Boston Harbor Sailing Club...More Time on the Water...

Lesson Learned

Light Air Slow Downwind



The air was light and we could just barely fly spinnakers.  Upwind we did great but were passed by several boats downwind.  Can't blame the boat.



Generally when flying  the Spinnaker you want the pole horizontal to keep the Spinnaker far away from the boat and to catch as much air as possible.  Also, when going downwind with the with these running Spinnakers the Spinnaker clews should be even.  To do both you slide the Spinnaker ring to raise and lower the Spinnaker pole.

With this particular boat the Spinnaker ring was high on the mast and not movable.  Under the prevailing circumstances dropping the end of the Spinnaker pole so that it was nor longer horizontal was faster.  (In this case the pole was dipped about 30 degrees below horizontal.)  Keeping the clews even was more important that keeping the pole horizontal.  The clews were very low because the wind was so light.

The disadvantage was that the helmsman could not see where he was going.  But at least, he was going there faster.



Written by John Clark.  Any comments? Send me an email

Lessons Learned

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