Posted by: brunning | February 4, 2013

Day 3 Sail Auckland – Breeze on

ImageHi all,

Woke up today feeling the characteristic way you feel after hiking a laser for two days (six one hour races) solid AKA sore all over and cant squat or climb stairs to save your life ……..

Rolled down to the club and started rigging but the AP went up as strong northerly breeze. About 20-25 knots. In classic RC form they canned the 49ers and 29ers and sent the lasers and finns to test out conditions. Oh and some 420s and 470s.

Race 1 – around 15 – 20 knots in the lee of the island it was reasonably steady in terms of shifts but a nasty chop was developing. Started well but did not seem warmed up or switched on and made a lot of errors. Hiking felt like shit and often missed or badly timed efforts of when to hike and steer etc. Kinda felt like I was asleep and going through the motions. Was a bad move and missed a crucial right hand shift. dropping me from 3rd to 5th …

Finished the race and once I got my bag I jumped off boat and had a quick swim. Cold water woke me up pretty quick and then smashed down a V 500ml energy drink. I was basically vibing so much I had to have some water to dilute the sugar, caffeine and gurana.

Race 2 – Sailed off the line into 20 knots and building. Chop a little smoother as was change of tide coming up. Held lane just down from boat but tacked and ducked a stern to get right of the fleet. Was on a reasonable lefty and started getting some mojo and feel with the waves and wind. Very much about choosing when to hike and moving body around to keep the nose out of harms way. Sailed over toward the right lay but tacked what I thought might be 100m short. At first I headed a little but could see some boats up ahead high on starboard. Patience!

I switched modes and went for speed. Dropping sheet and trying to surf every downslope. I crossed the fleet by about 25m and then tacked into phase. Thom my housemate had gone a little further right and found an even bigger righty to cross me but he was alone. After ducking him I tacked off his hip to round the top in first.

On the top reach I had so much on. The boat was bouncing along and breeze in right phase meant it was pretty loose reach. Keep the nose up and get right down the back corner and dont spin out. At least 25 at this point. On the wing mark I used a set of waves to bear away and protected the leeward side downwind. Behind me closely was Maloney without a doubt. I played safe and conservative down the run and he made up around 50m of me and we were parallel going into the gate. He gybed to come over to my side but i think his boom tapped the water because suddenly i had a 50m lead again out of the gate.

Then it was just a battle upwind. Both of us hiking hard and we sailed away from the rest of the bunch. The next run I got away but spun out and lost some ground but luckily didnt piss it! Andy was right on my hammer. The final beat (cause we doing O3) I just stayed in phase and beam tacked. Held a little lead and on the final downwind again Andy was right on my hammer. We gybed for the final reach almost in tandem and were only a few meters separate at the finish! Bloody close racing and we had just left the bunch behind ……….. especially in 25 knots

Race 3 – Smashed about 750ml of flat coke and half a litre of water. Warmed up for 5 mins off the pin end. Started 1/3 down from boat in nice lane and found a set of waves going my way. Punched out and rolled over the leeward guys and the breeze went a little left so I tacked in phase. Lead the bunch back to the right with only the guys tacking off the boat further right. Sailed to the right lay and protected the right. Footed back down the right lay and even overlayed a bit so had to work harder to offset that loss.

Top reach again heaps on but sunk low with the pressure. Rounded the wing mark and spun out in a big gust but bore away again and got going. Andy again not far behind but also going high and trying to keep boat upright. On bottom gate went for the gybe and boom tapped the water. Spun out and couldnt lay the mark so had to tack and reach back to other gate hahahahaha. 25 – 30 knots and tall cross swell chop hahahahaha !!!

Tacked back as andy rounded the other gate and stayed in phase with him again. Lead to the top and kept her upright on outer downwind and no spin outs. On final beat did the same and protected the right and bore away with a solid lead. On the final run some of the gusts were making me nervous and I was self talking the whole way saying things like ‘stay smooth and calm, go with the waves, point to the gate in the lulls etc.’ It worked! and I held on to take my second win for the day!

Totally shattered now and off to bed. Took a quick cold bath and released what I could at home. Final day tomorrow and a completely different wind direction. Will try wake up and get in form a little quicker tomorrow … I find Caffeine and cold water immersion helps! hahaha what a surprise !! … Overall results


  1. Hey, what exactly do you mean when you say surfing the down slopes upwind/got a good set of waves upwind? Is this underlying swell or just trying to get down the backs of the chop? How do you do it!?


    A British radial sailor

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