Mar 14

Mini Training

The past week has been full of excitement! Last weekend I got to sail on three different Mini’s, then today I finally got my new laptop! Last weekend was the first of four training weekends being organised by the Artemis Academy. I had expected to watch the training but actually got out on the water!

On Friday I went to Chichester to meet Jake Jefferies and help him sail his Proto to Cowes for the training. It was the first time I have seen a Proto, so I was keen to see all the special features. Compared to the Pogo 2’s the boat is pretty radical. It’s curved foredeck takes sometime to get used to when the boat is flat, but once sailing is very effective. Once sailing the canting keel is nice however I wouldn’t want to use it tacking a lot as you don’t have the luxury of hydraulics. As we approached Portsmouth, we heard a loud crack, and saw that the mast of the mast was damaged. we dropped the main and headed back to Chichester. It was a slow sail back against the tide, not helped by the fact the engine had decided it too had enough for the day. We finally made it back to a Chichester, Jake got a call from Andy who was waiting for the next tide to take him to Cowes. So it was decided, I was now going on a night mini adventure as well!

After a nice warm meal, we headed back to Andy’s boat to continue to get it ready until about midnight when we left. After making our way through the lock I had a quick nap as Andy got us out of the harbour. It was a fantastic night sail across to Cowes. Andy’s boat felt huge after Jakes. I was also very impressed with his system of tacking. He did it single handed cleanly time and time again. Andy has had the boat a while and has had the time to set up the way he wants it. We managed to pull into East Cowes about 6:30am!! Had a quick nap before getting up at 8:30am to get ready for the training.

Andy's Pogo 1

After a quick breakfast with Luke Dampier (Pogo2) we headed to the OC Thirdpole offices to meet the rest of the group. Adam Bowers was the coach for the weekend and while new to the class was excellent and adapting and sharing his knowledge especially in rig and sail set up. HavingGetting to go solo for a while! expected to sit in the rib all weekend I was ecstatic to learn I would join Luke on his boat for the day. The conditions were great on Saturday, nice and forgiving as Luke and I were still working on systems for boat manouvers. But not forgiving enough as I managed to get a nice cut on my finger, but at least this time nothing was cut off! Having decided to postpone video analysis til Sunday we all headed to the pub for dinner then passed out! I have never been so tired from a couple of hours in 10kts!!

Lukes Pogo 2

On Sunday there was lots of fog and no wind so we stayed land-based. After some theory and video analysis we headed out to the boats to look at set ups and for Adam to show us some sail-maker secrets. The sun came out in the afternoon as we packed up and all headed off back to the mainland. Sailing on the three Mini’s has confirmed my deep interest in the series boats, while I highly respect Jake for building his own boat (and rig!) I think I will have my hands full sailing a series boat. I also like the idea of more one-design racing! Now just got to figure out how to get a boat…..

Getting to go solo for a while!