Friday, 20 May 2011

Starks Kettle

The "to do" list for my boat isn't getting any shorter! I'm new to "to do" lists but after some intense boat work I had hoped it would minimise itself.

Still, some notable additions! I now have an adjustable wand by Phillippe Oligario, and that for me is a nautical version of owning a kettle by Phillipe Stark. Its beautifully built and is the wand of wands. As I sailed last night at a nice warm Hayling Island I really enjoyed the control it gave me. It was easy to fit! Admittedly first time I fired it across the dinghy park, but then changed to a more permanent fixing than super glue. Anyway I really like it and I can see it being more useful in light winds rather than chicken downwind stuff, but we'll see.

Ooh and I now have a new mast coming, and finally I have the correct sail numbers on my sail too, the latter only took two goes. Alzheimer's setting in early probably.

But the coolest thing on my to do list was to buy a bike! And so I'm the proud new owner of a fixed wheel Kona racing bike and after 45 minutes of strenuous cycling yesterday I think that derailleurs really should only be used by the over fifties.

And so I do miss not being at the Mothfest and I hope they are all having a good time, but I'm cracking on and a bit more organised I hope.

PS Mach 2 sailor Geoff Carveth we think has just won the Zhik Laser SB3 World Championships! Hot off the press and barring protests but well done mate!


Monday, 9 May 2011

Diamonds are forever

Hey I won a diamond yesterday! The Parkstone Moth Open was kindly sponsored by Moth sailor Rod Harris and his company "Why Jewellers". What a wonderful first prize, my best ever!

Although after Saturdays performance I didn't deserve anything, low and slow I have finally conceded that only better men than me can make the MSL13 go. Probably its my weight and possibly its an intelligence thing, but we don't gel, and certainly don't go fast . And so after a 5/3/5 on Saturday a new MSL10 was numbered up later that evening and I was a rocket ship yesterday.

The UK fleet is healthy and with 25 boats at the event it promises to be a great year for the Brits. I really enjoyed the event and great to see people like Chris Rashley going so well, and also excellent that Andy Patterson, attending his first Moth open meeting for 15 years, got the newcomers prize!

Funniest thing of the weekend was, after a tiring day yesterday sailed in champagne conditions, Chris and I followed Jason Belben back down the harbour into the marina. Only problem was it was the wrong bloody marina!

Fortunately the Nationals are at Jason's home club...;-)

Monday, 2 May 2011

Son and Air

Years ago I didn't have much tolerance for anything, but if I was drunk I could just about understand the mentality of the cruising sailor. Now I am one and on Saturday I sailed my 50 year old boat around the Nab tower with my Dad. It is, according to the chart, seven miles due south, and because I'm not good at sailing this type of boat I spent 6.90 miles on a port reach and then had to tack to get round it. No matter, it was good fun and I love old wooden boats. I will have a bigger one one day. One that has oil lamps where I can read "Riddle of the Sands" by Erskine Childers, and a toilet, and not a bucket.

But yesterday it was back to Moth sailing and after an ill advised trip out into the bay to watch my friends competing in the Flying Fifteen open meeting I then struggled to get back in again with gearing so low that when the wand swung forward, the flap moved probably in the same way a glacier moves. A fast setting I think on the piste....but not in the Alps..

Later Mike Lennon and I made the long beat to the top of the harbour and hung around near Itchenor waiting for the killer gust that would make us ballistic in the flat water, It never came and the closest I got to any sort of decent speed was actually earlier coming in over the bar with a 25.5. Still it was a good chance to get more time in, and I'm starting to get some speed out of the new boat. Whether it will be enough for Parkstone Open Meeting this coming weekend I doubt. Still I will do my best. I've a new smaller main foil on order, but as Mach 2 sales soar past the 200 mark I doubt that it will be ready in time for any imminent UK events.

Today was windy, and I stood by proudly watching as my youngest son went out in his Tera as the wind topped thirty knots. Well done TP! Great sailing!