Charlie — 3rd ILCA blog

Saturday 26th June

Today I used my radial, the winds were really light which made it another good opportunity to practice roll tacking. All the other laser sailors had full rigs on today (an even bigger sail than my radial). This meant that they were quicker than me and I was not able to keep up with them. As the winds were so light, I probably could have used a full rig today which would have meant that I would have been able to keep up with all the other lasers who had full rigs on. I do get a handicap, but it would be nice to race alongside them. A handicap is a scoring system that compensates for the different size sails. Although I might finish behind a full rig laser on the course, once the handicap is calculated, I could have finished ahead of it in the final rankings in my ILCA radial.

Wednesday 30th June

Today was uneventful with the winds being so light that there was not even a race, we got out (just) but had to go back in again after about 20 minutes of bobbing. Most of us paddled or stood up and pumped our sails to get back to the beach. Pumping a sail is when the sailor pulls the boom from 90 degrees towards the stern to pull the boat forward.

Saturday 3rd July.

Today was looking very windy with 15 knots of wind, gusting 20! I did not feel confident with using a radial sail, so I put my 4.7 on instead. I knew this was the right choice as soon as I got out as I was only just able to keep the ILCA upright. After the first race, most people went back in but I had managed to keep myself dry and so I stayed out. The second race reduced from 11 boats to just 4 of us. The wind had also calmed down a bit which made a nicer second race. This is a time when I wish I were heavier, if I were, I would have been able to use my radial rig today. More pizza needed!

Wednesday 7th July

This Wednesday, we did not manage to get out as the wind was blowing reasonably strong, at 10-12 knots which made for some big waves breaking onto Sidmouth beach. Then the wind suddenly completely died, but the waves stayed the same. This would have made it very difficult to get out of the beach and probably would have not been very exciting as we would have just been bobbing over the waves. Bring on some wind for Saturday racing!


Sidmouth Sailing Club, The Port Royal, The Esplanade, Sidmouth EX10 8BG