A couple of weeks ago, Tilda an I jumped back into the RS Feva for the Grand Prix at Draycote water. The conditions were very light and fluky making it really hard to read the winds. The wind was blowing over a hill then through a group of trees causing the wind to dispersed when it hit the water.
We didn’t start the regatta as hoped with some very bad races however, we believe that this has a lot to do with not sailing together for a large period of time so we needed to get used to sailing together again. This progressed for the majority of the regatta. As we began to regain our confidence in the boat.
Due to a poor wind forecast on Sunday, they planned to do 5 races on Saturday. Our first three results we disappointing as we got a 21st, 28th and 31st. We knew we were a lot more capable than this we talked about what was going wrong and improved our results. In the 4th race, we had a couple of minutes with heavier winds. Before the 5th race, we changed our rig because the winds began to pick up and we managed to get plaining downwind, which was a lot of fun. On the last upwind leg, we were gaining on the lead boat but didn’t quite catch up but still secured a 6th and a 3rd.
Overall, it was a very good regatta as we got used to sailing the boat again but we knew we had more in us and believed we could have done a lot better than our finishing place of 17th. Since this regatta, Tilda and I have been training and enjoying sailing the boat again. We are both looking forward to our next regatta.
From 24th August – 26th August I competed in the RS Tera Nationals at Brightlingsea SC. I decided to do this event for fun and to sail the boat one last time, I was expecting to be mid-fleet due to lack of practice.
On Friday afternoon, I went out with Esme Barraclough to do some training to familiarise the boat after not sailing it for a year. The training consisted of learning how to rig and de-rig the boat all over again, tacks, gybes, upwind and downwind.
When I first went out, I was really uncomftable in the boat and struggling to maneuver. However, as training progressed, I began to improve, felt more controlled and began to master the roll tacks and gybes.
On Saturday 24th August, the competion began. The conditions were very difficult due to the light winds and tidal area. The weather was really hard to read due to the tide there were many advantages coming from being able to lee bow the tide – creating a lift, however, this didn’t always work. On the first start, unfortunately, I was over after pushing the line too hard. Thankfully it was a blue peter do I was able to sail back over the line and continue the race. At the first windward mark, I was near the back of the fleet but constanly gaining. I managed to Finish the race 7th which gave me a confidene boost as I knew I was able to get a better result with a better start. At the end of the day, I was lying in 3rd with a 7th, 7th, 3rd and 4th.
Day 2 – the races were very close between the whole fleet, with some sailors achieving what they wanted and others not. The conditions were very similar to the first day, but with some larger gusts. For three of the races I was 1st at the windward mark however due to a lack of time on the water, I was loosing out a little on the downwind legs. I didn’t let this affect me, I recapped on what I thought I did wrong and spoke to my coach for the event, Sophie Johnstone. For the majority of the races you were able to just about lee bow the tide, but due to the shifty winds, I decided to play it safe and short tack on the shifts throught the tide roughly up the middle of the course which seemed to pay all day. At the end of day 2, I was lying in 3rd but now only 1 point behind 2nd but 4th hot on my stern.
Day 3 and it was all to pay for. The tide was in our favour upwind today as it was going out. However, this lead to a lot of general recalls due to some boats being pushed over the line. I managed to beat 2nd and 4th in both races, PUTTING ME INTO 2ND OVERALL!
I secured two 2nds on the last day and after some very tight races, the event was already over.
Alice Davies one the pro fleet by a 20 points – it’s safe she made the least mistakes throughout the regatta. I was very pleased that I finished with all top 10 results and second overall. Matthew won the Sport fleet with all by 3 points with Toby Smith right behind him. Due to some good results from the Yorkshire Dales SC sailors, we won the club trophy again, after winning it at the Inland Championships.
To conclude, it was very enjoyable regatta and an amazing feeling to be back in the Tera for the last.
In July, Eilish Graham and I competed in the RS Feva World Championships In Follonica, Tuscany, Italy. The event lasted 5 days with 6 qualifying races and 8 fleeted races. This world championship was the largest RS Feva World Championships with 200 boats entered and 400 competitors, 99% children. Due to the numbers, there was a qualifying series that lasted 2 days and consisted of 6 races.
At the beginning of the qualifying series, you were given a flight that you would compete in for that day. The aim of the qualifying series was to allow everyone to race against one another in order for the final series to be fleeted by ability.
Unfortunately, Eilish and I were put into two hard flights meaning that our results weren’t as good as other people due to not sailing together very much. This lead to us ending up in the silver which neither of us was pleased about. However, the following day we went into the Final series with the aim to win, but not everything went in our favour.
The conditions throughout the regatta were very consistent, there were light winds and minimal tides. This was good as you were able to grasp what was advantageous and disadvantages.
The first day of the final series was a good start to the regatta, we were able to pick out the bias side of the course and punch through the waves. In the first race, we ended up 13th which we knew we were able to improve on. Our 2nd race was by far the best race of the regatta. We followed an Italian boat around the windward mark and slowly began catching them up on the tight reach. We lost a bit of ground downwind as they were lighter than us but we didn’t let that stop us. On the upwind beat, we fought our hardest and managed to overtake the Italians and continue taking ground away from them for the rest of the upwind beat. By the end of the race, we were half a leg ahead of the Italians. At the end of the day, we were in 1st place in the silver fleet, with a 13th, 1st and 6th.
Day 2 of the final series didn’t go as we wanted. Our races got worse throughout the day and we both thought we had blown it. However, this wasn’t the case, we had only dropped down to 2nd place. Due to the wind being pretty consistent and not much tide it was hard to make advantages but quite easy to lose out. At the end of the day, we had a 6th, 16th and 21st. We both knew that this wasn’t our strongest day of the regatta and that we needed to sail our best in the last 2 races.
The final day finally came and we had a massive problem in the last race. Our rig tension came off! Due to having no rig tension, we had no pointing ability and we ended up rounding the mark 2nd to last. On the reach, we tried to gain as much room on other boats ahead but we weren’t that successful. On the downwind, we took a risk and broke away from the fleet to try to get clean air. While sailing downwind, Eilish added a purchase to the forestay to help pull it on downwind. To do this, I had to take the spinnaker as well as pumping the main sheet down the back of the waves. This was very difficult but Eilish was done quickly and we continued with the race. Even though we had a bad last race our first race wasn’t too bad but after the disaster, we were expected to drop a couple of positions. Thankfully, we only dropped one place and still ended ip in 3rd place. On the last day, we had an 11th and 31st
Well done to Raulf Berry and Olly Peeters who took home the Title of RS Feva World champions, while Olympian Simon Cooke and Osker Masfen won the competition, but weren’t allowed to take the title because Simon Cooke is over the age of 18.
"Yorkshire Dales is a great club for children and young people and for beginners - it’s friendly and lots of fun, and really supportive as well, with lots of people who are willing to help and encourage you on the water.”
Follonica, Tuscany, Italy
38 degrees Celsius
We have had no issues with the tent at all. Due to our sheltered position from any wind, we have not even needed to tie it down. We have had a few large gusts of wind and the tent has not moved.
Pumped up the day we arrived and they have not lost any pressure at all. With blistering heat the beams are standing up well and do not get softer at night when they cool down.
Best investment one could do if you are heading to the heat. We could not go in the tent a few weeks ago in 30 degree back in Rutland, but now with the liner it is still hot but not radiating heat. When we put the liner up in the heat the difference was immediate.
I would also recommend Outdoor Revolution looking at a liner option for the front porch. This would work for the less windy camping spots in the heat.
St Aidan's CE High School girl Beth Miller was the first-placed girl and an impressive second overall at the RS Tera Pro World Championships at RS Games in Weymouth Portland, sailing in the 66-strong RS Tera Pro fleet for older juniors in the class, likewise having to contend with some strong breezes. Over five days and 12 races, Beth's results included a race win and two seconds, plus a consistent set of top 10 finishes to secure the girls' title by a clear margin.