Diary Entries: 374
23rd August 2020
Wind Direction: WSW
Wind Stength: 8-15kts
Surf / Sea State: flat
Air Temperature: warm
Sea Temperature: warm
Weather: Sunny / cloud
Max Speed: 17.3 kts (knots - unless stated otherwise)
Distance Covered: 21 nm (Nautical Miles - unless stated otherwise)
Another 5 star day at Bradfield and yet again arrived an hour late because
the tides have been so high – up to the field edge, the others were
launching. You can now easily launch foils 3 hour be4 tide for sure.
Wind was west to WSW windy at times, then would drop to very light. Just
could not make my mind up between 9.3 S type North, a very very nice sail
with 3 great cams that rotate like a dream or the 7.8. The other choice do
I use the 84 or 76 Slingshot wing?. Choices choices. Guinea pig Neil went
out on 7.5 and didn’t appear over powered so went with 9.3 / 84 SL front
The place was crowded with the usual regulars + plus SUP’s and canoes. The
camping field also looked full of campers of all varieties, with a nice
looking teepee style tents. They are amazing roomy. I watch a camper put
one up, who made it look very easy. The burger bar doing a roaring trade.
Nick and Colsey went out with 9.5’s over the far side and was going full
pelt, so knew I had made the right choice – although the Slingshot 84 wing
is dog slow.
Sailed up to Mistley as the wind always seemed cleaner there, don’t know
why, whilst the others went towards Holbrook bay. Today I decided to just
concentrate on downwind runs and not use the rear strap. I find that boring
not being in both straps but have decided to do what most people do.
Had an easy run down to the Holbrook bay without breaching in around 15kts
out of the back strap so I guess that technique is best. Nice beats (my fav
direction) in both straps back up to Mistley flying high in the middle to
clear the large swell then low as the wind really filled in. Def got the
hang of that now.
This time I decided to make one last effort to stay in rear straps (set max
outer) and still go max downwind. Came a cropper after 100 mtrs or so as
the speeding foil breeched and I couldn’t correct in time. Staying in
straps feels much more like windsurfer on wide style boards, but as I hate
falling in now, stayed out of the back straps.
Neil and James were flying great and in fact I turned tack immediately I
saw Neil in a good gust to race him over to the far side. We were both
flying mid mast – which is good for Neil as he has only just started.
Incredibly I couldn’t catch him. He maintained board speed the whole
journey flying across the river. He has def got it now. I blamed the dog 84
Slingshot front wing – as you can walk faster than it ffs!
I joined Colsey and Nick who was up at Mistley as they turned for the
downwind run again, trying to learn of them. We started flying the same
time as the wind was up, but they sailed at a ridiculous downwind angle
which was impossible for me! I forced the board that broad it just stalled
out, so had to pick up speed 20 degrees higher. They are smashing it
downwind for sure. Now can ride boring slow downwind unless windy, but the
harness lines keep dropping out as too long for that leg.
To ruin the day, Graham came whizzing past me on Colsey’s old Starboard 177
I was interested in but he got there first. In fact Graham clocked 26.7
knots on his GW-60 watch. None of us believed it, so we checked the history
log and sure enough the speed did build up maxing out at 100 meters – so it
wasn’t a spike! He said he cleared the history from his last formula
sailing. He was fast today, walking all over me and fought off the pass
from a fast sailing Nick.
Brilliant day – the wind dropped a few times but was up most times on the
big kit. I tried a few gybes but always messed it up just before the flip.
The board is flying through a wide arc, but as I changed foot (I stayed
wrong sided as long as poss) – the board drops like a stone and I wipe out.
Am not far away, know where am going wrong, so just have to start the gybe
higher on the foil mast. Andy M – a Felixstowe foiler flew from Felixstowe
Manor to almost Clacton, which was an epic ride for sure.
Foiling is very easy on the body which is handy. I had a very windy day
yesterday over powered but had no stiffness and today I could have easily
sailed another 3hrs which I did today without coming in. Either foiling is
easy of my fitness OK. Theoretically I can foil everyday - but cant fin
ever day as too knackered!
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