb the kicking strap to give the optimum twist. He also adjusted the jib to give a clear slot all the way up the sail. After these adjustments Richard sailed well, finishing third in the last two races. If his sails had been set up correctly in the first place he would have accumulated practice and might have won a first or second place.
There are a number of skilled sail tweakers in the Ckub who are happy to help or give an opinion. Do not be shy to ask. The art can also be learned Results of the meeting as follows-,
Race 1. Mark, Jim, Chris
Race 2. Chris, Jim, Leslie
Race 3. Jim, Leslie, Chris
Race 4. Mark, Jim, Ted
Race 5. Mark, Ted, Jim
Race 6. Leslie, Chris, Ted
Race 7. Leslie, Ted, Grant
LUNCH
Race 8. Ted, Mark, Chris
Race 9. Mark, Leslie, Ted
Race 10. Mark, Leslie, Ted
Race 11. Leslie, Chris, Richard
Race 12. Leslie, Mark, Richard
Seems like it was a good day,s racing.
Hope to see you all on Sunday the 15th for 6M sailing. Derek.

Sailing at Clapham on the 1st April.

April 3, 2012 at 4:01 pm | Posted in News | 1 Comment

Although the sunshine was hot, the wind was not!. We had a fair crowd at the pondside but started late as usual. The wind was very light, varying from nothing to the odd puff, so much so that races often developed into drifting matches. I stayed for the first two races then there appeared to be a break for lunch. The first races had taken so long to complete that I decided to go home, but as I was packing up the wind seemed to improve, as is always the case. I had taken the results of the first races with me but I am beholden to Hugh who sent me the results of the several races that were completed after I had gone. Results as follows-,
Race 1. John, Leslie, Grant
Race 2. Leslie, Derek, John
Race 3. Chris, John, Leslie
Race 4. Leslie, John, Gtant
Race5. John, Leslie, Chris
Race6. Chris, Leslie, John
Race 7. Grant, Leslie, John
Race 8. Leslie, Chris
It seems as though the wind did pick up a bit after I left, but with such a wide spread of winners I wonder wether the results depended on who caught the wind when it did puff, but whether that was the case or not it is nice to see that everyone had win (except me!)
I am told that the starter box has packed up, which is a problem. I believe that we do have another couple of tape decks available although they are limited in output volume, but we shall have to make do with them unless we bite the bullet and purchase a custom built box. The Treasurer might like to have a look at our finances and seek the opinion of Club members, but, as with all these specialist bits of equipment, who will look after it and keep it charged up? We will have to check on the bits we do have and see if they will serve. See you all in a couple of weeks time. Derek.

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