Category: Dart 18
Once again our roving Windsport Support Team gives us their own impression of the Dart National Championships held at Felixstowe Ferry Sailing Club
The Windsport Dart 18 event support road train rolled into Felixstowe Ferry SC car park late Wednesday night after our 8 hour journey from sunny Windsport in Cornwall ( I lie it was raining and misty when we left , but a balmy evening when we arrived) the doors were opened up with boats being rigged all around.
Day one saw a light-ish breeze on a tide working against the upwind leg and a short chop, so tricky to keep the speed on. The experienced Dart 18 sailors found the pace with Dave and Louise posting two safe 1st positons and other long term Dart sailors filling in the other top ten places.
The Windsport event trailer was busy first thing while scrutineering took place, not with anything major, but a good opportunity for sailors to get their boats sorted. All credit to Joe franks who sailed the first two races with a bridle chain plate held on by 2mm of s/s attached (see pic) and Matt with the “green machine” that he has lovingly restored and slowly replacing everything that can be replaced!
Day two and a bit more wind and just enough for some to trapeze with a tide under the fleet as they arrive at the start line . A couple of general recalls while the fleet get sorted and then two races with a solid breeze up the last windward leg of the day to get everyone out on a trapeze for a quick airing. Well done to Paul Wakelin , sailing single handed, who recorded a 1st and a 2nd great sailing from a single-hander and we hope to see more like him in the future, watch out Paul Chatfield the single handers are on your case !!!
Big thx to the UKIDA committee, following the AGM. Sailors please note, YOUR committee do a huge amount over the year to provide you with events and sailing, turning up to the AGM is at best the opportunity to voice your thoughts and at the least an opportunity to thank that voluntary team who work so hard for you and your class.
The UKIDA committee provided the entertainment with a games night of silly and skilful games, like shooting golf balls, rowing races, limbo dancing and two person wellie walking. All good fun, a few pounds raised for the class and some very worthy winners. Sorry to say the Windsport team did not win the rowing race by quite a few seconds! Pic attached thx to Dan Tubert.
Day 3 ,
Ok now up to date, sitting here in glorious sunshine with a sea breeze that is starting to build. A 1 hour postponement is up which is always good for Windsport business as sailors fiddle with their boats and find things they need or should change. So far so good, whatever a sailor has wanted to replace on his boat we have been able to supply along with technical support and a bit of on shore coaching to encourage sailors towards improved results.
The protest by OCS boats against the race officer has been sorted and the fleet are leaving the beach as the tide floods into the river.
Ok , catch up on yesterday, similar breeze to the previous two days , light weights on the wire by the second race heavier teams wishing they were on the wire and trying!
Windsport support trailer open all day to keep the fleet on the water and make sure no one missed the second race .
Bit of drama on the water when two boats got tangled up resulting in Mike Gomme getting a bang on the head and taking in some sea water. No big boat damage and a day in bed for Mike as recommended by the ambulance team. Good news for Mike because he got average points for the rest of the racing without hoisting a sail!
So now we are on the last day, breeze is up, well up, may be too much up and the fleet are on a 1 hour postponement while the race team wait to see what the next hour or so brings . Hope full they will get a race in for the teams that like a bit of breeze but we will see.
I the mean time the Windsport event support team have posted the sail numbers of those boats that need to settle their Windsport event accounts and hopefully that will all be tied up before the boats leave the beach.
In the meantime a picture of chilling out time after the 70’s music ad fancy dress evening, eat your heart out ABBA.
Ok , the weather did not play ball for the Dart18 Nationals fleet and the final days racing was cancelled due to the strong winds.
Very worthy winners Dave and Louise Roberts stepped up to take the winner’s trophy with Paul Wakelin (singlehanded) second and David Lloyd/Eloise Knott in third.
A good time was had by all, pity the last day was lost , but hey that is sailing.
The good news was, everyone got away a bit earlier than expected including the “Windsport event support ROADTRAIN” and with a good run we got back to Windsport Cornwall just before midnight so a few hours ahead of schedule!
Monday morning and guess what it is raining in Cornwall of all things! Time to start the off load and the checking back in of the event support stock and equipment. Meanwhile we have the 420 nationals underway from our boat park so lots happening!
Next year” 40 years” of Dart 18 national championships, his will be a BIG ONE, so hold on to your hats, plan ahead and make sure if you sail, or have ever sailed a Dart18 catamaran , you are there to share in the celebration @ Stoke Bay SC
Congratulations to all those who entered the event, as they say, everyone is a winner but there can only be one champion team.
Rest Day and Race Day 4
Ok the rest day was hot, too hot to sit in the sun, we apologise to those back at home in the English summer!
The rest day event support team opened up until midday then took a break.
Yes the part of the Windsport team (Tom P) went Kite surfing while the event support team watched and handed out a few useful tips like jump higher and oh what a crash landing!
Laura Croft was also out on her board ( well she had a long pony tail) and Tom P got a few waves from her as she passed by in the opposite direction. The shore team asked for a backie but were not successful. We failed to take pictures.
Back to work at 4.00pm and still Dart sailors asking for technical advice , replacement parts and repair jobs.
The work day ended about 7.00pm and the sailors accounts are all up to date, we just need them to pay!
So here we are Thursday and the wind has just flipped around to onshore and started to build . Will come back to you with the action later on.
Ok back on the case, after the first race . It took time for the wind to build today and the first race started in marginal trapezing mode. As it built there was light patches and some shifts so testing for all. It looks like the Windsport race team called it right and managed to hold on to the lead into the finish, but by then boats were coming ashore with collision damage and breakages so the Windsport shore team were busy back at the support trailer.
Race two got away in what is now a solid breeze moving left. Looks like the same top 1o teams are fighting it out at the front but the team in the middle of the pack are having just as much fun. Forty minutes and it will all be over for the day with stories to tell and situations to amylase .
Visit the event website for the attest results and event pictures . http://eurodart18.org/
Party to night with a Rock Band, food and a few beers so there could be a few sore heads tomorrow.
Just packing up for the day at the event support trailer, thx to all the teams that have come to settle their accounts , it makes life much easier. Few more still to go but hopefully they will pop n first thing in the morning.
The Windsport did the business with two more wins so they have won outright with a day to spare, well done team, as we have left you to it.
I think they have a plan for tomorrow along the lines of swapping crewing positions so we will how Tom P likes the front of the boat and Nikki will practise her starting !!!
Ciao for now
Brian . Windsport event support.
The final report on the Dart 18 Europen Championships came through on route – our returning Windsport Support Crew giving a little more insight into the activity that goes into the Dart 18 Catamaran Fleet. Remember next year will be 40 years since the Dart took to the water for the first time! We look forward to seeing you at next years championship.
Day 5 and onward
Well the party went on well into the night on day 4 and with Tom P and Nikki knowing they had a day to spare they did some partying along with many young Dart sailors from France , Italy, Switzerland, and the Brits.
Day 5 has been busy for “Windsport event support” and with the boats ready to leave the beach on time, we have been stuck at the trailer sorting out account payments , additional parts and other going home challenges.
So all I can tell you right now is that the Windsport race team plan to go on the water at opposite ends of the boat , I am sure they will have a good time along with the rest of the fleet.
More to follow once we get caught up.
Ok back on the case, only one race on the final day, in lightand shifty breeze with no trapezing. Nikki helmed around the course with Tom at the front crewing and finished a very credible 9th across the line, a good time was had by all with two Brits and one French in the top three of the final results. The prize- giving went off well with the ‘Union Jack’ heads above everything else. Congratulations to Tom and Nikki for a clean sweep of 8 x 1st places, discarding a 1st and a 9th against some very seasoned Dart 18 sailors with many wins under their belt.
We are all packed up loaded and about to leave 8.00pm our time, as we need to get some miles under our belt so not sure when you will get this update as we roll along!
Day 6 on the way back to Blighty.” It is never over until the fat lady sings” Well had a burst water connection that took the engine temp up to max , so had to fix on the way to the Alps, and we finally got heads down at 3.00am in the morning. Now skirting Turin and on a mission to make the Roscoff ferry with a few minutes to spare on Sunday! All good so far on day 6 of the trip home.
Sunday , just loaded on the ferry, and on our way home, Tom flew into Stanstead this morning and is doing a Windsport pick up of parts from Brightlingsea and then Southampton water.
We should all be back at Windsport for Monday morning ready to start that other work!
Windsport technical support.
Event Website: for pictures and up to date news: http://eurodart18.org
All good down here at the Dart18 European championships , boats being scrutineered , teams fine tuning their rigs , practise race was a challenge with a on shore breeze that moved around the course.
Evening opening ceremony with the parade of country flags set the scene for a great event .
The Windsport Event support trailer is set up in the middle of everything , Paul and Brian doing what Windsport does best , at these events , share their knowledge and help sailors make sure their boat is best prepared for the racing.
Wind moved to sea breeze early on in the day , just perfect for Dart18 sailing.
Fleet got away in race one first time .
The Windsport race boat sailed by Tom Phipps and Nicky Boniface lead out of the start and held that lead over the next three rounds to finish a comfortable first.
A few teams came in with breakages , Windsport has been there to get them back out on the water, replacement shrouds , loan of a Port hull and a loan jib, kept the unfortunate sailors happy.
Race two and the wind had switched a bit to the right.
The fleet got away on a good start, then the pressure was a bit soft and then went left again so everything to play for . The Windsport race boat managed to keep it all together to claim another first place , while the Windsport single-hander, Paul Chatfield, had to retire with a trapeze harness problem. Outside of that he reported good boat speed and expects to be up with the pack tomorrow looking or a good result.
Blue sky, sunny beach, building sea breeze , what more could the sailors ask for .
Two great races with wave to challenge you downwind and fight against upwind. Almost all the fleet got around in a 20kts breeze , a few mishaps on the way but nothing that cannot be fixed by the Windsport shore team, even between races to get sailing teams back out on the water.
The Windsport race boat team of Tom P and Nikki still hold 1st place, although they are the first to admit their downwind technique is still under development and the top Dart teams reel them in as they close in for the leeward gate.
For Results click here:
We are almost ready to roll! – Our Windsport Support Trailer will be on hand throughout the event from 1st to 7th August to answer all your queries and help with spares. If you need to arrange order and collection of gear from us at this event we would need to know by midday Friday 24th July.
Find out all about the event here
Sailing in catamarans has been part of Tom Phipps life since he was 10 years old. Now at the age of 26 years and aiming to represent GBR at a future Olympics Tom is involved in making sure other young sailors get a similar chance to start sailing catamarans as he did some 15 years ago. Outside of Tom’s hectic Olympic Nacra 17 catamaran sailing program which includes working all hours and fund raising to finance his Olympic quest,he has been refurbishing the UKCRA (UK Catamaran Racing Association) fleet of Dart16 cats in preparation for the charter program available to clubs & associations.
Working from his home base at Windsport near Falmouth, Tom has been servicing, renewing and replacing the boats to prepare the three fleets of Dart 16s to be available for clubs to charter commencing the beginning of 2015.
Age ten, Tom started his cat sailing on the Dart 16 with his best friend John. He progressed on to the RYA junior cat program in Hobie Dragoons, the youth program in Hobie 16 ‘s , RYA development program in Hobie Tigers and eventually stepping into the Tornado catamaran just as ISAF pulled the plug on Olympic catamaran sailing. Although he continued to sail catamarans with titles in both the Dart 18 and F18 fleets as well as an invitation to sail in a C-Class event Tom re-focused his efforts and went to university, gained a first Class honours degree. Recently, with the introduction of catamaran sailing into the Olympics in Rio, he has slotted back into the Olympic catamaran program in the Nacra 17.
With all his experiences Tom certainly has not forgotten the fun, adrenaline and multihull skills he learnt as a young sailor in cats which is why he was very happy to get involved in the UKCRA Catamaran Club Charter Project. As Tom P said, “ sailing catamarans as a young sailor was the best buzz you could possible get. We sailed hard, had many crazy capsizes, enjoyed the squad coaching and made sure we enjoyed our down time at the end of each day. Getting into cats was the best decision I made in my sailing career and I hope every young sailor gets the chance to have a go”.
For more information on the UKCRA catamaran club charter program contact Cookie by e-mail email@example.com.
To follow Tom Phipps visit www.tomphippsracing.co.uk
Six crews enjoyed amazing weather at the Windsports Centre over the weekend of 27th 28th September. The Crews had been drawn at random by after attending at least one UKIDA supported event. We are blessed with the perfect location for these coaching events although it was not all a hard slog. Windsport laid on a BBQ on the Friday night and a sociable Saturday evening in Castaways East just a short stroll away from our Centre in the Harbour.
A combination of good club to championships racing teams enjoyed a concentrated two days with Brian Phipps covering both classroom, boat park and on water coaching
From our viewpoint at Windsport, we hope everyone in the coaching group got some valuable food for thought they can work with and add to their Dart racing tool box.
We hope we left all those attending our sunny very light wind weekend with the understanding that: coaching is not about telling, but it is about drawing, expanding and evaluating, why, how and what we do when we are in Dart mode.
If you would like to find out more about Windsport Coaching please contact us at 01326 376191.
Windsport as part of its sponsorship package with UKIDA offered 2 full days of Race Coaching. Drawn at random two crews have the pleasure of a weekend at the Windsport Centre in Mylor Yacht Harbour.
A welcoming BBQ on the Friday night is followed by two intensive days of input on the water improving all areas of race technique and boat handling. This will be coupled with classroom time offering comprehensive advice in all areas of preparation and race theory as well as analysis of performance on the water. With Brian’s vast coaching experience it is certainly session that all crews will benefit from and we look forward to welcoming them and take home with them an improved level of performance.
For more details on all Catamaran Coaching Options offered by Windsport – Please contact : firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office on 01326 376191
The Windsport Pits… no association with Coal pits but equally energetic – the Windsport team “at the coal face!” Brian working hard servicing another satisfied client – And we would add that Brian is not unusually small it is just that his client is exceptionally tall!
Hoping to see all the Dart crews and supporters at the Welsh Wednesday Sponsors Party Night
Keep unto date with the Dart 18 Europeans at the scenic Mumbles Yacht Club in Wales here
and for a fantastic array of photos from the event try here
Many thanks to our Class supplier helping with tonights event:
- RWO Marine – RWO Marine supply a large amount of the fittings and equipment used on the Dart 18 and a number of Windsport licensed parts.
- Wave Loft – Waveloft manufacture under license all the covers and protective items listed on the Catparts website for Dart18.
- English Braids – English braids supply all the ropes and lines used on new boats and supplied by Windsport at events during the year.
- Windsport International – Licensed supplier of Dart 18 worldwide and the home of Dart 18 for new boats and replacement parts . Windsport works with all appointed manufactures to provide the quality service and product that makes Dart 18 production one design sailing such a success .
- Cad Kat – Manufacturer of “The Big Wheel Launching Trolley” with unique roller bearings ideal for soft sand and rock beaches. Windsport stock Cad-Kat trollies and replacement parts.
- White Formula – Windsport’s appointed manufacture of composite material Dart 18 hulls and equipment.
- Hyde Sails – Hyde sails appointed manufacture of the Dart 18 production one design sails for Windsport under license.
The Windsport team are in our final stages or preparations for the European championship support. For those who have already placed a pre-event parts order, your order is picked and packed ready for collection on day one. For everyone else this is the last week to get your replacement parts order in and marked up for collection at the event.
After this week it will be what ever is in the support trailer at the time and still available.
To make sure you get what you want at the start of the event Windsport recommend you place an order this week for collection at the event. (Order by close of day Sunday 10th August)
Order on line here or call us.
Windsport Dart18 support
Make sure you join us for the Welsh Wednesday – Windsport suppliers party –