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A day of many firsts

Saturday morning on the bike to the train station: freezing cold! Even more reason to train hard and to sail fast to stay warm today. Around 10 o’clock during the briefing at Waterland in Monnickendam we had our last cup of tea to start the training as warm as possible.

We sailed the boat with the four of us on Saturday and only one of us had a bit of experience in the J70: for the rest of us it was quite an unknown boat. Thereby, we never sailed in this set-up either so we were really excited about what was the day would bring.

There were another 6 boats competing in this race training on a short up-down course with a short starting procedure so we could sail 8 races.  Where other teams had the focus on boat to boat situations, we didn’t run into many boats on the course unfortunately.

We all haven’t been sailing for a little while, so we all had to get used to sailing a boat again. Our focus was mostly to get to know the boat and on boat handling. It was really useful for us to sail with the same boats and good teams around us. This way we were able to compare our speed and angles with them. We also saw how the other teams had divided the task on board and how they dealt with certain situations on the water.

Our learning curve was really steep. In the morning we have been mostly busy with all the different tasks in the boat. Specifically how to apply certain tasks on the right situation.  In the afternoon everybody really made steps in their position and everything got better together. We got more feeling for the boat during the day so we could make bigger steps which paid of in keeping our speed up during tacks and jibes. We got more skills in the hoists and drops of the genaker so the whole handling became more smoother by the end of the day.  In the afternoon we swapped positions a bit so we could experience what someone needs in another position.

It was a really good day with beautiful sailing conditions and even a bit of sunshine. We have learned a lot but we will have to make heaps of steps to keep up with the other teams. Though we have made a good start this weekend and of course there are many other team members with more experience on this boat. The next training day by Wout Kollmann will be in about two weeks. We are really excited for what is more to come!

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