1/2 ton of fun
I just sold my own really sweet 1985 Nissen designed 1/2 Tonner Finnair Flyer (ex-Portuguese Connection) to delightful Belgian former Whitbread and Mini Transat veteran Albert Pierrard who is going to race her with about 6-7 other good 1/2 Tonners in Nieuwpoort including Waverider before bringing her back to Cowes in August for the 2011 Half Ton Cup. About 30 boats are expected.
An original 1/2 tonner, she was a full-on Nomex/carbon/titanium bandit and a beauty to sail under IRC in light to medium air, much more interesting than the modern boats. In over 12kt true however, well truth is I just don’t have enough friends to keep her down… you need at least 7 people or a new keel for upwind pace against the modern and updated old boats.
Albert is a dude however, worthy of SA. He rocked up during a full November Channel gale with his mate to sail the boat back to Belgium. Brought a liferaft and some foulies and off they went (the girls drove the trailer back by road). Set off in a solid, chilly Force 7-8 cool as anything,
Here’s Albert’s report: "Flyer is good and well arrived in Newport Saturday afternoon after a very windy and wet trip; Wednesday with 2 reef up to Gosport then Friday with 8 beaufort up to Dover.
And finally Saturday crossing of the channel with spinnaker.
Flyer deals with the heavy seas good resist except for the North main that will need some repairs."