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Kit Guide

Practice Makes Perfect (Well Almost)

By 30th September 2020
On Saturday 15th of November, I joined four other Laser 4.7s at Burghfield SC for a day’s coaching. Since there was very little wind, we suggested to the coach Dan that we should practice roll tacks and roll gybes. This was an area which we all felt was a weak spot. We did a number of exercises, including tacking and gybing on the whistle and ‘elephant ears’ (tacking next to the coach boat). This is an exercise that I have never done before and helps the coach to pick out specific ways to improve roll tacks. However, after tacking all day, I noticed that I was having trouble crossing the boat and grabbing the gunwale after putting the roll onto the boat. After a number of capsizes I had a chat with the coach, who suggested that I cross the boat sideways in order to reach the gunwale and use the mainsheet more to pull myself in. I tried out these suggestions and had more success by the end of the day. However, there was still a lot of room for improvement. So I left looking forward to the next light wind day to put my roll tacks into practice……. …….And this last weekend presented the perfect opportunity. It was a Laser 4.7 Ladder event at Queen Mary SC, 6 races over 2 days. Saturday was incredibly light and shifty so it was important not to lose speed through the tack. I think my roll tacks have definitely improved and helped me to end the first day 6th overall. Sunday was foggy to start with, so racing was delayed to let the fog clear. At first the wind was marginal, similar to Saturday and slowly increased throughout the day, with the fog lifting quickly. I managed to get a 10, 3, 9. With a discard of 10th, I clinched 4th overall. This was my joint highest ladder result so far in the 4.7, which I was very pleased with. QMSC Sunday morning at QMSC, cold and foggy, I was very glad of my Rooster Pro Aquafleece Beanie On these light and shifty days the Rooster Pro Control Lines for the kicker, downhaul and outhaul really help with the fine control of the settings on my boat. The ropes run smoothly through the blocks and allow finer adjustment. It is a cheap upgrade that makes a real difference. Alex Butler.

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