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Kit Guide

Training - Done, Ready to Race - You Bet!

By James Dowrick 2nd October 2020
This winter I have been training with what will now probably be known as the "Cornish Laser Squad" down at Restronguet SC, Falmouth. The Restronguet Laser sailors have been really kind, helpful & welcoming so thank you guys! I normally race at Porthpean which is about an hour up the south coast from Restronguet but nobody is keen to sail through the winter, can't blame them. So my challenge is to get them in to Rooster Supertherms & Aquafleeces by next winter so I don't have to travel to go sailing (it all adds up over time). The training down at Restronguet has been really good, we have sailed pretty much every Sunday since the end of January, except for when there has been qualifiers or other events happening. The training we have been doing has been very informal but very productive. Each week we would concentrate on certain areas but carry it out in the same way, normally setting quite a reasonably sized course, sailing around but always trying to focus on the individual areas of our sailing. Age and ability ranged but I'm pretty sure we all gained at least a handful of things from each other. This weekend we were lucky enough to be joined by Dan Holman for both the Saturday & Sunday. For those of you who don't know who Dan is, he's a former Olympic Laser squad member and training partner for Paul Goodison. More recently he is the brains and designer behind the new D-Zero that launched in 2014 which is being built by Devoti. Saturday morning was all about getting to know Dan and having a chat about what we wanted to get from the weekend, we then sat in the "classroom" and he talked us through subjects that we all raised from the beginning of the session which was really useful as we could then go and put it into practice on the water in the afternoon. The forecast for Saturday was 25knts gusting 35knts, I think we probably got 20 gusting 30, still windy enough. We were probably on the water for about 3 1/2 hours doing lots of different exercises & drills. The day was finished off with a short de-brief with the aid of some on the water videos that Dan had captured throughout the day. Sunday was a little bit of a wash out as we turned up to an estuary that looked more like the white water rapids, 50 knot gusts were howling through so we stayed inside continuing to talk about yesterday and any topics we wanted to cover- hot on the list was starting and sail setup. We did go outside for a bit, going through the Laser rigging & setup to see where we could make gains in that area. We also did a spacial awareness game that linked in with the starting discussion. All in all I learnt so much over the weekend, from little things like the best way to roll the sail which can help with rigging/de-rigging time plus expanding the life of the sail. My main area of gains were downwind manoeuvring and starting. So a massive thanks to Dan for all his help. As far as a kit bag update goes, the PolyPro Leggings & Supertherm Top are both still a key feature. I would hope they will filter out in replacement for a ThermaFlex Top within the next month when it warms up a little. I'm looking forward to getting the Pro Lite Aquafleece in the kit bag soon, Its going to be perfect for Spring & Summer days where you need a little bit of wind chill protection. Thats all for this blog, enjoy the start of the season wherever you are. Happy Sailing, James (Team Rooster)

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