Thursday, June 25, 2009

Laser Carving Downwind (vs. Finn)

No sooner did I post about Laser Carving Downwind than another YouTube popped up; this one of a Laser vs. a Finn downwind. As you watch the video you notice the Laser's course change is more radical than the Finn's. This is also one of Erik Bower's pithy observations; the Laser being lighter and more nimble than the Finn, there are more gains offwind for the Laser in the larger angles of up and down. That being said, the Finn class allows unlimited pumping when the wind is greater than 12 knots. Not sure if the wind is 12 knots but I would suspect the Olympic Finn sailors would be "air rowing" all the time in these conditions.

You may catch a glimpse of the dinghy ahead of these two, at one point rocking and rolling close to capsizing. This is a production RS300, longer, high aspect ratio fully battened rig, but the closest production singlehanded design to the narrow waterline Gen 2 Classic Moths. Mothist's who have sailed Mistral designs can sympathize. Sometimes the best way to get these Moths downwind is to eschew the fancy stuff, keep it bolt upright and steer for the mark.

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