REGATTA CHECKLIST

For those of us travelling interstate or overseas for National or World championships I have set out below a checklist to help you get packed for the regatta.

Good luck, go out there and sail fast and smart but above all have fun and learn heaps.

Essential stuff

□             Notice of race

□             Sailing instructions

□             Rulebook and class rules

□             Appeals book

□             Charts of racing area

□             Money/cheque book/credit cards

□             Rating/measurement certificate

□             Class membership card

□             AUS Sailing membership card

□             Your personal racing notebook 

Car and trailer

□             Trailer registration

□             Car registration and insurance

□             Spare tire for trailer

□             Trailer license plate

□             Wheel Nut spanner that fits trailer

□             Extra wheel bearings for trailer

□             First aid kit/safety items

□             Extra key taped under car

□             Road maps/directions

□             Plane tickets

Personal items

□             Water bottles to bring on boat

□             Cooler and frozen ice packs

□             Hiking pants

□             trapeze harness

□             Hiking boots

□             Sunglasses

□             Sunblock lotion

□             Hats/visors

□             Sailing gloves

□             Life jacket

□             Wet weather gear

□             Stopwatch and spare watch        

Boat preparation gear

□             Ditty bag

□             Tool box and extras

□             Spare rigging and blocks

□             Lifting bridle

□             Boat cover(s)/sail bags

□             Masthead fly

□             Extra corrector weights

□             Wet/dry sandpaper

□             2 protest flags/I flag

□             Class identification flag 

Sailing things

□             Mainsail and spare(s)

□             Jib or genoa and spare(s)

□             Spinnaker and spare(s)

□             Sheets, spinnaker pole, etc.

□             Rudder, tiller, daggerboard

□             Battens (heavy and light air)

□             Bucket, bailer, sponge

□             Required safety equipment

□             Tow Rope

□             Compass

Miscellaneous stuff

□             Roll of paper towels

□             Plastic cups, plates, utensils

□             Wet/dry hand wipes

□             Garbage bags/sandwich bags

□             Snacks (e.g. granola bars)

□             CDs/tapes for trip

□             Bug spray/lotion

I am sure there may be other items that are specific to you and your boat but the list above is a great start.

HOW TO GET PUBLICITY FOR YOUR NEXT SAILING REGATTA

Sailing has always been tricky to get across to the spectator but now TackTracker can show every spectator what all the sailors know …. and more!
 
The spectator can be at the hosting clubhouse’s bar or restaurant, at home, the office, down the road in a cafe or even on another continent.
 
Coaches, sports lovers, friends, family and sailors researching their competition or sussing out the local conditions for the regatta they’ll be sailing in soon all love it.
 
TackTracker’s ability to bring the sport to the spectator means spectators now exceed many thousands for any significant event
 
TackTracker’s analytical features also add to the spectator experience.  Spectators now understand what happened to their boat of interest out on the course  but also all the other boats in the race.  They now know the what’s, why’s and how’s!

Races can be embedded almost anywhere – on yacht club’s sites, sponsor’s sites, yacht class’ sites, local council sites, etc. 

The lucky sponsors can have their logo on the races and a direct link to their site or a chosen landing page so that every time a replay is watched the sponsors logo and contact details are displayed again.  

Considering the number of spectators TackTracker attracts, the number of races and the number of times races are replayed by spectators and competitors, this amounts to great exposure and a direct path to a sponsor.  As a bonus this publicity is for eternity.

Ask your next sponsor if they will enable TackTracker-ing at your next regatta and make it a win-win.
 
Australian and New Zealand Distributor
Sailing To Win

Brett Bowden
Telephone Australia: 0417 005755
Telephone International: +61 417 005755

brett@sailingtowin.com
www.sailingtowin.com

 
International Inquiries
TackTracker

Greg Seers
Telephone Australia: 0402 302403
Telephone International:+61 402 302403

sales@tacktracker.com

 

 European Distributor

SailRacer Simon Lovesey
info@sailracer.co.uk
www.sailracer.org

Racing in Big Fleets

With national championships and annual long distance races fast approaching we need to turn our mind to sailing in bigger fleets than we have been racing in all year.

Racing in big fleets requires a number of different disciplines to think about and master. In general you can take more risks in a small fleet and if you make a mistake you are not likely to lose many boats.

There tends to be more highly skilled sailors in bigger fleets, a faster pace and less opportunities to carry out your strategic plan so you need to adjust your strategies and tactics accordingly.

Some important considerations in big fleets are –

  • Be conservative, in a big fleet there are many other boats which influence your sailing so that you are often forced to take tactical decisions over strategic decisions. A conservative approach means not going for the best position or the best strategy but always being close to it, accept small mistakes or small disadvantages to avoid major mistakes. In the regatta, you may not  win every race  but by being conservative you will be able to avoid really bad results and be close to the top in most races. At the end of a series the winner often hasn’t won a single race but was always placed well.
  • Clear Air, this is a no-brainer to any competitive sailor but even more critical in a big fleet. In small fleets it’s much easier to get clear air, which means that more boats will have it but in big fleets, there will be heaps of boats getting slowed down by sailing in dirty air. Don’t be one of them.
  • The Start, there is more chance of a disaster in a big fleet and it is wise to avoid the ends as they are generally more crowded. Try to have space below and above you so that other boats cannot force you to tack away from the side of the course you have chosen. Tacking early can also cause you to lose ground which means losing many boats in a big fleet.
  • Boat Speed, set your boat up for the conditions and line up with a known performer before the start to make sure you have the settings right. You will not be able to win a big fleet regatta if your speed is not at least equal to the one of the top boats plus of course it is also easier to recover after a mistake. A word of warning though, boat speed doesn’t help you if you stuff up your start or sail in dirty air for a long time

The best preparation for sailing in a big fleet is to race in big fleets but this is not always possible so there are ways of training to prepare yourself.

When you are out practicing with other boats, simulate the big fleet by staying close together and also learn how to sail in dirty air. With a small practice fleet using a really short line is a good way to practice a big fleet start giving you plenty of boats in close proximity.

Train at holding lanes of clear air and practice how to stay in the windward position of a boat that is going high.

Learn how to go for speed to pace it with fast boats around you and get in the habit of putting the bow down a couple of degrees to get the water flowing over the foils thus generating lift.

Learn how to adapt to each situation and the sailing styles of boats and helmsmen around you, doing this helps you to hold your lane for a long time but also teaches you what you need to do when you drop in a leeward boat or get gassed by a boat that has come out from under your lee bow.

These are all situations that you will encounter regularly in big fleets so instinctively knowing what to do will ensure that you make to right split second decision every time.

 

 

How To Prepare for Unstable Conditions

Regattas generally bring with them diverse wind conditions, so crews need to be prepared to handle whatever the venue hands out. 

Researching the most up-to-date forecasts, in combination with understanding the venue is absolutely critical in preparing for success on race day. Although it is great to speak to the locals about what to expect and by all means take this into account, but do your own research as well.

How many regattas have you been at only to hear the locals say, “its not normally ever like this”. What’s worth remembering is that they mostly only sail on weekends so their experience generally does not cover a week long regatta.

In fact if they had done the research they may have found that what you got is exactly what always happens. Having said that local knowledge can be a key weapon when dealing with current and knowing where and when to hide on the course.

Shifting from a heavy building breeze one day then down to light air the next can take a toll on even the best crews and staying connected is essential.

Understand the limits of technology, and as much as it helps, it can also hinder boat awareness so its important for the helmsman and crew to be aware with what is actually going on.

As an example, remember the basics and be aware of what the tell tales are communicating and how the boat feels as conditions shift.

Communicating weight management and sail trim relative to tactics and strategy in varying conditions will help keep the team focused on the impact their individual roles have in the outcome of the race.

Keep fun in the program. and make sure everyone is enjoying the day. 

Dialing the rig and managing the tune as conditions build or diminish will have a direct result on how the boat responds in varying conditions. An important consideration may be the differences between symmetrical and asymmetrical car set-ups to take advantage of favored tacks in chop.

Whether races are in big breeze or light air, it’s important to know and communicate when it’s time to change gears along with changing conditions. Develop a strategy and be aware of what is happening both on the course and in the boat, then adjust as needed.