Top 5 Speed Tips with Zara Davis

The UK’s very own Zara Davis has currently been out in Namibia for over a week now at the world famous speed trench in Luderitz. Already known for inflecting far too much pain on herself, Zara racked up a pretty hefty stitch count last year, we heard in excess of 50 stitches! Despite this, she showed her no fear approach and returned again this year, so how could it possibly get any worse? Well read on to see her update below and check out the top tips from the speedster herself..

Namibia news

We have had no wind now for 5 days. The first 3 days of the challenge were good winds up to about 40 knots and some national records were broken:
Belgian – Patrick van Hoof.
German – Manfred Merle
Luxembourg – David Garrel.

I had a bad crash on my last run of the day – unlucky, I twisted my knee and ruptured a ligament on the inside. I am waiting for a brace from Ossur to come from the UK so I can sail on. There will be wind on wednesday hopefully so I will try it out then.

In the meantime there is always stuff to do…

Top 5 tips to help you go faster (that isn’t to do with tuning)
1. Get a good start – in the canal that’s super important as there isn’t much space but even on your home strip don’t try to speed up as you are in the run. really focus on coming in to the flat bit as fast as possible.

2. For the canal get the corner right – sheet in and sling shot into the course – on your home spot if you have to change direction, and in most spots if you want to go broader you do have to change direction, don’t sheet out as you do so.

3. Work on the lulls – be efficient about moving your weight around to keep the MFP on and the sail sheeted in, without over-sheeting. In the canal there is a soft spot just after the start that if you don’t glide through well you will lose all your speed.

4. Be ready for the gusts try not to open the sail, go broader if your not in a canal!!! Maybe wear weight (take care that your neutrally buoyant – its the rules, and for once a pretty sensible one!!!!)

5. 500m and 5×10 seconds are different skills – if your spot allows it don’t forget the 500m – its harder to maintain a good speed for that long.


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