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Why Build a Fleet, Practice Racing and Hold Regattas? - By Britt Hall

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  • Roger Cleworth
    Why Build a Fleet, Practice Racing and Hold Regattas? I was recently asked: Why make the effort to build a fleet and host regattas? And why would sailors who
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 9, 2007
      Why Build a Fleet, Practice Racing and Hold Regattas?

      I was recently asked: Why make the effort to build a fleet and host
      regattas? And why would sailors who just like to sail, not race,
      want to join a fleet or attend regattas? The simple answer is that
      these activities are the best way to build skills and confidence.
      Sailing, in general, and sailing the 2.4mR in particular, is a
      unique sport. Unlike golf or tennis, where the venue is staffed by
      competent professionals willing to provide coaching and training,
      there are very few opportunities for instruction in sailing. Unlike
      a Laser or 420, where there are junior instructors willing to
      provide suggestions and tips, there really isn't anyone to ask about
      trim adjustments and proper heel for the 2.4mR. The best information
      comes from other 2.4mR sailors. The best learning method is sailing
      with other 2.4mR sailors.

      I came to this sport in my early forties, so I need all the help I
      can get. I only started racing because I was lucky enough to have an
      instructor who believed that practice racing was the best way to
      build competence, seamanship and safety. Couple that with the fact
      that I'm the type of person that only learns from mistakes, not by
      reading about mistakes, I need to sail to get better. That first
      instructor gave me a subscription to Speed and Smarts. I've kept up
      that subscription and enjoy reading it. I've purchased NorthU's CD
      on rules of racing and spent time trying to understand the
      difference between a 360 and one tack/one gybe. I've tried
      practicing by myself with a GPS to determine boat speed, to see how
      the different types of trim affect the helm, speed and balance of
      the boat.

      But the true understanding of all this information occurs when I'm
      on the water practicing with a partner matching trim. It's then that
      I can look up (and in my case – over) and see what a proper sail
      looks like. It's during a race that the advantage of a tack and gybe
      becomes painfully clear.

      What about the sailors who don't want to race? If you want to
      increase your competence, it's the best to go out with other
      sailors. It's just more fun and safer to go out with a partner or
      two, preferably with sailors you know and trust. A good way to meet
      those sailors is to build a fleet, and, yes, attend a few regattas.
      It doesn't matter if you are at the back of the fleet, or dead last
      for every race. If you are last by less in the next regatta, you're
      improving. The first time you encounter heavier winds or bigger
      waves, wouldn't you like having a pin boat and mark boat and 10
      other sailors out there with you? And if those sailors actually know
      how to adjust their trim for those conditions, wouldn't that build
      your ability and confidence? And you won't have to just look at
      their sails to determine how to trim. They'll tell you if you ask.
      Perhaps this is the defining attribute of this fleet: it has
      experienced and competitive sailors who will share their extensive
      knowledge.

      The 2.4mR is a great boat, easy to sail and difficult to sail well.
      It will teach you much about sailing that can be transferred to
      other boats. But the best way to learn is to sail it often and to
      sail it with other people. So consider building a fleet and hosting
      a few regattas. You may be surprised by the people that show up!
      Britt Hall
      USA118
      Brithall45@...
    • mark bryant
      Dear Brit, Very well stated and written.. You ve showed your true excitement for our boat... Still need you to do a video of how to sail this great
      Message 2 of 2 , Nov 10, 2007
        Dear Brit,
         
        Very well stated and written..  You've showed your true excitement for our boat...  Still need you to do a video of "how to " sail this great boat...  Thanks for all your help with Jim Reiman our newest member..  You where great..
         
        Mark Bryant

        Roger Cleworth <rclew4u@...> wrote:
        Why Build a Fleet, Practice Racing and Hold Regattas?

        I was recently asked: Why make the effort to build a fleet and host
        regattas? And why would sailors who just like to sail, not race,
        want to join a fleet or attend regattas? The simple answer is that
        these activities are the best way to build skills and confidence.
        Sailing, in general, and sailing the 2.4mR in particular, is a
        unique sport. Unlike golf or tennis, where the venue is staffed by
        competent professionals willing to provide coaching and training,
        there are very few opportunities for instruction in sailing. Unlike
        a Laser or 420, where there are junior instructors willing to
        provide suggestions and tips, there really isn't anyone to ask about
        trim adjustments and proper heel for the 2.4mR. The best information
        comes from other 2.4mR sailors. The best learning method is sailing
        with other 2.4mR sailors.

        I came to this sport in my early forties, so I need all the help I
        can get. I only started racing because I was lucky enough to have an
        instructor who believed that practice racing was the best way to
        build competence, seamanship and safety. Couple that with the fact
        that I'm the type of person that only learns from mistakes, not by
        reading about mistakes, I need to sail to get better. That first
        instructor gave me a subscription to Speed and Smarts. I've kept up
        that subscription and enjoy reading it. I've purchased NorthU's CD
        on rules of racing and spent time trying to understand the
        difference between a 360 and one tack/one gybe. I've tried
        practicing by myself with a GPS to determine boat speed, to see how
        the different types of trim affect the helm, speed and balance of
        the boat.

        But the true understanding of all this information occurs when I'm
        on the water practicing with a partner matching trim. It's then that
        I can look up (and in my case – over) and see what a proper sail
        looks like. It's during a race that the advantage of a tack and gybe
        becomes painfully clear.

        What about the sailors who don't want to race? If you want to
        increase your competence, it's the best to go out with other
        sailors. It's just more fun and safer to go out with a partner or
        two, preferably with sailors you know and trust. A good way to meet
        those sailors is to build a fleet, and, yes, attend a few regattas.
        It doesn't matter if you are at the back of the fleet, or dead last
        for every race. If you are last by less in the next regatta, you're
        improving. The first time you encounter heavier winds or bigger
        waves, wouldn't you like having a pin boat and mark boat and 10
        other sailors out there with you? And if those sailors actually know
        how to adjust their trim for those conditions, wouldn't that build
        your ability and confidence? And you won't have to just look at
        their sails to determine how to trim. They'll tell you if you ask.
        Perhaps this is the defining attribute of this fleet: it has
        experienced and competitive sailors who will share their extensive
        knowledge.

        The 2.4mR is a great boat, easy to sail and difficult to sail well.
        It will teach you much about sailing that can be transferred to
        other boats. But the best way to learn is to sail it often and to
        sail it with other people. So consider building a fleet and hosting
        a few regattas. You may be surprised by the people that show up!
        Britt Hall
        USA118
        Brithall45@aol. com


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