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US Olympic Sailing Trials - Cheers ‘n Tears

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by US SAILING


It's not supposed to be easy, winning a bid to the Olympic Games in any discipline, but that makes it more satisfying for the winners, if heartbreaking for the losers. So it was in Sunday's climax of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Team Trials – Sailing on the West Coast.


While some winners won comfortably, the Stars and Tornados and---it seemed for a few hours---the women's RS:X sailboards were settled by competitors coming from behind on the last day and winning the last race. But well into the evening the latter result was reversed on a protest that put everyone through an emotional wringer, as if the competition wasn't tense enough. more...


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Annual One-Design Regatta This Weekend at FBYC

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(Deltaville, Va.)- Fishing Bay Yacht Club will hold its 68th annual One-Design Regatta Saturday and Sunday, August 11-12, 2007.

The multiple-race series will take place on three separate race courses. Classes of boats in the races will include Front Runner, Mobjack, Flying Scot, Hampton; Albacore, Laser (& Radial), 420, and Optimist. Additional classes may be added for boats in any dinghy one design class having a national association and chartered fleets.  more...

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More Rules Issues at Marks

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By Dick Rose

Some readers have written me recently asking questions about how the rules cover some situations that crop up frequently at marks.  Answering them gives me the opportunity to stress some of the important ideas that you should keep in mind as you approach a mark.

Tom Keane asked how, at the finishing line, the rules apply to sprit boats that sail hot angles when on a leeward leg. Imagine a close finish with six Melges 24s charging downwind toward a long finishing line. more...



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Casual Observations on Med Moorings

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By Tom Beard

Cruising the Mediterranean is an experience of delight and frustration. Being first in and tied off then watching the rest of the fleet arrive is perhaps one of the world's greatest spectator sports. The following tales are real, though to some, they might smack of nationalistic stereotyping and a vivid imagination. It may be only a coincident that these nationalistic traits seem to consistently repeat themselves. These are just stories of multi-national cruisers arriving to "Med tie" to the same rock wall on a small Greek island village.

As the bright sun reaches the mastheads on boats parked in the west part of the harbor, the flood of boats surge to quaysides in Mediterranean ports all seeking that beam-width of space along the stone walls. This daily shuffle of "Med Mooring" requires some nautical skill and some international diplomacy. What actually takes place is something else.  more...



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Changes in Racing Sails and Sailmaking

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North's 3DL technology may lead the grand prix market, but other sailmakers have worked hard to developed their own laminate-sail technology. An in-depth look at the state of the art of sailmaking.

By John Burnham and Tony Bessinger

Racing sails made of laminated materials have been the choice of leading-edge racers for nearly a quarter century. These sails, assembled from panels built of high-strength fibers sandwiched within plastic film, have continued to evolve, and the recent trend has been to design the sail first, then make each section of laminate, or the entire sail, with the expected loads of the sail in mind. In this area, North Sails' 3DL process is the clear market leader among bigger boats. For many sailmakers, existing patents have slowed development of customized lamination for these newer "membrane" sails (sometimes called "load-path" or "string" sails); but with the nine-year Sobstad vs. North lawsuit settled (in 2001) and relevant patents due to expire soon, there's been a spate of manufacturing news.  more...



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The Canadian Connection

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By Dave Reed

If you had to take a guess at which one-design keelboat class you'll find at all nine of Sailing World's Sperry Top-Sider NOOD Regatta stops, it shouldn't take you long.

OK, ready…go.

Ding.

Time's up.

It's the J/105, which has become as much a fixture on the NOOD circuit as its coveted red hats and nightly buffet lines. Whatever it is about this boat—its simplicity, its pennywise owners, or its low crew demand—the racing is typically close, from the front to the back of the fleet. All of this, says Doctor James—or Jim to friends and fellow sailors—Rathbun, is why the 35-footer has been his boat of choice for the past seven years. And what great times he and his mates have had with it on their home waters of Lake Ontario. They've had plenty of great results, too, including five Canadian Championship wins, and last month, the overall title at the Sperry Top-Sider Toronto NOOD.  more...



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Olympic shootout for Athens blondes

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Sarah Webb (left), Shirley Robertson (centre), Sarah Ayton (right)By Rob Hodgetts
 
Remember the "three blondes in a boat" from the Athens Olympics?

Three years ago the glamorous trio were on top of the world.

But now, Britain's Yngling gold medallists face a tense shootout among themselves.

And at least one of their Olympic careers could sink in the process.  more...



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The Vang: How Much is too Much?

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By Dirk Schwenk

The 2007 Parramore was sailed in 15-20 knots, with puffs going above that.  We had plenty of breeze, plenty of waves, some wake and with 9 windward leewards in 2 days, plenty of opportunities to improve our performance to windward in a breeze.  Onshore we had lots of talk about how to set up for speed in the situations, and lots of talk about use of the boom vang.  more...



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Job is the wind in his sails

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As summer jobs go, 15-year-old Brian Guilbert's is a cool breeze.

His place of employment is underneath the clouds and on top of an inland sea. There are no supervisors hovering around to tell him what to do - except for maybe the waves and the wind.

Such is work for Guilbert, who last summer became one of the youngest individuals the Milwaukee Community Sailing Center has ever hired as an instructor.  more...



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Fog Fails to Foil Racers

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Fog mixed with rain dampened the air but not the racing atmosphere at the Storm Trysail Club's Block Island Race Week XXII presented by Rolex. After yesterday's around-the-island race, the event's 2000 sailors competing on 183 boats were anxious to get back to buoy racing to add bulk to their score lines. Though the southwest winds generally blew lightly, the race committee managed two races for 17 of 18 classes on three courses: White (One-Design), Red (IRC) and Blue (PHRF).

Though the first-ever Rolex US-IRC National Championship will be decided this week, competition in the one-design classes is every bit as intense. more...



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The 2007 Solo Mac Challenges

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sails on chicago skylineBy Tony Driza

The Great Lakes Singlehanded Society will be sanctioning the simultaneous running of the 29th Port Huron to Mackinac and the 11th Chicago to Mackinac Solo Challenges on June 23, 2007. These two events represent one-half of the membership granting challenges of the GLSS – any first-time finisher of the event earns a lifetime membership in the Society.

The Solo Challenges bring out the ultimate in both boat and skipper – they require a skipper who must manage not only the racecourse, but also the sometimes demanding weather conditions, vessel upkeep, and last but certainly not least, the skipper himself.

More Info about the Challenges



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Etchells World Championship 2007 - Preview

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This week Etchells sailors from Italy, Australia, Sweden, Ireland, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Bermuda, the USA and Britain are congregating at the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Cowes in preparation for the 2007 Etchells World Championship.

Forty-six of the world's top sailors, who have all been required to qualify to represent their countries, will be battling it out in the central Solent for the right to claim the Etchells World title - one of the most prestigious in international sailing.

Leading the overseas charge and among the hot favourites is current World Champion Jud Smith from Marblehead, USA. Jud and his crew of David McClintock and Steve Girling will be using a boat chartered from Cowes based Etchells builder David Heritage and will be out on the water this week tuning up and making final equipment selections.
more...



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The Learning Curve

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By Brian Bissell

Jumping into a new class can be overwhelming. Every boat has its quirks and it takes awhile to learn all the tuning tricks. What I have found to be the best way to make your learning curve steeper, is to ask tons of questions to people already successful in the boat. When you have their answers and an insight to their individual style of sailing the boat, it is paramount that you go out on the water and try it out for yourself.  more...



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The Collision

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By Mark Matthews

We’d had a decent start. It wasn’t one of our best--some our starts that season had been of the text book superb caliber, but neither had the start left us at the back of the pack. We emerged somewhere in the middle, and with a little work and luck, there was the thinking that we could make it up. The adrenaline subsided as we left the starting line. Hulls, sails, grinding winches and yelling crew opened up to a vista of palm tree lined cliffs and blue ocean in the late afternoon sun. The fleet split on its way to the top mark. Some boats opted to head in to smoother waters along the shore, while others, like ourselves were looking for more breeze further offshore. more...



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Beneteau First 50

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By Tony Bessinger
 
For its latest, and biggest First series design to date, Beneteau asked French designer Philippe Briand to use some of his larger designs such as Mari-Cha III and IV, and sleek megayachts such as Hamilton and Gliss, as inspiration. But Beneteau didn't stop there; they also partnered with Italy's Nauta Design, which specializes in maxi-yacht interior and exterior styling and design. With two such parties involved, it's no surprise that the First 50 is one of the sharpest looking 50-foot production boats on the planet.  more...
 


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