Nov 24, 2016
A-Class Arg: Non Stop Flight (& Fun)
This weekend many of us we went back to sail and this time also race A-Cats. It was great fun, 7-9 knots on Saturday, flat and good pressure for moments. 4 races held and a real joy to race As again, for me it was since Bordeaux 2014.
We have a good mixed fleet of rookies and local top guys sailing all kinds of equipments like F1, Dna '15, '13 and Exploders A14.
For full foiling downwind it was almost marginal conditions with some good pressure gusts, the perfect scenario for Mehl to apply his great learnt technique to foil the entire downwind legs to establish +5mins gaps.
Second place was for recently crowned F18 World Champ, Pablo Volker (Photo left & former 420 WC too) who is currently sailing Moths and As. I have a mission for the kid: For him to grab both major titles in the future. Pablo sailed Mischa Punta Ala Dna and finished ahead the other two F1s.
I sailed an A14 and it was a blast, I managed to get two races from an F1 and finished Sat 4th race meters behind Volker's Dna 15. It was pure hours for me and floating vmg on the downwinds with some flights/skimming. Upwind legs I broke the Decksweeper boom before the start of the first race, and luckily I had a plate to sail no boom, but it was not placed correctly so heading to windward was tough.
Eitherway trapezing up & downwind was a change from the F18 helm mode , where at no time you trap downwind.
On Sunday 4 races held in 5-6 knots with full in and flat downwinds to train in full floating mode.
The best part of the event was having the new guys participating, young and older, I had to put some pressure previously though for them to enter, I explained that racing a windward/leeward course was the perfect training and learning opportunity. In fact the first race some got issues finding the right course downwind and all finished next races on a reasonable time after us (and us after Mehl.. on Sat)
After the racing you can saw their satisfaction and sense of accomplishment in their faces.
For me was the same, and I just wanted to keep sailing and improving.
Next December 2,3 & 4th weekend we will organize the first Nats at a lake 150kms from downtown BA. We wanted a no chop/wave venue for all to keep learning and also go for some flat foiling runs.
Check video above from Mehl from past Friaday, those are unsteady 8knots maybe similar to Sat races conditions. 1.20mins flight non stop, that was the difference on Saturday with the rest of us, on A14 or even F1s. So it was finally the sailor skills which defined the races.
Of course for two leveled helms, the F1 or a D3 will have some edge, but still you have to race and complete the course ahead of the rest. The other great result of the regatta was confirming you can have the A & 'B' fleet racing together, and it is the best way to pass knowledge and learning for the new guys entering the fleet.
In the past, I remember around 2013, the different As designs were having almost no handicap like the F18 between each platform, nowadays is obvious we are not facing the same scenario in the A-Class, but there is room for all to start in the same lineup.
A parallel ranking (as we've been requesting and implemented by the US fleet for years now) is the definitely the way to go. Not a separate, but a parallel ranking, maintaining the overall.
In the end, great event for us to continue formalizing the local A-Class. More to come next weeks.
Lets see if we can get Lange onboard... I told him this week that he might have all the deserved Glory , but he is missing an A-Cat flight like the one above to complete his trophy & achievements shelf.