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Posts Tagged ‘World Championship’

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Big Pimpin

The SAP 5O5 Worlds has everything you’d want from a big event: Container accommodations, spectator boats, live race coverage on the SAP youtube channel,  and the event website is a great source of information.  So far, all that’s missing is the wind. Like Outkast so wisely said, “You can plan a pretty picnic, but you can’t predict the weather.”  The next few days are looking better with breeze coming in for the final days.

Seldén Mast has been on site all week in support. Their “Alto” 505 mast has won about everything there is to win in the 5-Oh class and they’re raffling a brand new one this week. This Alto is from their new “XPS” aluminum alloy, which is harder, stronger. better against corrosion, and can take more bend without a permanent set – ideal in a dinghy mast. You can jump in the raffle at the link below.

From the SAP 2017 International 5O5 World Championship event:

Dear Competitors,

Our Partners at Selden are going to run a raffle for their brand new Alto Mast Section.  Each ticket is $1.00, 6 tickets for $5.00, or 12 for $10 to be entered and randomly drawn for this great prize.  We will announce the winner at the closing ceremony on Friday.  Selden has also agreed to generously donate all proceeds to the Olivia Constants Foundation (link).  The Olivia Constants Foundation was founded in honor of Olivia Constants, a talented young 14 year old whose life was taken away on June 23, 2011 in a tragic sailing accident. Olivia lived her life with such joy and has impacted so many people that we have been encouraged to continue her legacy through this foundation.  The Foundation is run by Steve Constants a longtime member and leader at SSA.

You can buy as many raffle tickets as you like to maximize your chances of winning this great prize!

To buy your tickets please use this Paypal link.

And if you don’t know about the 505, now ya know, Sailor.

 

September 28th, 2017 by admin

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A quick correction to Snapper’s awesome report from the 6m Worlds, thanks to a Facebook reader: You wrote :”Fridolin’s keel lead was used by the Russians in WW2 for bullets”. This needs to be straightened out, it was the other way around – not used by the Russians but used against the Russians. Many fine Finnish yachts lost their keels during the WW2,  as their owners donated the keels to the Finnish army to be used as bullets. Many boats sailed with concrete or iron keels for decades before being refitted.

With the third Ukrainian weapon depot in a year blowing up mysteriously yesterday and the country still fighting to hold its borders against a newly adventurous Russia, we figured the Finns wouldn’t want anyone to forget their own battle against illegal Russian expansionism, and the fierce fighting of WW2 enabled by Finnish resolve and thousands of lead keels.

Photo from this 6m Class post.

September 28th, 2017 by admin

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With only one race firing off before the Mistral shut down yesterday, the J/70 Worlds in Sardinia has been a frustrating look at too much breeze and not enough.  It doesn’t seem to be bothering Peter Duncan though – his main competition had deep results in the finicky race on Friday, and his Relative Obscurity – crewed by Victor Diaz, Creature Van Waay, and Jud Smith – has a ten point lead going into the final two or three races.

As long as they get two in before the wind dies off, one throwout will make its presence known, and with 81 boats in both Gold and Silver fleets, a hero can become a zero in one mark rounding.  Still if Duncan can hang on, that’ll make 3 out of 4 existing world champions all coming from the US of A – something the Italians won’t be happy about at all.

Watch it all live – from the boat with commentary from Clean on the J/70 Italian Class Page, and from the air with Zerogradinord’s drone over here.

 

September 15th, 2017 by admin

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We believe that hell may have actually frozen over a few hours ago.

We’re not sure how else to explain the fact that of the seven teams just thrown out of the J/70 World Championship for measurement violations – in Italy – five are Italian!  Organizers even have the support of the J/70 Italian Class despite the stature of the excluded owners, which includes the current Alcatel J/70 Cup champion and several top teams.   It’s a sign that the folks running the J/70 are taking their little boat as seriously as they have long needed to, given how prominent and huge the class has become since their first Worlds barely 3 years ago.

As past competitors in the Class, we’re not surprised to see the hammer finally drop on some of the over-the-top mods that have been creeping in since the get go, but we are definitely surprised and quite impressed to see it happen in a place that’s notorious for ‘turbo” Italian one-design entries that get away with it (anyone remember the Melges 24 bulb with chines or the Farr 40 that floated 2″ high of her lines? We do).  We’re also not saying that the DSQ’d boats are full of outright cheaters rather than opportunists taking advantage of Class Measurement guidelines and tools that were less than precise, but the hammer doesn’t care what the nail looks like, as long as it is a nail. Those rules and tools have now been tightened up, which should mean fairer racing for everyone in this huge fleet.  Bravo, J/70 Class admins and measurers, and bravo, Italia!

Anyway, the official notice is on your left.  From Italy, the DSQ’d boats are Achille Onorato’s Mascalzone Latino Jr (Francesco Bruni, tactician), Allesandro Molla’s Viva (Nicollo Bianchi, tactician), Marco Salvi’s Vertigo (from Porto Cervo, the event host, with Charlie Mckee, Tactician!), Claudio Dutto’s Asante Sana, prior Worlds podium finisher Carlo Alberini’s Calvi Network (Branco Brcin, tactician), Mauro Mocchegiani’s Rush Diletta (Matteo Ivaldi, tactician), and the Alex Semenov’s Russian-owned New Territories (tactics by Portuguese J/80 and SB20 World Champion Hugo Rocha).  We’re not sure whether this makes those pros more marketable or less marketable, but you might want to double check their work the next time they say ‘it’s legal, don’t worry’ before your big regatta!

Is this another case of pro sailors ruining a class, or does this kind of thing only happen when Classes slack on their measurement controls?  And is the J/70 Class’s action signs of great governance to come?  We’ll find out when SA brings our coverage to the J/70 Worlds on Wednesday (if the Mistral has shut down by then, that is!) . Until then, there’s of course a thread…

 

September 11th, 2017 by admin

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Clean Report 

The most democratic of big one-design racing fleets gets underway tomorrow in Porto Cervo, just days after the most exclusive racers in the world go home.  And unlike the Maxis, you can’t just buy your championship with champagne and briefcases full of cash – not that some J/70 owners aren’t trying!  In fact a number of top boats failed to measure in during the Worlds measurement.  It’s nothing new for a J/70 Worlds, as there has been nasty chatter, cheaters called out, protests, and even measurement DSQs at every J/70 Worlds (who can forget the famous Greenwald carbon rudder in Newport?).  Never has it been at an event this big – at least not since the J/24 days and the infamous keels of a certain RI family…

With an astounding 175 boats from 24 countries on the entry list, the measurement issues at the YCCS are extreme, according to Italian sailing blog Adesso Vela, which writes that [paraphrased/translated] “almost no one will tell you about dozens of boats who disappeared after they found out boats were being failed at measurement, while others are replacing their keels completely in order to race at Worlds.

We dig the response of the Italian J/70 Class, which is not the organizer of Worlds but sure does seem pissed off about the cheaters.  And those cheaters may just include a past World Champion or two, some Olympians, and at least one of Italy’s most illustrious yachting families…

The Italian Class has immediately sought further investigation of the situation and has requested that the Organizing Authority and the International Jury express their opinion on the eligibility of all boats in question at the Audi J/70 World Championship. 

Regardless of whether the boats are accepted by the Worlds Organizers, the Italian J/70 Class reserves the right to take disciplinary actions against Italian Class Members responsible for illegal tampering with their boats.

Our own Senior Editor “Mr. Clean” just picked up a plane ticket for Sardinia, and he’s heading over there to report on the big drama at the biggest sportboat Worlds in history.  Live morning shows, live streaming commentary of the racing, interviews, and plenty of shots of gorgeous italian girls…follow along on this front page and on Facebook here. 

 

 

September 11th, 2017 by admin

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It’s all up for grabs on the final day of the 2017 49er Worlds, and for the men at least, its the first time in ten years that anyone not named Burling, Martinez, or Outerridge will be crowned master of the men’s skiff.  Plenty of breeze for the four men’s gold fleet races, and if we don’t get another afternoon gale, the medal races for the men and women will be a sight to behold.

Watch it all unfold above, and be sure to check out Clean’s dock walk a few minutes ago for the forecast, format, and a look at the fleet launching.

September 2nd, 2017 by admin

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With safety and reliability sorries skyrocketing after Bora’s injury and the Nacra 17 bearing issues still fresh in World Sailing’s mind, the sport’s governing body, under pressure from the IOC, has pulled the foiling cat from the market and replaced it with Julian Bethwaite’s long-awaited full foiling 49er.  Seen here testing under the able hands of Kiwi 49erers Isaac McHardie and Bill McKenzie, the boat has a simple and robust flapped t-foil daggerboard and twist-grip rudder, and it’s already reached speeds  20% higher than any 49er in history.

When asked if it was maybe a little late to introduce a new foiling class for Tokyo 2020, World Sailing President Kim Andersen was nonplussed.  “We did it before, we can do it again!”

YES, WE’RE KIDDING. Happy September Fool’s Day. 

Ricardo Pinto photo of the dogs-off-chains conditions at the 49er Worlds with a big ass gallery over here. Watch the full replay from Big Day 4 hosted by Mr. Clean over on Youtube, and stay tuned right here on the front page for today’s still breezy action beginning at 1030 local time/1130 CET and running til they’re done.

 

September 1st, 2017 by admin

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Two days of 49er and FX Worlds gone with zero racing, but at least there are piles of gorgeous racer chicks around to talk to!  Here’s a half hour of Clean’s Adidas Morning Show – first with super hot European champs Tina Lutz and Sani Beucke, then a chat with the entire 6-woman strong Dutch FX squad, and finally a preview of the top sailors by Class Manager and Beijing Olympian Ben Remocker.  And it’s all shot right in front of one of the most famous Olympic boats of all time: Rodney Pattison’s three-medal winning Flying Dutchman Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious – which he named to annoy the press.

Three days of fully livestreamed action are coming your way from Porto starting tomorrow…wind or no wind.  It might end up being a surfing competition instead of sailing….

More Clean interviews, pics from Ricardo Pinto and Maria Muina, and contests at the 49er Facebook Page.

August 30th, 2017 by admin

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We think this is the best video in the history of A-Cat sailing.  Bravo to the sailors, bravo to whoever put this encyclopedia together, and bravo to everyone in the A-Class for fostering an environment of such amazing openness.  Pretty cool to see names like Paul Larsen, Goran Marstrom, and so many other luminaries in the history of fast cat racing.

August 23rd, 2017 by admin

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Just a month after Mischa Heemskerk and Stephan Dekker’s ridiculous, all-bullet (gold fleet) performance to win their first-ever F-18 World Championship, Mischa is back in the driver’s seat on Poland’s Baltic Sea coast as the A-Cat Worlds fleet fires up, and if this pic is any evidence, he’s on the prowl…[just joking, Carrie -ed].  Head to the thread to find out more about the deck sweepers, stabilizers, and no-boom rigs amongst the crazy tech in this fast foiling fleet.  Video preview here and big thanks toPJ Dwarshuis and the guys at DNA Performance for their help in putting together this comprehensive preview/form guide.  By the way, with both the Moths and A-Cats hosting their largest-ever world championships in 2017 and the average age continuing to plummet amongst the fleets, is there anyone out there who still thinks foiling is a fad?  News and photos from the event are over here.

19 nationalities and 150 boats on the entry list proves the growing interest in this highly competitive and foiling catamaran class. Dozens of past World Champs  in a variety of classes discovered the A class cat over the last few years as the ultimate in singlehanded excitement.  The A cats are challenging to sail, with nearly unmatched and highly-refined development in one of the last truly open classes left.  Many ideas coming from the A-class trickled down to other boats and even into the AC Cats; it’s not surprising then that many Cup sailors and designers play in the A for fun.  .

The reigning world champion and man to beat at the moment is DNA team rider, developer and fellow Dutchman Mischa Heemskerk. Mischa is on a roll, as last month he also won the Formula 18 class world title with 7 straight bullets in the goldfleet final and before that won the locally well known Round Texel race.

Mischa will face big competition from the squad from Polish A-Cat builder Exploder, which has put in countless hours in their effort to break DNA’s string of five straight A-Cat Worlds. Heemskerk’s biggest competition should come from Aussie Exploder riders like two-time World Champ Stevie Brewin and double Olympic medallist and Tornado world champ Darren Bundock, who’ve been working as a team to unseat the reigning Dutch champ.

While Poland may be better known for growing gorgeous women and brewing great vodka, their sailors are a major force to be reckoned with, especially with the added motivation of winning on their home turf.   The next generation of cat kids is led by 24-year old Jakub Surowiec who proved very strong at the last big European regattas, while Tymotek Bendyk and Jacek Noetzel are also factors – the latter is the longtime Polish champion and also the driving force behind the successful growth of the Class in Poland.

Mischa will again be sailing the stealthy black carbon DNA F1,  unchanged for the second year of production now. The platform is identical to his winning boat at last years worlds in Medemblik, Holland.

The DNA F1 is highly optimized for low aero drag, proving extremely fast in all conditions. The construction is state-of-the-art carbon/prepreg/nomex honeycomb, built in a unique one-shot method in Holland Composites‘ autoclave. Carbon fiber to weight ratio is unmatched, resulting in platforms that remain stiff for longtime.  We introduced the semi-rigid carbon trampoline last year, stiffening the platform and making the boat look extremely slick.

The ‘Z‘ foils, which have all four foils kept deployed in the water during sailing, as originally developed by DNA in 2014 are still unchanged. We have been playing with other foil designs however keep returning to the original shape – it is easy to optimize for one particular condition but in our view the best foil is the one offering the best all-around performance. You could see this clearly in the AC where they had various foils for different wind ranges – we have to make do with one throughout the entire event hence our quest for a good all arounder.

The decksweeper sails are common nowadays, but it was Mischa who developed the modern iteration of these super-efficient mainsails to a new level.  The sail seals all the way to the airtight trampolines, resulting in significantly higher efficiency of the rig.  This helped DNA take 1st and 2nd at the ’15 Worlds, and while Glenn is taking a much-needed family holiday instead of sailing Worlds, the America’s Cup winner and 9-time A-Cat world champ says he’ll be back soon to set things straight.

 

Sails might just be as important as foils in this fleet’s development, and Mischa Sails, the Polish Bryt sails and North Sails all use Contender Maxx cloth, which has proven very suitable for these refined and flexible rigs which needs to depower and repower within seconds. Brewin sails and Landenberger sails go for radial-cut sails from conventional laminates, some of them optimized for lower rigs and some top teams going boom-less, while other sailmakers stick to the ‘half-wishboom’ setup.  where other sail makers stick to the ‘half-wishboom’ setup.

Polish builder Exploder pushed foil development to the extreme by developing literally dozens of prototype foils and rudders designed by Spanish designer Gonzalo Redondo.  They’ve also varied their daggerboard and beam positions a lot over the last year, resulting in many different Exploders to come to the right setup. Exploder builds their boats out of home-made carbon prepreg/nomex, and in a more typical production method of two bonded halves per hull, making the boat a bit more straigh forward with less extreme beam shapes and conventional trampolines. Their Z foil (type number 21) looks to be the one to get right now, which surprisingly comes pretty close in surface and foiling angle to the now 4-year-old original DNA foil.

Foil design is all about finding the right compromise between control and speed , combining good low end performance with top speed and top control when it starts blowing. It really looks like the same challenge as seen in the AC , but on a smaller and more fun scale!

Upwind foiling seems to be the new challenge and it will be very interesting to see if this will pay off this championship. Australian sailors seems to have made a big step there, optimizing their rigs with shorter masts to get the center of effort lower for better, easier balance foiling upwind. Yet by doing this, they probably sacrifice some light wind performance there, so time will tell if it will pay off during the entire event.

 

Swiss manufacturer Schreuer with team rider and developer Sandro Caviezel pushes upwind foiling even further, developing his stunning airplane looking G7 with the same rigid trampoline technique first seen on the DNA F1. Sandro is looking extremely slippery upwind in this Swiss piece of art. Especially in moderate conditions and flat seas, Sandro could be a surprise contender.

It’s fantastic to see that the foiling revolution actually made the class stronger than ever. There has been a lot of discussion about foiling and about class rules in recent years, but the cool thing is that, in the end, those rules controversies led to the Z foil development, which proves to be the best foiling configuration possible for small catamarans. Loading boards from the top-down and leaving both boards down during racing brings easy handling of boats whilst sailing and also onshore. Most important, it eliminates the handling of boards up and down at each tack or gybe, and this important fact keeps racing interesting because tactical short tacks and gybes are not so costly.

The same type of boards are used now for the new Olympic upgrade of the Nacra 17. These boats are only on the water for a few weeks now, but sailors will quickly learn how to sail these boats fast and safe as happened in the A class. Without a doubt it will be an eye opener in the fleet of Olympic classes.

With the Polish Nationals/pre-Worlds having gone off in a mostly low-riding light-air affair, top Spaniard Manual Calavia came out on top, and the short-rigged Aussies may be scratching their heads to decide whether to go for the short rig (8 meters) or the common 9 meter rigs next week.

All European sailors stay with standardized 9 meter masts, nowadays nearly all produced by Scott Andersons’ Fiberfoam from Austria. Two choices there: The common and proven standard untapered section, which has been a class favorite for many years, or the tapered wingsection which was developed and built by DNA four years ago and now manufactured by Fiberfoam for DNA. The DNA’s mast section tapers from 165 to 125 mm, flattening out in the top to only 45 mm, so much more extreme than the original 60 mm thick standard section. Obviously, with the trend of foiling and smaller apparent wind angles these sections will become standard in the class quickly.

Attempts to wider wingmasts and even solid wings are still made in the class, but on the twitchy super light A-class, so far no one has proven any gain. But without any doubt, development also won’t stop in this area.

The A class is more alive than ever. More and more resources are put into development by builders and sailors, and foiling is no longer for pro’s only, but all average and above A class sailors are consistently foiling nowadays, making sailing the A‘s hugely attractive and addictive.

Which other class features competitive and attractive racing from 4 to 22 knots in all sea states, in more than twenty countries worldwide? We rest assured that the A-class remains the class to keep an eye on for the coming years.

-PJ Dwarshuis

 

 

 

August 18th, 2017 by admin

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