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1000 Mile solo qualifying passage Posted Sunday, May 11, 2008 by keith
I intend to attempt this straight after the UK fastnet. Follow my progress from the link on the news page or my home page.
UK Fastnet 6.5 Posted Sunday, May 11, 2008 by keith
I am off to Plymouth tomorrow, we start our first race qualifier of the year on the 17th May.
Run by the Royal Western, our progress can be followed on there website and also my tracker will be active which can be followed on this website.
Boat delivery to Plymouth Posted Sunday, May 11, 2008 by keith
What more can I say, glorious sunshine, good breeze, qood company, quick trip!!!
Steve Homewood my co-skipper for the UK Fastnet 6.50 accompanied me on this great trip, we started out with light but building SSW breeze which allowed us to lay the course we wanted and at the same time try out our shiny new Sanders Sails code 5 headsail.
As the breeze built so it moved more and more to the East, so by just after midnight we had the big kite up and about 15knots of breeze pushing us along at a very respectable speed. Unfortunately we just couldn't lay start point and had to drop the kite for the last bit to start, once there we again were able to bare away and hoist the kite for the final run into Plymouth eventually arriving at QAB for 9am and a well earned breakfast.
Solo round the island - A very long day Posted Monday, April 28, 2008 by keith
The 2 things the mini hates most are upwind and no wind, and that basically describes the solo round the island.
With a 6am start to catch the tide (and as it happens the last of the wind) we started with a beat down to the needles, followed by a bear away at the needles onto a close fetch, no sooner than I had hoisted my shiny new code 5 than the wind headed and I was back to beating towards St Catherines, round St Catherines and again the wind swung and started to die!!! Eventually the wind went back to the south but only a couple of knots and I got the kite up and eventually drifted upto bembridge ledge buoy with the tide just starting to run against me!! It was then a slow kite run to Nomans land fort with many holes in the wind, before a run back to the finish that wasn't much quicker!!!
Eventually I finshed at 8:30PM just as it was getting dark!! With all the other slower boats behind me retiring I was the last finisher!!
The good news for me was that I just made it into the Island Sailing club in time for dinner followed by prize giving!!!
Being a glutten for punishment I left the ISC just before midnight and sailed back to Lymington, eventually getting alongside at 4am, a long day!! But good training!!
Solo round the island Posted Wednesday, April 23, 2008 by keith
Just entere the petite bateaux single handed round island race.
Race takes place 26th April starting at 6am!!!
Another overnight training session goes well. Posted Wednesday, April 23, 2008 by keith
Last weekend saw another overnight training session.
A session which pushed me somewhat harder!!! With winds gusting to 25 knots from the east, I decided to stay mostly in the solent, sailing backwards and forwards between West Lepe and the needles, going upwind with 2 reefs in the main and a reef in the solent, and downwind with full main and small spinnaker!! Very satisfying to manage several spinnaker gybes in the dark and several hoists/drops without even getting the kite wet and no wipeouts!! It was also a huge confidence boost in the autopilot as this is the most amount of wind I have sailed in single handed with the kite and this autopilot. Kind of satisfying to be doing 8 knots over the ground against the tide through hurst and just hit the autogybe function and only have to manage the sails and not touch the helm!!!
Overnight training session Posted Sunday, April 6, 2008 by keith
4pm Friday saw me heading out of Ocean Village for my first overnight training session of the year. With a new autopilot and new generator, I had a lot to test. The forecast was pretty well perfect for what I had in mind albeit it was expected to be very cold!!! I headed west out of the solent on a close fetch with 8-18 knots of wind, with the wind in the north to northwest, most of my time was spent putting in reefs and shaking them out, once out of the solent and into christchurch bay the wind settled down, and I was able to concentrate on setting up the autopilot/course computer, I also tried out the generator. By the time I had finished playing with the electrics and had a meal I was fairly well down into bournemouth bay and time to turn for home. So I set course for the needles and hoisted the masthead reacher, on the final approach to the entrance to the needles channel the wind started to die and head, with a full spring ebb against me I decided to drop the kite and head for the north channel in the hope that I might have less tide. I just managed to make it through hurst narrows on the last of the proper wind and crept up the mainland shore again with the masthead reacher up, and with a speed over the ground in the region of 2 knots, took the opportunity to get some sleep in!!! Eventually making it into Lymington at around 4:30am.
Solo festival Posted Sunday, March 16, 2008 by keith
Went to the Solo Festival organised by Petite Bateaux last night at Royal Southampton, picked up some very useful hints about food from Sam Davis, and also learnt that I may not have made the right decision about Autopilots (Time will tell)!!!
ISAF Posted Friday, March 14, 2008 by keith
As with all things these days, we need bits of paper in order to progress. So yesterday I set out for southampton and attended a course which upgraded my current RYA survival certificate to an ISAF certificate.
Qualifiers Posted Wednesday, February 27, 2008 by keith
In addition to my racing miles I need to complete a non stop 1000 mile solo passage.
My current aim is to do this qualifier leaving from Plymouth a few days after the UK Fastnet 6.5.
The course is laid down in the class rules, and takes me round a light vessel just east of Cork in Ireland and then round the Ile de Re in the bay of Biscay.
More details on the course can be found at class mini (click here)
UK fastnet 6.5 2008 Posted Wednesday, February 27, 2008 by keith
I raced in the 2007 edition of this race, and I have now entered for the 2008 race.
Starting and finishing at Plymouth and going to the Fastnet passing west of the Scillies both in and out.
I will have fellow LTSC member Steve Homewood as my co-skipper.