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1 Big regatta preparation John and Shirley Moss 505 KC 2728 ~1971.

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1 1 Big regatta preparation John and Shirley Moss 505 KC 2728 ~1971

2 2 Outline of presentation Learning about the conditions at your event. (wind, tide, amenities at site,…) Main competitor comparison – Do you have up to date equipment and rigging? Regatta schedule – good events to practice and compare skills at. Self Assessment – to figure our where to improve Specific questions addressed

3 3 Choose your event based on goals you have… 1.Find out about the conditions, amenities, resources, etc. to be provided at the event. This information will dictate, somewhat, what youll need to do in preparation for that event. For example:

4 4 Wind conditions will dictate what earlier events and events that you wish to practice at, plus they will indicate what tactic and strategy topics you may wish to polish up on (e.g, light, heavy, geographical influences (sea breezes, geographical shifts), typical conditions for that location that necessitate a local knowledge. Find write ups of wind conditions for that location (for the time of year you will be there) Example: Local Knowledge: Racing in Annapolis bin/articles/tactics/tacticschapter7c.cfm

5 5 Water conditions. These have important implications for sailing practice, boat set up, and sailing strategy (flat water, lumpy – waves close together and not too high, swells – large waves far apart). –Flat water: go for pointing more – less cunningham on main and jib, can pinch a bit more generally. –Lumpy: no pinching ever, go for speed… always, practice downwind sailing in lumpy waves as very hard to find the right place to gybe – carry speed into gybe well from higher angle. –Swells: learn to sail downwind pretty much all the time… this is a real skill and for us Ottawa people, we dont really understand it until weve actually sailed against people who do it well (they go twice our speed…). If you are not used to swells, you may get seasick if the wind isnt too strong, make sure you have enough good food to help you out (protein and fat, not just carbs). –Lots of weeds? Practice techniques to get rid of weeds (lifting centerboard at opportune times and swiping weeds off of rudder.

6 6 Tidal conditions. Direction of tides, timing of tides, how the tides may vary across the course location (shallow areas in wide open areas generally have slower tides, eddy locations). How do the tides affect the waves? Do you have to sail against tide some of the days to get to the course? This can greatly lengthen the time to get to the course (3 hours vs 1 hour…). Get tidal charts and chart of sailing location (water depth)

7 7 Water temperature? Which clothes to pack? Salt water? Any jelly fish? Long pants required. Salt water is also brutal on the skin (apply sunscreen and then a layer of waxy lip protector/cover to your skin to seal your skin from the salt).

8 8 Getting to the course. How far and long to sail to the course? Will they have tows available? If so do you have a tow line/system in place to safely allow yourself to be part of a tow line of, lets say, 30 boats (i.e., 20 boats being towed behind you…)? Tidal conditions affect the length of time to get to the course? If it is a long time, youll probably not be in for lunch (probably dont want to be anyways…) then ensure that you have a good supply of food that wont get soggy in salty water. Will they have lunch boats in which you can deposit lunches or water in? Where will they be located on the course (generally for a set period of time nearby the finish line). If it is a long way to the course, be prepared for long days on the water (Ive been on the water by latest at 8:00 a.m. and then off by 8:30 p.m. – with transit times to the course totally over 5 hours over the day… day after day… not very common in 505 events, but it can happen). Get chart so you dont hit rocks…

9 9 How many competitors expected at the event? This will affect: tactics employed (big fleet: commit to the starboard layline enough ahead of time and dont underestimate where it is) (see article Ten Moves That Dont Work in a Big Fleet experts/tactics-and-strategy/ten-moves-that-donand146t-work-in-a- big-fleet-201130.html types of course configurations, qualification rounds then division into A and B fleets, ease of launch.

10 10 What resources are available at the sailing site? Food. Canteen? (open what hours during your event? Lunches available to buy from canteen for the event?) Nearby supermarket? Boat storage (secure spot? Theft rampant there? Most places arent like Ottawa…) Car parking? On the site? Far away? Security of car? (what can you leave in your car (Miami is a place that youll sure to loose whatever you have in your car…). Boat repair facilities? (out of rain? Hardware store nearby? Power source?) Shade in hot weather? Clean water source readily available? Out of direct line of wind? Ease of rigging… That calm feeling… Where do you keep your trailer? Launch facilities? Crane (do you need a crane harness?) Launching ramp? (how big, how many boats can use it at once – available dock to rig sails at once launched… whether you need a proper launching dolly) Sometimes you have to get in line an hour early and keep your place… Beach launch (do you need a kick up rudder or do you need to practice sailing, in waves, without a rudder, downwind, in strong winds???? Where do you keep your trailer if you find it a hassle to deal with during the event?

11 11 An aside… food and hydration are very important… btype=pdf btype=pdf Casa DJ. Related Articles, Links Exercise in the Heat. I. Fundamentals of Thermal Physiology, Performance Implications, and Dehydration. J Athl Train. 1999 Jul;34(3):246-252. PMID: 16558572 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher] btype=pdf btype=pdf Casa DJ Exercise in the Heat. II. Critical Concepts in Rehydration, Exertional Heat Illnesses, and Maximizing Athletic Performance. J Athl Train. 1999 Jul;34(3):253-262. PMID: 16558573 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

12 12 Accommodation? Location relative to sailing site? If in Europe, is it during holiday season? (might be hard to get a place in a desirable location without book way in advance). If European, need bedding and sheets? Find out exactly what they provide and what you need in advance (e.g., fridge, heat, power… no kidding… (Worlds is in October… not typical holiday months)

13 13 Transportation? It can be very hard to rent a vehicle with a trailer hitch, but it is possible. Need to talk to those who have done it a lot to learn how to arrange for a reasonable price. Going to multiple events in Europe and going home in between? Where to store your boat?

14 14 3.Who are your main competitors and how do you compare against them? Are they located close enough that you can race against them in advance? Equipment comparison. Do you know what equipment (rigging styles, sails and set up, foil designs, size of crew and helm, characteristics of crew and helm (strength, size, experience) they use/have/are? What kind of conditions do they regularly sail in and what conditions have they been fast in, in the past?

15 15 4.What does the regatta schedule look like for the next couple of years? How can I maximize attendance at events that have the conditions (wave, wind, tide) and competitors (level of competition) that you are targeting at? If you are targeting the Italy worlds, will there be an event in Europe relatively close by that offers you an opportunity to practice? In a world where we have all the money and time available…

16 16 5.Self-assessment How do my/our skills rate compared to my target competitors in the following areas: Heavy weather: –Heavy weather skill at actually maneuvering the boat through tacks, gybes, heading up, bearing off, spin hoists and douses. –Heavy weather go for speed ability. By this I mean that the skipper can just make the boat go fast and never let it slow down…

17 17 –Heavy weather guts downwind. Aggressive downwind sailing without being too reckless. Knowing how to sail downhill well… In Ottawa we dont get that practice too often. –Heavy weather tactics and strategies. Knowing how they differ from medium wind and light wind tactics. –Having the strength and endurance to sail competitively all day. –Boat set-up appropriate to your size (foil shape, size, and position; sail shape – cut and rigging; mast flex characteristics).

18 18 Medium wind: –How to keep the boat going in a chop. By this I mean how the skipper steers, plus how the rig is set up. Light wind: –Appreciating the concentration required to enjoy light wind, so that you have fun and keep trying. –Sailing in slop in light wind. How to do so effectively. (we never really get this in Ottawa, but it happens in any big lake, especially on holiday weekends). –Understanding the difference for light wind tactics and strategies, especially in a big fleet. –Smooth boat handling.

19 19 For all wind conditions – speed is paramount, but its not always new equipment that will give it to you. Understanding the characteristics of the equipment you have is very important (as long as it is not too old). How tuned into feeling how fast my boat is going? For all wind conditions – boat handling. Smooth and finesse the light stuff, power through the medium, and strong, decisive, and smooth for the windy weather. How is my knowledge of the rules?

20 20 How advanced is my tactics knowledge? –How good am I at making use of a compass but still having my head outside the boat and watching how my position changes relative to competitors when wind, speed, and current affects our relative positions? Am I conservative enough? (Consolidate when I can unless I have an excellent reason not to…) How advanced are my boat-on-boat, race, and regatta strategy skills? How good am I at starting? (which includes being able to go where you want to on the first beat) How comfortable am I being in very close quarters with other boats (3 wide around a gybe mark in 20 knots of wind)?

21 21 Personal Assessment: Regarding the above skill areas, do an honest assessment of your own skills. Training plan development: Target the areas where you feel that you are weakest and improve them. Target the areas for practice that you feel will be important for the event you have set goals for.

22 22 Specific questions addressed (Im going to answer these questions from my situation – my level of skill and practice right now) What pre-regatta off water prep should we do? –Make sure your boat works well and is rigged so it will not break for a stupid reason. It doesnt need to be exotic… just needs to work well. –Strength train (#1) (get an at-home strength training plan from a certified fitness professional. There are several fitness professional designations in Canada – see ) Aerobic endurance train (#2) (see next slide) –Ensure that you have at least relatively good condition sails and consider refinishing your foils. –Brush up on rule knowledge (Im out of date…) What regattas should we consider doing and criteria for choosing? –For the season: Regattas that will have competitors at my level and better. Regattas that have lots of competitors. Regattas that will have similar conditions (wind, waves, tide) to that of my goal regatta.

23 23 An aside… Sailing and sports medicine: a literature review J B Allen1 and M R De Jong2 1 SailSportMed Inc, Wilmington, NC 28403, USA 2 Southern Illinois Sports Medicine, Bellesville, IL, USA Correspondence to: Dr Allen SailSportMed Inc, Wilmington, NC 28403, USA; Accepted 9 February 2006 ABSTRACT Sailing medicine has been mainly addressed by healthcare professionals who happen to sail. Although there has been an increase in the number of studies of various aspects of sailing over the last 15 years, efforts to advance evidence based knowledge of sailing and sports medicine face unique obstacles. Recent interest in research by groups such as Olympic and Americas Cup teams has produced beneficial changes

24 24 Specific questions addressed cont With limited free time what balance should we strike between practice/training and racing regatta? –Go to every regatta that you can. Racing under pressure will force you to try maneuvers under pressure that you might not try yourself (or you may take too long setting up for them…) –Obviously practice when you can too, but always choose a regatta over practice as long as it is not too onerous to get to. What should we practice? –Get out early in the season and focus on boat handling. Make sure you can sail in 25 knots of wind comfortably – gybing, hoisting, dousing… get so this doesnt seem very windy. –Sort out tunning for heavy air (know your rig numbers inside and out) –Practice going fast all the time in heavy air. –Make yourself tired so you get some sport-specific physical training benefit

25 25 Specific questions addressed cont What should be practice? cont –Compare boat speed to those faster than me so that I get faster (in a variety of wind and wave conditions). –Fleet tactics, starts, boat-on-boat tactics. –Heavy weather downwind racing with lots of boats around (going high after the windward mark and not letting others roll me). What are the key equipment issues? What are the key things you need to have like the top boats? Should we buy brand new sails and break them out at that event only, what spare parts should/must we have. –Key equipment issue? That your boat works well… dont worry so much about it, just learn to sail your own boat. –Key things to have like the top boats? Rig and sails like the top boats (for people your size and strength).

26 26 Specific questions addressed cont –Key equipment issues cont: My performance will be better improved by practice than by my sails… That said, I wish that I had bought Ulmans last time I bought sails and not Quantums… But, learn how to sail the sails that you have fast, or learn why they are slow and get the sailmaker to change them. I have an old main that is very fast in light and medium winds in slop. I just need a new jib every once in a while. Understand some sail theory and it will take you far. Know what you want your sail shape to look like for all conditions. Always try your sails beforehand (unless you buy exact duplicates… in special light cloth fabrics that will be stretched easily…) –Spare parts: Spare set of sails Depending on the importance of the regatta… spare boat, spare mast, spare boom, spare foils…

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