Friday, 26 November 2010

Waiting for winter

Last weekend before the boat goes to Sydney and its cold here, cold as in stick your tongue to a metal post cold, (don't ask how I found out) as in 1 degrees in the day cold. In these temperatures you have to look at your hand to see if you are holding the mainsheet and at 16 knots upwind thats a wind chill of minus 6.

Still the boys were out yesterday which proves if nothing else that mad dogs and English men don't just go out in the mid day sun. Not me I'm afraid. When you cant even smile because your face is so cold, well imagine not smiling when you are up there on the foils...

But it gave me time to think as I watched. I thought about the new solid Wing and its place in the class. Possibly its not my place to comment either, but from what I've seen for some reason they remind me of a Zepplin, those beautiful airships that graced the skys in the 1920's. They, just like the Wing were graceful and silent up there in the clouds but ungainly, awkward and at the mercy of the weather when on land. This lead me to think that the Wings are somehow mournful, in the same way Eeyore is mournful in Winnie the Pooh. With this thought I warmed to them immensely, for if nothing else they have character, which I like.

Last Saturday was good and I nailed my tacking which was one thing to tick off the list. I'd been meaning to get around to it for a while, as previously I tacked like a lame duck. Not a metaphorical duck either but one that had stepped on a land mine or something. Anyway I'm pleased about that and gym work is going well too. I believe in the gym and good preparation. These events are won well before hand, in the gym or out in the boat or what ever you do, but in any event a long way before we dance under those lights.


Friday, 19 November 2010

Breaking and entering

I'm just filling in the entry form for the worlds, a job I traditionally hate, largely because you have to part with money.

You can tell a lot from the entry form about the quality of the event actually. I completed one the other day which had the question "In case of emergency who should we call..? The answer of course being a "Doctor" but if they cant even figure that out what chance have they got of getting the windward mark in the right place?

But this one seems a good one although I don't know what "MNA number" means, but given I've got a new credit card its a great way to remember the pin.

The wing debate rages and if we are seemingly and sadly unable to change any rules as the NOR has been issued I see that those winging it are all buggered, which is a shame.

It's due to sail numbers and if we are now calling the first element of the wing the err "mast" then the sail numbers have to go on the sail or the "tiny little bit behind the mast" as it should now be known

Try getting AUS 3876 or whatever on that legally. (You might just squeeze GBR 1 on it though..;-)

Aside from that I cant wait to race. I feel great, am fit, have some pace and I've always said that its the duty of the Champion to defend. I am in debt to Abarth and KA Sail for their continued support.

Friday, 12 November 2010

Black Deaths Wing

All has been looted, betrayed, sold; black death's wing flashed ahead....

I saw these poetic words in a book as I came back from the Abarth party in London on Thursday night.

There is a lot of worry about the wing. The ability to wait until we have enough information in order to make a decision seems to be the least popular option as it seems people would rather have "bad certainty" rather than "uncertainty" in order to get it sorted out now.

Anyway at the worlds I thinks its a big risk to use one, but one which may pay off...

I do believe though that in order to have an opinion people need to:-

1. Attend regatta's so they can see the class as it is today. Sorry guys but you cant get an accurate digital impression from your study as you wait patiently for another "innovation" to set. Its very different to how it was even two years ago.

2. People need to understand the class constitution. Rules have been discussed this week but its the constitution that's more important than we all think.

So what is the Moth constitution? Well its a set of laws that people before us have made that define our principles as a class. The class rules sit under them and in effect are limited by them,

The first constitution is:- To encourage the development of the International Moth Class, and the establishment of National Associations in all Countries.

The second one is:- promote and encourage racing of International Moths.

Going forward only the above should be used as the key go/no go check points. Right now you can argue either way although I'm sure it will come to a vote.

And I like votes! And in particular the instruction....."Please put your ex in a box!"

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

The News at Ten

Finally back on the water last weekend after recovering from injury. Earlier last week my shoulder was injected with steroids. The pain has now gone thankfully, but not before I all but fainted in Tesco's an hour after the injection as my body went "what's that stuff?" Where to faint was another issue, its not a faint friendly store actually but the clothing aisle at least had carpets.

On any Sunday! Club racing at HISC. All photo's courtesy of Chris Bashall

Anyway great to do a couple of club races last weekend and it was lovely to see so many Moths out. Its a good time of year to sail at HISC actually. The harbour is empty of yachts and feels big again and its still warm enough to have fun. Anyway although rusty it was nice to come away with a couple of bullets, one by the skin of my teeth after great racing with Mike Lennon.

I was using the new KA MSL10 C for the first time. I've always been a fan of the ten and I've used the 10B exclusively this year. This new iteration by Andrew I think takes it to the next level. It has a slightly higher clew which makes manoeuvres easier , zips on the luff for easier cam location and some luff curve and seam improvements. As a result it looks great and goes really well! I noticed that I could get the top to open a bit easier as the breeze built with the second batten down looking sweeter than on the earlier sail.

I was using the Mach 2 medium mast and felt fast upwind on Saturday against the others. Sunday I found I could also sail consistently fast and low downwind.