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Category: Dart 18

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“New boats” make their mark at the Grafham cat open 2015

 The 2015 Grafham Catamaran Open, saw success for the latest boats supplied by Windsport to the Dart 18 and Sprint 15  catamaran classes.

Mike Gomme crewed by Sarah Stones was sailing his new Dart18 catamaran, supplied by licensed manufacture Windsport  in the last few months, took line honours in the Dart 18 Inland championships while Stuart Snell in his Sprint 15  catamaran lead the fleet of 29 other Sprint 15 class sailors to a win the Sprint 15  Inland championships.

Windsport took over the production of both  classes a few years ago and have steadily  re-established all the supply and production back in the UK after the previous manufacture IMG_3102moved supply elsewhere.   The quality and  attention to detail of these “production one design” catamarans is key to their success and whilst there are many used and second hand boats on the markets there is no doubt  as with anything supplied new you get the best of what is available to race with when new.

There is no better time to join these great catamaran class fleets, invest in a full race spec boat and kick off the 2016 sailing season with a fast boat and fast sailing.

Link to Yachts and Yachting Dart 18 Report -here

For more information contact Windsport:- +44 (0) 1326 376191




October 21, 2015 More

Windsport Sponsored UKIDA Coaching weekend

Six  teams from the UK Dart 18 class association were the fortunate winners of the Windsport sponsored Dart 18 coaching weekend this October

Blue skies, and soft winds greeted the teams as they rolled into the Windsport coaching centre based at Mylor Harbour , near Falmouth.   A warm welcome was laid on by the Windsport hosts in preparation for two days of intense  coach training along with near perfect conditions.  The weather forecast did just what it said it would do,  starting with  a flat calm on the first morning building to a gentle breeze by the end of the day .

By the time  the shore based activity  and discussion was completed , followed by a Rib ride lunch to St Mawes, the wind had started to fill.  It was just perfect for putting into practise those light wind techniques that had been talked about earlier in the day .  The squad sailed late into the afternoon with just enough time to debrief pack boats away and head down to the local hostelry at the harbour to share a evening meal while England did its best to stay in the Rugby World Cup.image2

Sunday morning was an early start with boats launched and heading out to the training area by 9.30am and a fresh breeze greeted them, blowing in from the sea.   The building swell soon had teams developing their  techniques and skills as the coaching exercises became even more challenging. The squad headed out towards the bay with challenging waves keeping everyone on their toes as they went through both upwind and downwind drills and with both tactics and boat speed being paramount to their growing awarenessIMGA0502

With boats to load onto trailers and many teams having 300 + miles to travel home everyone was on their way by 4.00pm, tired but challenged. Windsport performance coach Brian Phipps said,” The measurement of a successful coaching session lays with the teams response, but my plan is always to send teams away , with a shared experience of things they want to work on, techniques they had not considered and exercises that have raised their game + a lot of fun in the process”.


The UK Dart 18 catamaran class is one, if not the best, supported  dinghy / catamaran classes in the UK.

There are not many classes that can boost a support program as comprehensive as that enjoyed by the Dart 18 sailors in the UK.

The manufacture Windsport  recognise the importance of  making sure  Dart 18 sailors have the best support to keep them sailing. Working with the UK Dart18 Class Association (UKIDA)  Brian Phipps and his team provide an annual support package that reaches all Dart sailors .

From their base at Mylor near Falmouth Windsport provide a first class online replacement parts service, alongside a personable technical support line via phone , email and other  social media.

Windsport  support 80% of Dart 18 sailing events , with a comprehensive spares and technical  support trailer and work shop, making sure sailors enjoy their weekends racing.

The  two day sponsored coaching weekend hosted at the Windsport training centre provides one of the best training locations in the UK with a wide variety of sailing conditions supported by great coaching equipment and expertise.

To be part of this exciting program , buy yourself a Dart and join the UK Dart18 Class Association (UKIDA) in 2016.

October 10, 2015 More

New Rig Sense Gauge – Get tuned

We are very excited to be able to offer the new Spinlock Rig Sense Gauge.  Available from CatParts here 09074


Rig Sense Gauge

As every sailor knows, rig set up is key to performance on the race course and it doesn’t matter whether you are on a Formula 18, F16 or one design Dart18.  Being able to repeat favourite rig settings for differing conditions throughout the season is even more important. Until now sailors had to rely on basic tools which often left them frustrated with inconsistency for critical rig measurements.

Accurately Measures in Kg

Rig Sense Gauge

Spinlock Rig-Sense is a new rig tuning tool developed for consistent and repeatable measurement of loads on wire and fibre. Compact, durable, lightweight and easy to handle, Rig-Sense uses a composite leaf spring that is calibrated to output repeatable tensile load readings to a direct linear scale in Kgs, rather than having to check and calculate loads on a complicated set of tables.

With Rig-Sense you can quickly and reliably take your readings to compare and adjust if needed against base settings, before heading out on the water.

Designed for 2-5mm wire and fibre cable Rig-Sense accurately displays rig loads on a clear, simple and durable etched display, ensuring teams can tune their rig with confidence. Due to its innovative design and use of materials such as stainless steel for the contact points and composite leaf spring, Rig Sense can be taken from boat to boat and loaned to others, confident in being able to share repeatable rig settings.

Spinlock CEO Chris Hill comments ‘Rig-Sense’ joins our growing Sense Range of data measuring tools. Sailors are becoming much more interested in measuring and capturing data to aid their performance, learning from time on the water to help improve long term performance. Rig-Sense offers a big improvement to the measurement of rig tension, making it simpler and easier for the sailor, and now coupled with the Rig-Sense App comes the ability to share and export data for later analysis with your team or sharing knowledge within a class’.

The free Rig-Sense App, available for both iOS and Android, allows users to work efficiently with their gauge, storing and managing the data on smart phones and tablets. Using the Rig-Sense app you can record data of critical settings to ensure repeatable race settings over differing conditions. Create your own custom templates to compile data for a range of boats or classes, add images and share and export data for later analysis with your class.


October 2, 2015 More

Dart 18 – The Nationals

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!Dart3


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.

Still waiting for the breeze to really fill in as promised but we will see. Dart4

Report 2

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!

Dart2So 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.Dart1

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.

Full Results

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.

August 26, 2015 More

Dart 18 Europeans – The Roundup

A belated  roundup of the Dart European regatta from the perspective of the Windsport pitts crew …WIndsport-Dart18-Euros

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 .
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. Windsport-Dart-Euro-Trophy

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.

August 19, 2015 More

Dart Europeans After 2 Days


Event Website: for pictures and up to date news:

Registration DayWS2
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.

Day 1
Wind moved to sea breeze early on in the day , just perfect for Dart18 sailing.
Fleet got away in race one first time .WS3
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 WS4and expects to be up with the pack tomorrow looking or a good result.

Day 2

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:…/euro-dart-18-pro…


August 4, 2015 More

Dart 18 European – Windsport Support

WSDartSupport-EuroWe 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

July 22, 2015 More

Tom Phipps aims to encourage young cat sailors


Tom working on the Dart 16 Fleet

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

To follow Tom Phipps visit


October 29, 2014 More

UKIDA – Windsport Sponsored Training Weekend

DART 18 Set up in Windsport boat park.

DART 18 Set up in Windsport boat park.

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.



October 1, 2014 More

Fabulous turnout for Barts Bash

12 Dart 18s turned out at RSC for Barts Bash 2014

12 Dart 18s turned out at RSC for Barts Bash 2014

We are delighted to ask all Dart 18 Catamaran sailors to take a bow – Fabulous to see at least 193 joined in over the weekend in the Bart’s Bash – Results are still coming in but brilliant to see such a turnout and that you ranked in the top 20 of classes represented through out the World.
At our local club Restronguet Sailing Club we had one of the biggest turnouts for the year with 12 boats on the start line.

#jobwelldone #BartsBash
September 24, 2014 More