Poole Slalom Racing – 19th July 2008
Another good turn out, this time on a Saturday afternoon, with the difficult
call at the bottom of Evening Hill in the harbour at Sandbanks.
A few more new and very welcome faces – the word is spreading… 15+ guys on
the water at the same time. A special guest appearance from Cribby (taking a quick break
from his clinic and rubber fetishist activities), who joined us for just one race and was welcome.
Dom Tidey (RYA windsurfing coach) also promises to keep coming back again
after his stint in Beijing (best of luck to all the sailors, especially Nick
With a gusty and shifty wind between west and north west, setting true figure of eight courses
was difficult but everyone was patient and we had some epic racing on sails between
6 and 9 metres. Dodging between the moored yachts and racing dinghies added to the
challenge of the choppy water…
One thing’s for sure – the good guys can now hold down the big sails necessary to cruise
through the lulls and still survive in the gusts. This slalom kit is astonishingly exciting to sail
compared to freeride blasting up and down and the extra performance easily outweighs the ‘handling
Nearly everyone had a go at the front at some stage and some are really hammering through the
gybes now, picking up 3 or 4 places in the process. James Dinsmore and Russell Hanford are
especially fast and consistent. The handicap starts mostly work well and help to keep the red
mist at bay and the atmosphere friendly.
The wind increased to around 20 knots later on, conditions flattened off with the tide ebbing and
the remaining hardcore guys had a couple of screaming downwinders with the very fit Fred Willis
showing the rest a clean pair of heels.
I’m off to order a bigger sail right now so that next time I will be in contention too…
See you all soon (today looking promising…)