Though we have been discussing much about downwind sailing and ways to go fast, based on our experience the big money in sailing is on the runs, so there is always room for more gains to be made.
When we go sailing, the boat may just push water out of the way (usually called displacement mode), ride on top of its own bow wave (planing) or foil. This week we look at how water resistance effects boatspeed, and what we can do to minimise this resistance.
It is truly incredible the number of projects we have worked on where the sailors do not know how to recognise headers and lifts. When we ask them what happened to the wind during a training run, they can get it very wrong, and when we ask them what happened during a race, their impression is often at odds with reality, and completely wrong.
The sailing world is going foiling mad. Time alone will tell whether it's a good thing or not, but what we can say is that it's fun and fast, and very different in feeling. What is the same for the sailor is that we need to understand a far greater range of sail settings in order to optimise the performances of these boats.
In competitive sailing we are looking for every advantage we may get if we want to win and going fast is a pretty important advantage to have - the gains from using the correct sails are more than just marginal!.
Coaching has evolved a massive amount since 1990. Yes, there were coaching courses of sorts back than, but somehow you'd spend three days on a course and come away with one useful nugget of information that would improve your coaching skills. Now a days information is so readily accessible that you can gain enough information to be a good coach in a very short time. What you can't get is experience.
Throughout the history of sailing it is rarely the fastest sailor that wins a series, In most conditions it is necessary to be fast to win but that's not all. Winning takes many disciplines to master, a crucial one is the ability to observe your surroundings.
We sail, we want to sail fast, and the only thing stopping us sailing faster is drag. Drag comes in two main forms. The hull and centreboards creates drag in the water. The Rig creates drag through the air. Water being 1,000 times denser than air by a lot, the drag created by the hull... Continue Reading →