We were hoping to follow on with a few more ‘experiments’ from the 1oth Singapore Cat Nationals (read about it). Unfortunately the NE Monsoon faded and so we couldn’t achieve as much as we had planned. However I can say that we ‘experimented’ with a few bad starts a blown spinnaker halyard and they certainly don’t help with your results…
But there are lessons to be gained from everything.
1. Prepare your boat well before any race.
2. Make sure you get good starts and you’re half way there!
During the Cat Nationals we had really good pointing ability but I was hoping to find the same height with a little more speed and acceleration from the Viper F16 so the Spreader Rake was increased 5mm, and that was all that was changed.
Unfortunately the opportunity of alongside pacing with the Nacra 20’s never really presented itself but from what could seen the Viper still maintained its height but felt like it had better acceleration.
By observation the Nacra 20’s power-up much earlier. The leading 20’s were able to get in trapeze earlier than the F16’s and as such, would start pulling away at lower breeze levels! Two of the N20’s have become very competitive over the last two events with one of them showing greater downwind performance – how do those guys do it?
The Viper Spreader Rake will be left as is until we can pace directly with one of the 20’s to get a better gauge of its performance changes. In the meantime, we are looking to get more depth and more speed downwind under the kite. We have something in mind which will hopefully work because at the moment, the Nacra 20’s seem to steam roll us with better angle and speed. It is sort of ‘to be expected’ as the 20’s have a much longer waterline and spread way more sail area… but no one likes being steam rolled!
What the changes are exactly I can’t say yet as we haven’t applied them yet. In double trapezing conditions we know the Viper can hang upwind with the 20’s but loses out downhill. So it’ll be a good test to find some more performance on the downhill legs.
More on that later…