Friday, January 8, 2010

Peter Alarie Clinic Notes: Hampton Fall 2009

Thanks to Parry Barclay for providing these notes from their clinic in Hampton, VA. Lots of great tips and tricks here:

Tactics can change depending on the type of day that it is. Verbally identify what kind of day it is prior to race…..pressure day, side favored day, shift day etc. Light, puffy wind days are usually pressure days – pressure more important than shifts or anything else.

Parry/Macy lead race then tacked on a shift ending up on lifted tack and near layline but not taking them towards the building pressure. Parry/Macy's tack would often be correct move on other type of days but incorrect move on “pressure day” like today where you had to sail into the pressure deeper despite being headed.

Sails must be flatter in light stuff so less drag and so main and jib can be trimmed more. Leeches must be dynamic not stagnant so that sails don’t stall. Stalled sails are indicated by sagging leach tell tail and boat feeling temperamental….hard to keep at correct angle of heel. Every time Peter sees a boat over heel to windward he looks up and sees closed stalled leaches at the same time. Leach should open up the very second that main is eased. If leech looks same after main is eased, vang is too tight.

Spend time ducking under boom and looking at leech of jib prior to race so can get feel for what is fast. Then, replicate the settings using jib sheet marks. Jib sheet needs two marks rather than one because one mark can disappear in block. Parry eases jib ¼ inch on Peter’s recommendation and jib leech looks way more open. Peter says is leech tell tales stall for more than a second then jib is too chocked. Crew must ease jib an inch once he transitions from wire to sitting on tank. Must adjust jib cars for different velocities. West coast sailors have abandoned their simplified approach of not changing jib car position. Jib and main leeches should look the same and have matching twist.

Spin sheet over bow? Skipper stays off the deck. Crew can drop all the way down and walk all the way fwd and clear it.

Put mark on vang for downwind setting so skipper can easily set vang before windward mark. It is generally about 2 feet.

Crew must not ease spin sheet going into the gybe. If kite is luffing going into gybe it is almost impossible to get back full quickly.

Skipper can aim at the kite during gybe to ensure good gybe. If something goes wrong…aim at the kite.

Respect pressure in kite. Trust the pressure. Don’t try to match angles of other boats because they may have already heated up, built apparent wind etc. Stay committed to your angles on final approach to leeward mark. Don’t pinch down for more than a few boat lengths on final approach to mark.
With new double pole system crew should not pull kite out of launcher because it puts slack in guy and makes it twist. Crew must wait on launching the pole to prevent guy from twisting. Pole should set at same time that the halyard hits top of mast. Goal is that both corners of kite reach their position simultaneously.

With side launcher, skipper must aim downwind a bit fore a second while hoisting.

Turn boat on jibes all the way until the exit angle. Utilize the entire range. Visualize exit angle prior gibing.

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