10 Year Avg Turnout for UK National Championship; Laser 81, Solo 77
2011 National Championship; Solo 95, Laser 81
And before Tillerman puts up his hand and says yes, but..... yes, I know there are no Solo dinghies in North America, or Denmark, or South Africa, or the Phillipines or......
But, in dinghy mad UK, these are certainly intriguing numbers. Any UK readers of Earwigoagin that want to shed light on how the Solo class, designed by Jack Holt in 1956, is hanging with the Laser? I would be very interested in hearing what the Solo Dinghy is doing right.
I've posted about the Solo Dinghy before; a vintage video here , and an amazing heavy air photo here .
Meanwhile here is a very well done promo video for the Solo dinghy
Rupert Whelan added a comment which directly addressed some of my questions...........
"The Solo (also known as the SoSlow or Slowlo) isn't fast, but gives fantastic close racing. I owned one a few years ago, but it was old and bendy, and I decided I could get a better boat for the money (a Lightning 368, another UK only boat) but the modern version is very stiff, is bomb proof thanks to the highish minimum weight, has a powerful fully batten 8 sqm sail and is raced by many of the top sailors in the country. In light winds it will leave a Laser behind, but once hull length comes into play, the Laser will sail away, especially in waves. As for Lasers and speed, there are plenty of faster singlehanders over here, but none have caught on in the same way as the Laser or Solo, so speed obviously isn't all - we set ourselves boundaries in order to get fair, close racing at a cost we can afford, otherwise we would be over in Namibia with Paul Larsen and his Vestas Sailrocket trying to hit 60 knots..."