Sigma 38 Racing
Why do we keep getting pulled into racing when really we are dreaming of cruising??
Because we keep meeting such gosh darn nice people that persuade us to join them, that's why.
We spent Sunday crewing on a a Sigma 38. As jib and general trimmer to be exact. And it was a great day.
Once again we learned tons by being on a new team on a new yacht design with a new set up.
And there's nothing like racing to usefully underline how critical knowing when and where the tide is.
Learning more about tides
Watching the other boats pull ahead (thanks to the effects of the tide) is both instructive and devastating. Watching them fall behind (for the same reason) is fantastic.
And all this underlining happens when you are far from shore, marinas and most other nasty stationary obstacles that crop up with such regularity when you are cruising.
My First Mate, being from the other side of the pond, has never had to deal with tides before this year really. Here in the Solent, it's something that affects your every move. It's still not instinctive for him and he's learned a LOT. This season great strides have been made.
Thinking about yacht design research
Now all these racing boats do tend to be fin and skeg designs under the water. Not the ideal seaworthy long distance cruising design at all, we agree.
Still, getting to ride different types of yacht designs - even racing designs - is extremely informative. Loads of good learning to be had.
We've got to start trying out some classic cruising designs again, however, to further our design research which we must say, has fallen a tad by the wayside recently.
This past season, we have been focusing on on-the-water training. Now with the winter closing in on us, we need to shift gears and pound out some good design research in the dark months ahead.
Then having honed our cruising design list yet again, we'll rig up a new plan to seek opportunities to somehow get on/ get near/ get familiar with those targeted cruising designs... to bring us the next step further towards our goals.
(transcribed by the Can Opener)