Mittwoch, März 28, 2007

Not much happening at this time of the year

Sailing is not on my agenda at this time of the year. The transition between winter mode and spring mode brings with it a lot of work to catch up on my boats and workshop. The water is way too cold and " Cold Shock is the killer in water below 15 degrees Celsius" as Jerry Freeman, from Racing at Petit Bateau Ltd., wrote in an article, featured yesterday in the Europe Scuttlebutt. An article which I propose reading for every sailor. I am a vest wearer nearly always but have to rethink a few clothing tips when going out early and not having developed my sealegs.

A friend had send to me this morning an interesting link to a: Swedish Blogger with DN Scrot , who had survived an accident during the last DN Europeans. His boat being "skrot" which in German means: Schrott and to you English speaking guys: "Scrap". This guy has other nice boatbuilding projects featured and I wished my Swedish knowledge would be able to read through, but it isn´t.

April brings a lot of boatwork on the various projects and from May on I think we will go sailing on the water again.

Montag, März 19, 2007

DN European Championship put behind...

What a week we had in Haapsalu, Estonia. Spring temperature on the Ice and a lot of racing. One cannot ask for more. My friend Andreas Bock, (G-624) Germany won the title in a hard fight against all those young Polish, Latvian, Estonian competitors. He also beat former World Champion Ron Sherry (US-44). I had the pleasure to become second best German, finishing 20th which is not too bad without much training this season and bearing in mind that I will zero again this year. I had reported nearly daily on the German Iceboating site: (use the link) of course in German but you will also find photos which give you an idea about the trip and the location. More photos are available on the site from our Austrian commodore, Niklas Müller-Hartburg, who did a phantastic job, travelling 2400km with a trailer behind to find a location which would suit all 150 competitors. This big fleet of course had been divided, after 2 qualifiers in typical DN-fashion, into 3 fleets. Gold, Silver and Bronze. Anyone interested to know more, should try to read the German diary under German Iceboating Homepage on the page under DN Yacht where you can also find result lists.

Donnerstag, März 08, 2007

Haapsalu in Estonia is the place to go for DN sailing

Tomorrow morning, Friday at around 05.00h am we will leave for Haapsalu for the DN EC. The only place in northern Europe at present, which has sailable ice conditions and with a weather report of unchanged temperatures and no snowfall predicted, we should be able to sail our European Championship from Sunday on. My friends and I have booked the ferry from Stockholm to Tallin, others are taking a ferry from Rostock into Ventspils, Latvia. The latter takes 27hrs and I think that is very boring to be on a ship that long. We prefer the 13 hours drive to Stockholm, than an overnight ferry and we will be ready to sail a few laps at around noon on Saturday. Sunday the first races are to be started. The picture attached is from the World Championships 2002 at the same place, were Ron Sherry, US-44 won the title.

A pity I could not train anymore before the Championship this year due to workload and no ice within easy reach. I have to try hard to defend my 12th position on the World Ranking, otherwise I will slip back and have to go through the qualifier races next season. This is really, really difficult. Only one race and you have to be within the top 12. Coming from a bad starting position (drawn by the computer), say left side in the 40´s or 50´s you have to do one more tack than the starters from the right and chances to make it, are small. I have been there in the qualifier league due to two bad seasons and I will try my best not to drop back again. My fellow readers should wish me luck and I promise to do some reporting.

Montag, März 05, 2007

Waiting for departure to DN EC coming weekend

Very difficult to catch up with my blog these days. There was just no opportunity to go sailing (iceboating as in winter...) and I do not want to bore you with a typical "day in the office". Or a Monday evening like this one, where I catched up on reading fellow bloggers messages.

Just to let you know about the difficulties this year to find good places for DN sailing, I´ll post the latest message from our European Commodore who is travelling with car and trailer (which has his equipment stowed) from Vienna to Poland and further into Sweden and now wants to check Conditions in Finland and maybe look further on into Estonia. All to find a suitable site where 180 sailors can launch their boats, sail races and can be accomodated for the upcoming European Championship. Niklas is a great guy who is doing this in the old fashioned style. Looking it up for himself. Not trusting webcams, not trusting reports from people who want to pull us into their territory to make some money, or just lazy race organisers who do not like to travel. Niklas, we here in the north of Germany really do appreciate what you are doing at present. Keep cool and keep up the good work. See you on the Ice.

Posted by Niklas (Commodore) on Monday, March 05, 2007 - 07:04 pm:
Dear friends, to avoid - I know that this is almost impossible - too havey discussions in the grapevine I decided to post some preliminary informations here.
I started on thursday night from Vienna to Gizycko (where has been the Polish Championship) to check the ice there. Arriving on friday Irealized that the icesituation in combination with the weatherforecast is not good enough. Saturday I got information from Kjell..that there are some spots in Sweden, but it came out that only the spot in Västeras could be good enough for a EC. The other spots have too thin ice.
Now I'm in Västeras and we wait for rain, so that the slush and snow may disappear. For what will happen with the water afterwards I'm missing the phantasie. Tomorrow (Thursday) we will have the decision if the EC will be in Sweden or not.
If the decision is not to sail in Sweden, there are two possibilities: Finland and Estonia. Tomorrow I get informations from the Fins and from the Estonians about the icesituation there. The decision where it will be I can do when I have seen the ice myself. So I have to go there and this takes time. So please wait till tomorrow for the information if we will sail in Sweden or not. And please be patient with me - it's not that easy. Think Ice. Niklas