Samstag, Juli 12, 2008

Eventful Days in the Moth and the Bull

Being on holiday this week and staying home, I was playing with the Moth after the frustrations of loosing the foil from the centerboard last week. On Monday I had some good time out here on the Schlei until I lost my rudder foil. In hindsight I think there must be an old fishing net or a rope where I hooked in and sheared the foil off. It happened quickly and I did not come to a halt. Frustrating after the boat felt so nice and quick. The good thing is that I am prepared for these misshapes. I have a second set of foils (ordered for the aim to help out people in Kiel when the dealership between Bladerider and Christian Brand was not settled) and as you can recognize that this helped me immensely this week. First the wing from the centerboard, now the wing from the rudder. My stocks of spares is running down as Felix still has a few important parts which can break or need to be replaced when abused or used a lot. Enough of this, back to sailing. Tuesday searching the shores for the foil with no success. Wind around the 15kn mark gave me good practice on the adjusted set up (2 turns in) Ride height in the waves not too much. Downwind I think I am sailing way too conservative. Should risk more, should steer more aggressive. But all in all some gains here and there. I have the feeling that my tacks are improving faster than my still "nonfoiling jibes".

Wednesday evening the wind was on for the last beer-can-race before the school holidays and with K. not available and my crew at the 14´s worlds, I asked young Adrian if he would crew me. He is out on his Europe dinghy at many evenings and very much interested in all aspects of sailing. No wonder, his father is a designer and engineer of yachts and commercial ships. OK, here we go. I helmed the start and the first beat and Adrian took over after rounding the weathermark middle of the fleet. We were overpowered, overcanvased or simply put: we did not have enough weight on the rail. The two of us. Around the mark, I rigged the boom, hoisted the kite, got it up without watering it. A bit of sailing on the port tack and than we had to jibe. We wiped out. Hard. Layed flat. Dropped the halyard and had luck that we, or better the others, avoided to hit us, to break our 2m bowsprit which stuck out on the front end like a sword. After I had peeled all the wet 60msq of gennaker back into the hatch we needed time to catch our breath. We were last boat by now and sailed without the red monster but after a while hoisted it again to dry it out and to catch some boats. Aren´t we racing here? Adrian excused himself for the manueuver but what for... I should have given him better advise about NOT to give much rudder with this boat. Just let it jibe and go deep again in the heavy air... Able to catch a few boats during the race, no more broaching (!) as Adrian seems to be a quick learner. We came 8th on corrected time with a total of 10 boats surviving this windy race. 18-22kn from the west. Gusting.

Thursday had still some nice breeze on with rain showers. Summer seems to have gone here in the North. Out with the Moth again with the spare foils. Tried to follow some friends on their downwind spinnaker runs (X-34) but capsized too much and could not pass them. They cheered me when I crashed in the close distance. Maybe they get the idea that this is part of the game. Part of the fun. But not for me. Before getting overly exhausted I finished my sailing and went for the hot shower.

Friday I´ve been sailing again and this time an old windsurfing friend (he did an Olympic campaign in the DIV II board for the ´76 games) came along on a RIB with a bunch of juniors. He is a sports teacher at one of the famous German residential schools nearby. A school which has 29ers, 49ers and also runs open gaff cutters for the beginners. I was able to pull away from the loaded RIB in the gusts. Thomas promised to come back and to wear a wet suit next time he sees me out on the water. I heart him giving a lot of explanations about how this boat "can fly". He surely wants to give the Foiler Moth a try. Hej, Christian! this is one for you. Give a test-sail-day to the sailing squad at Luisenlund. After Thomas and the kids had left I did some up and downs to practice my layline approach. I find it difficult in the Moth with the (my!) wide angles, sailing upwind. The last round was a good one. A really, really nice downwind run (deep, very deep on foils without capsizing) and a smooth rounding. I packed it in after that. Have to stow that in my memory! This good day even got better. After I had finished the shower the door bell rang and it was Adrian who had found my rudder foil on the beach!"heyitwasgreat!"

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