Saturday, October 31, 2009


There has been some talk about Saving Sailing ---and I don’t know?

Friday evening, two old guys and two grandmothers, sailed four Lasers down to the Eustis Park that is on the water. It was a Halloween celebration there. We talked to people on shore, blasted around on the big puffs coming down the hill and through the trees. Awed by the double rainbow over the City (the people on shore couldn’t see it.) and then the Sun went down on the west shore in a mass of clouds that turned all colors and reflected in the lake. Great evening and we are going for a moon light sail this coming Tuesday night. Bring your flash light.

If you want to save sailing, get busy and do it!

Bring people out. You can do it.

You can even sail Lasers double in International races. Rule 7 a.

When I was sailing Lasers in Key West, we had a "how many people can a Laser hold" contest. It was about ten. Not very big people. They got on together. One from each side, very carefully. We stopped when there was no place for the next one to sit.

When we got off, one jumped first and the whole thing turned over. Two is plenty in the crew.

If you are determined to save sailing , buy one of those 100 foot boats and put 50 of your friends and neighbors on the rail to hold the thing down. Don’t forget the matching uniforms with the company logo on the pocket.

OR, you can take that money and start a community sailing program. Optis, Lasers, 420s, or J24s your choice. If your budget is pinched, get those Vanguard Pram copies of the Opti. They have solid floatation and you can use them for your women’s program and even adult racing.

When you are sharing boats, the old retired guys can sail during the week. In Eustis, Friday is Grandmother’s day. And you can bring grandchildren if you want. Five year old Alex steers and barks orders. Grandmother trims the sheet.

Share boats if you need to. One can sail in the Saturday races and the other in Sunday racing. OK, if we have four owners then Saturday morning races, Saturday afternoon racing , Sunday morning races and Sunday after noon racing.

Before we needed to "Save Sailing" , we built our own wood boats. Snipes, Lightning, Stars. Yes, I had a friend that built his own Star. The Snipes were 15 ½ feet long, so they could be built with the 16 foot planks that were standard at that time. I sailed at a place where the Lightning Fleet worked together and built three boats every winter for a few years. When they cut out a piece, they stacked up the wood and cut out three.

Build your own boat now... The Cape Cod Frosty doesn’t come in plastic. I built one. It can’t be too hard.. You end up sailing on your knees most of the time and that needs some practice.

Try the PD Racer (Puddle Duck Racer). They are easier to build and if you leave a little more freeboard, they will carry a lot.

The Lasers are sailing in 122 countries. Nobody ever did that before. (Well, maybe Optimist prams which are showing up all over.) If you don’t mind fiberglass, stick with the Laser.

The Optis had some international regatta in Europe a couple of years ago and 400+ boats came.

DON’T get depressed because all those folks that take sailing lessons don’t turn into Olympic sailors. I have a 50 year old friend that took SAILING 101 in college. He has been doing other stuff till now. He dusted off the rust and is racing with us. He bought two Lasers (one for his 19 year old son).

Check down below in the blog for LASERS FUNDAMENTAL RULE 2 REGATTA (Sorry it is a couple of pges back.) and our " First Annual World Championship Fundamental Rule 2 Regatta" complete with contestants pictures and THE RULES....

The Second Annual World Championship Fundamental Rule 2 Regatta will be coming up soon at Lake Eustis Sailing Club.

Come and join in. We will loan you a boat and find a life jacket for you in the lost and found. BUT READ THE RULES first. — strictly enforced by our international jury.

Friday, October 30, 2009


See SAILING WITH A BUDDY, two days ago.

This is another one that maybe I don't know anything about. Only read or heard a little about. Maybe we will get a little help from outside.. That said:

First we need to get two boat even in speed. We need marks on the boats that are comparable --like inch or millimeter marks on outhaul, mast where bottom of the sail comes, aft end of the sheet. How to mark the vang?

Then try to sail the boats up wind two boat lengths apart and bow to bow. Helms to try to keep that distance. If you can get the boats to sail even for 3 or so minutes, then switch helms and do it again.

If you can get them even, then try to start changing settings or sails on just one. Change only one thing at a time. Any change in speed should to repeatable so do it 3 or 4 times to be sure.

I don't know that anyone has done this in Lasers, but they must have tried. It will just take two people with a lot of time.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


This is the start of the 505 race in San Francisco. Picture poorly stolen from the recent Sailing World. You can see the "pathfinder" (rabbit) on port tack closehauled and closely followed by the committee motor flying their flag (hard to see). The boats on Starboard cross behind the motor boat to start. A good way to start a large aggressive fleet with out a lot of recalls.

Informal rabbit races start with just the rabbit starting from the leeward mark (helps to have whistle or some sound signal saying this is the start.). The other boats line up along the port tack lay line and start by passing behind the rabbit. As soon as everyone has passed behind the rabbit can continue in the race to the windward mark. If you lack a committee boat, everyone takes their own finishes at the agreed on place.

This takes a little practice to find the spot along the lay line and you need to explain before going out on the water to those that don't understand the rabbit thing.

A more informal rabbit thing is just to tell the slowest boat "you are the rabbit" and get them started up wind and everyone else just join in behind.

Happy, chase the rabbit.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Sailing in company with a friend or a buddy.
1) He can encourage you to get out. Maybe you, him?
2) Speed testing-- worth a couple of blogs.
3) Tacking drills. Help each other.
4) Rabbit practice races. -- another blog and I thought I was running out of topics.
5) Share trips to regattas.
6) Match racing practice.
7) Can do all the solo practice things plus these.
8) Help each other increase in smarts. What you can do better show him/her how. If he/she is better, pay attention and get yourself better.
9) Carry out marks if some are not out already.
10) Help you if you get in trouble-- or you help him.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


If the windward mark is anywhere near the shore, explore the wind along the layline nearest the shore.

As the wind comes over a shore, it is turned perpendicular to the shore line. You should be able to find a big header at the shore.

If the header is there, the first one to get to it should round the mark first.

File under "you need to get out and sail the course before the race."

Monday, October 26, 2009


In fleet racing try to sail the course.

A clear lane.

Wind shifts, foot to the headers.

Favored side.

Sail to the pressure.

Stay out of the corners.

Delay to the layline.

AVOID COVERING AND MATCH RACING unless on the short beat to the finish or the last race in a big series. If you get sailing against one other boat, the others will eat you up.

Friday, October 23, 2009


Eating bad air is slow. Near the weather mark go for clean air the last 50 yards, even if you are not on the favored tack.

Fast is better.


Lasers can slow up to get ahead in several ways.

1. On port tack upwind in windy condition, to go behind a starboard tacker, luff and wait for them to almost cross. Then trim and go. Avoid the hard bare off and then trim in again to get around them.

2. If in a header and pinned by the boat to windward, slow up, drop back and tack on the favored wind shift. Now you will be leading them to the next header, you hope.

3. Rounding the downwind mark with someone just overlapping outside, slow up to prevent them from trying to cross over to the inside.

4. If on the outside slow up to get behind, or to cross over and try for inside.

5. Downwind and just about to blanket and pass the boat in front, slow up and wait for the finish line or the mark to be rounded, or you will be changing places and now they will be blanketing you.

When going up wind, slowing is easy, just ease the sheet. Going downwind zigzag course is best. You keep speed up and get behind. Sometimes you will get caught between boats. Now it is trim in the sail and slide to the back of the cockpit to drag the stern. You need to practice all of that stuff.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


My friends up north are finishing up the Summer Sailing and the south fellows are just shaking off the hot Summer. So what about the NEW LASER SEASON.

In the March 2009 Sailing World, Wally Henry suggests EIGHT steps to a better season.

1) SAIL A LOT. Maybe some of us need to look for a frostbite group. Do as much as you can. Regular practice or just get out and sail around. The more the better.

2) SAIL WITH PEOPLE BETTER THAN YOU. Faster sailors--nobody better than you! See what the faster sailors do. Ask questions.

3) SAIL WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT AS GOOD AS YOU. Now help them. Nothing helps like trying to instruct. You will find you are looking up "how to do things" and practicing to get better.

4) USE YOUR MULTIMEDIA. Read the Internet stuff. Maybe all the old stuff here and Proper Course etc.

5) IMPROVE YOUR FITNESS. You can do that in the North as well as the South.

6) COMPETE IN OTHER TEAM SPORTS. Well, maybe Laser sailing is not much of a team sport. Just sail some more, if you can't think of something to do.

7) SAIL IN DIFFERENT POSITIONS. This one is for the big boat guys, but Lasers move around. Light wind, get up forward and down to lee. Then move back smoothly for the roll tack.
Planing in the high winds, get back on the "transom". Roll back and forth as you go through the waves upwind.

8) LEARN THE RULES. Up north you can work on that this Winter. Try to involve your group. It helps if others know the rules also.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Fleet racing and boats are crossing a lot.

If you are going upwind and want to go the other way, don't wait for the crossing. Tack and lead the other boat to the next "header".

On port tack, if you want to keep going, unless you are clearly crossing ahead: several boat lenths away, some vang on, bear off, ease some sheet and accelerate past their stern--expect a lift from the backwind just after the stern. Carry the lift and the speed back to close hauled.

On starboard and you want to keep going. Anybody almost passing you, call to them to sail through. You don't want them to try to tack below you into a lee bow position.
Otherwise you want to bear off a little. Not "hunting" but still closehauled, bow down and sailing fast. Now if they tack under you, you will be able to sail a little higher and carry your speed to sail over them and through the backwind area.

If you are on port tack, near but not at the lay line, you may want to duck the starboard person and tack later. The next time you meet you will be on starboard.

Read the LOOK DOWN ON LASERS put in yesterday. The good guys sail faster when they are near other boats.

Don't forget to get that tacking down good.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


In the May 2008 Sailing World, Gary Jobson reported on watching races from the up high in some sort of airplane.

Noted was the importance of getting up to speed at the start. The last 20 seconds he said in the big boats. In the Laser it would be the last 5 seconds.

He noted that wind shadows affected more boats than he had thought before. The worst blanketing effects extended from the stern to about 5 boat lengths to leeward.

On short windward-leeward courses boats were constantly approaching each other. As they approached each other, the most disciplined, upwind sailed lower and faster, and downwind higher and faster. The boats moving the fastest seemed to come out of most of these encounter the best.

Soooo, get out of the gate in the first 5 seconds, watch the folks to windward for wind shadows, and when anyone is around be sure you are sailing a little extra fast.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Yesterday while I was writting up the BLOG, we had Lasers rigging to go out. They called me on the phone, "how come you are not here putting your boat in?" ( Pretty soon I am going to stop this daily blog and get back to sailing more.) But we have had more wind the past two days and a few people sailing, but avoiding the gybes.

Come on gang, when we are practicing get the gybes in.

When the wind is up the problem of the sheet catching on the transom disappears as the boom goes across so fast the sheet doesn't get pulled aft. Be going fast. You don't want the sail to be loaded up. You do need to get the S turn in. That is a turn back down wind after the boom goes over, so you are not caught beam reaching.

I have been doing it with the boom out about 60 to 70 degrees, so I don't have to turn so far to get the boom over. Then with a little heel away from the boom, turn with AUTHORITY, cross over quickly as the boom comes across and head back down wind. With AUTHORITY, I mean don't let the turn stop half way. Keep it going.

Steve Cockerill in the "boat whisperer" says to drop the sheet a little so that the boat heels away from the boom, then use the rudder to stabilize the boat and make the turn. He straightened the rudder to initiate the boom coming over. His illustrations are all about turning at a gybe mark on a triangular course. A little different for the windward leeward.

So, humor Steve, if you have trouble getting some heel away from the boom, drop a little sheet.

Tacking, gybing, starts, mark roundings, etc, etc all need to be practiced. Stop reading the dam blogs and get out in the boat.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


I want to thank Tillerman for the note on Proper Course .. I had a visit from Australia and for some reason that was fun. Then what do I care who is following all this stuff. Pretty soon I will have written all I know, except I keeping learning more junk. The hardest part now is try not to repeat myself too much. What happens to all this blog in 10 years? Will we be writting on top of ourselves? BUT TODAY was the LASERS LOOK UP!

OK, look up at the sail. Speed wrinkles begin to develop from clew to mast joint. This is supposed to be good and shows the sail has the right shape and develops more as you bend the mast more (pressure from the sheet or vang). As they get deeper pull on a little Cunny (for Briggs Cunningham who first set it up) and iron them out.

Where is the draft? Mid sail or the forward third is where it should be. Is it creeping aft? Pull on a little more Cunny.

Draft is more in the mid and upper sections with less at the peak and at the foot. Change your outhaul and see what happens. Adjust the vang (kicker in case this is read in other countries) and the Cunny.

Twist? How straight is the leach? Tight for pointing. Pull the sheet toward 2 block or set up some vang and watch it change. Tight leach for pointing and flat water. More twist for waves.


Shucks, I am old and have trouble looking around anywhere. the good folks are doing the looking. So look. Maybe some of the smarter people will tell us what to look for.

Maybe I will get my marker out and draw in some trim strips so I can see better. Anyone have them on your Laser?

While you are looking up, how about the clouds. More about that when I figure it out.

Saturday, October 17, 2009



Yes, at the finish there is the zone at both ends of the line.
So a port tack boat coming in at the pin end can't peel a windward boat off at the pin, but needs to give him "mark room".
AND starboard tack boat coming in to the boat end of the line can't peel a windward boat off at the boat. Give them "mark room".
NOW you know as much about the rules as I do.

Friday, October 16, 2009


Everyone has been asking for a better picture of me...So here it is with me sailing my Laser alongside a friend.


Two days ago here in Florida, we were discussing inside at the zone and stuff like that.. So here is what you need to do (according to Sam).

In a marginal overlap near the down wind mark, the person inside asks the outside boat, "do I have the overlap". (On a bigger boat the helm on the ahead boat has the best view.) If he replies "Yes and I am giving you mark room." That solves that problem.

If he says "No overlap", just turn down behind him/her, and get ready in case they mess up the mark rounding.

If you are the inside boat and have a pretty good overlap, be sure to tell the outside person. He may be thinking about something else or looking the other way.

If you are the boat ahead and you are near the zone, you can volunteer the information. "Overlap and giving room" or "No overlap, stay out." We need to do some talking back and forth before the zone, not as two or three boats or more are trying to get around it together.

At the windward mark, the zone in only good for two situations, both port tack. The starboard tack guys have automatic, windward boat keeps clear-- nothing new there.

If two or more overlaped port tack boats are coming into the zone, the windward ones can claim "mark room" and not get scrapped off on the buoy.

If the port tack boats meet any starboard tackers in the zone, they have to be careful tacking in front or below them, because if after they tack, the starboard folks have to do something to miss them, the tacking ones have committed a foul. This is a rule to try and clean up the windward mark roundings, especially for larger boats.

So talk to you friends on the other boats. AND if Sam is there, speak up. The old guy is a little deaf.

Is there a zone at the mark on the finish line? I will look it up, and tell you tomorrow.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Tillerman (of PROPER COURSE) reads this blog at least some of the time so this is "less" stuff for him.

For the rest of you, pick your favorite two word mantra.












Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Neuroscientist Jules Jung Beema showed that people in good moods had 20 % increase in word puzzle solving skill. Better than cranky and depressed people.

He speculates that the prefrontal cortex and the ACC are not preoccupied with managing the emotional life and better able to help with the quick action emotional decisions.


Try it-- up early, breakfast, check list, smile, laugh, sing and dance a little as you get the boat in the water.

Let me know how it works!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


What happens when the brain has a lot of training?

1973 Buddy Melges, "Confessions of a Winner". " I love to completely involve my MIND, my body, and all my senses with the boat and her path through the water. I very seldom watch the sails; rather a blank stare at the horizon forward gives me the angle of attack. The jib stay enters and allows me to watch every wave and every bit of wind without interruption."

OK Buddy, we will try that next time out, but if we are not way out in front, we had better look at the sail every now and then and around at the other boats that maybe coming at us.

On an A scow Buddy has a lot of other people to keep track of that stuff.

Monday, October 12, 2009


Your emotional centers in the brain (like the nucleus accumbens) react more quickly than the logical mechanism.

That is the way we hit a baseball or react to sudden changes. You don't debate the good and bad with your cortex and then sleep on it.

The nucleus accmbens send out dopamine to make you feel good--the signal to strike at the ball or to miss the starboard tacker.

The anterior cingulate cortex detects errors and guides changes in the emotional areas like the nucleus accumbens.

So we can train your brain and it will learn to do better for the fast things-- and it works from errors. We learn by making mistakes. Big news? So to train your brain, you need to identify the errors.

Things like leeward mark roundings you can practice before or after racing or on practice sessions. Things like boat crossing, you need large fleet or at least another boat.

So get your brain making dopamine, the happy hormone.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


Racing rules start with the PREPARATORY signal. At Lake Eustis Laser with a three minute sequence, it is the 2 minute signal with the "blue peter" flag (blue with white square in middle). In the Five minute sequence it is at the 4 minute signal..

After that, anytime you hit a mark or committee boat you need to do a penalty - get clear of other boats and do a 360 degree turn with one tack and one gybe.

If you foul another boat, then it is a 720 turn with two tacks and two gybes. If the foul happens before the start, you can do the turns before the start.

You finish by part of your boat going across the finish line. The boat doesn't need to cross the line, but you need to not hit the buoy or the committee boat. If you do then you have to do the 360 turn and recross the line from the course side.

Do your penalty turns-- it proves you are a good person and interested in the game.

After you have finished and not hit the mark, then you can bump into people and the marks again until the next PREPARATORY signal.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Welcome to Sam's rules of the road. (I do this Friday night because I have a little time and this is the blog for Saturday.) I hope you find them easier to use than the rule book, if you are getting started with your sail racing. The red boat is the burdened and the green the go ahead.
I tried to put this note up at the top, but was lucky to get "rules" on in order.


While we are talking about the FUN thing------

A few years ago, sailing coach Skip Whyte, worried that we were often forgetting about the FUN in racing sail boats. Do we still do that some??

We give trophies to the winners, but what about the other folks ( and there are so many of them).

Maybe the answer is Learn to love THE GAME! If you have an old tired boat-- perk it up the best you can and try to pick off as many of the fancy jobs as you can.

If you are being beaten try to understand how and admire that part of the game that is doing it. Become a student of the game, so that you can appreciate all the moves-- and admire the good ones even if you don't do them.

If you are around Eustis, come to our Fundamental Rule 2 Regattas, or the Wednesday night North U. when we talk about "THE GAME".

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Yesterday we had the First Annual Fundamental Rule 2 Regatta and it was a great success. There were three sailors that for the first time sailed the race course. They were out in maybe force 3.5 wind with 4.7 sails. The most wind they had sailed in.

The Fundamental Rule 2 rules were in effect. Youth and women start first and the others later. No roll tack. No roll gybe. First one to the mark rounds first. No shouting. No yelling. The first near finish wait for the others so we all finish together. We help each other get the boats out. Then Pizza, Greek Salad, Spinach pie, Ice Cream and cake.

The down side is that we discovered that some of us wanted to WIN. Or if we didn't today, then next week or next year.

Now we have slipped down that slope to better and better, trying harder and harder.

We will be back to regular racing this weekend, but could have the Second Annual Fundamental Rule 2 thing again anytime.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


For the Sailor that has occasional Laser practices, what should he work at most? The group is long with roll tack, roll gybe, windward mark rounding, by the lee sailing, leeward mark rounding and start practice.

I would pick STARTING to be sure it is included. You need to be able to stop the boat. Hold position and then get rolling. You need to be doing it next to the other sailors in your group. You need to be doing it as good or better than them. You have to have a handle on the timing.
It will be different in each wind and wave combination.

It is probably more complicated than the other projects above.

Maybe it is what Elstrom meant by you like to play with your boat.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


In 1970 Paul Elstrom said "to be really successful you have to like the boat you are going to race and you have to like playing with the boat. You have to be prepared to alter anything during the race at anytime without taking your eyes away from the race course and the wind and the sea."

So we are back to more serious Laser action. But don't forget yesterdays blog.

Monday, October 5, 2009


Yesterday was all about the year long hard work to sail better. We just had this little episode that I thought might be fun to report here-- to contrast with yesterdays PROFESSIONAL thing. I will change the names and modify it some to protect the innocent.

Wednesday evening our first cold front came in with light wind from the north moving a little northeast after Sam put the marks in.

Our bathrooms, kitchen and tile floor in the club house got a coat of paint Wednesday afternoon. It looks wonderful for the Catamaran regatta this week end, but it (WET PAINT) cancelled the Pizza and North U for this past Wednesday.

We had a good bunch out. Sort of in order of appearance K. K., A. A., N. D., J.R., J. J. and an adult woman student R. C. , all in Lasers and then G. L. and C. R. in the Ray Green Rebel. We had the Tennis Player for the Rebel ride, but she had a look around – then drove off for home. We had some marks out that some used and some didn't. I think everyone had a good time, even during the glassy water before sunset. That glassy water with the magic sailing, when you are moving without any really noticeable wind. I like that getting something for nothing.

I think the gradient wind and then the cool temperatures blocked the sea breezes we usually have that time of day.

The boats got put away as the sun set, the sky and the lake turned red – maybe they just looked red. Great time, you should come for that, even if you don’t do the magic sailing.

This little group had so much fun just sailing the boats without all the advanced rocking and rolling that I am afraid to let them see the Advanced Laser DVD. Instead I think next Wednesday I will hold the First Annual LESC Fundamental Rule 2 Regatta. The Fundamental Rule 2 is "recognized principles of sportsmanship and fair play". Look it up..

Under this program no roll tacks or roll gybes. Women and children go first at the start and the others follow. No arguments at the marks. The first ones go first. No bumping. No shouting. The fast folks wait at the finish line and we all go over together.

We help each other put the boats away and then it is Pizza, Greek salad, Spinach Pie with cake and Ice Cream in honor of whoever has the nearest birthday. M. J. has her 39th coming up the following week. Do we have any others in early October?

If the Fundamental Rule 2 thing is the big hit I expect, we might have the World Championships here at LESC. If the folks that have the patent on the title "World" complain, then we will, like good sports, let them hold it.

You are all invite to join in, MCs, Cs, Scots, Wayfarers, Portsmouth, good sports that we are.

Sunday, October 4, 2009


Ben Tan's book on Laser sailing is the most complete. He covers more topics and branches out around Laser sailing. He covers more things that I don't understand than any of the others.

The last chapter in the book is the "yearly planning instrument" to bring together all the parts of your "get to sail better" stuff.

And he discusses targeting regattas and races and then working up to them with periods of training followed by recovery before the important races.

His signs of "over training"
1) Loss of motivation, fatigue, loss of appetite.
2) Sleep disturbances, insomnia.
3) Elevated heart rate.
4) Weight loss.
5) Increased susceptibility to injures.

These are not really important concept for most club racers. Points out the different world that full time Laser sailors live in. I don't know that I would call them "professional". Hard to get paid to sail a Laser.

Saturday, October 3, 2009


The October Sailing World has an article by John Loe about hiking -- mostly keel boats-- but includes tests and measurements and lots of stuff I don't understand, but concludes that hiking is most effective when the boat is flat and as the boat heels then the perpendicular weight gets less, etc.

I am not sure if this is absolutely true in the Laser, because as we begin to heel the center of flotation moves downwind making leaver arm longer---but lots of other things start to get bad.

Sail area perpendicular to the wind starts to get smaller.

Sail area force begins to push down like making the boat heavier.

Blade area starts to get less.

Boat shape starts to turn the boat to windward.

Rudder used to turn the boat back straight starts to drag like a break.

Soooo, the conclusion is to have the "super vang" on before you begin to heel. Then you can hike hard, ease the sheet and stay flat.

Don't forget to pull Cunny on enough to move the draft forward and to get your best out haul setting.

You go fast and that can make up for a lot of stuff. Blades work better. Through the waves faster. Turning easier. Get to the wind shifts sooner. Arrive at the finish line first.

Friday, October 2, 2009


I have some previous material about were to start on the line. Probably worth another note.

At the boat end you can always tack out for free air or to go to the right.

At the pin end, if the line is square, you have free air. It is the only spot, if the line is full, with free air. Everyone else will be getting back wind or suffering from a lee bow person just below them. The bad thing is that you are stuck for a little while on starboard going left. The place to be if you want to go left.

In the middle there is usually a sag. Not as crowded. So you have a better chance of getting a good run at the line and speed at the start. You will have a little better chance of getting over to port tack than the people near the pin.

Often the conservative start is toward the middle from the favored end.

A lot is going to depend on your boat handling. Can you stop? Can you hold your position? Can you get going at full speed quick? Can you time the whole thing so you are at the line at full speed at the start?

If you start late? Maybe best at the boat, but get going as soon as you can.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


We may have covered this before, but this past week we had a couple of jams at the pin, when we had a big left wind shift before the start.

Is it safe to be on starboard at the pin in a big left shift? .. Probably not .

1) You will be going the wrong way.

2) If the shift is big you will have trouble getting by the mark.

3) If you get by the mark, you will probably be pinned by the other starboard tackers on your stern quarter. You will be waiting for them to tack.

4) Try coming across on port-- take some sterns. You will be going the "right" way and ready for the shift back.