A couple of days from now I will participate in my first big Laser race since 1996. The race is the Canadian Laser Masters Championship, a race for those 35 or over. There are 3 categories, Apprentice 35-44, Master, 45-54, Grand Master for those 55 to 64 and Great Grand Master for those 65 and above.
A few older Laser sailors from Beaconsfield Yacht Club organized a sailing training camp for adults. 11 guys showed up and one lady. Even with the popularity of the radial rig, it seems difficult to find women on the race course. Coach Rob Koci from Toronto was invited and pushed us past our normal limits.
Saturday was light, we practiced lots of tacking and starts. It was a little bit frustrating as the wind was excellent before we rigged, while we had lunch and just after we came in. While we were out, it was light allowing us to feel how much roll was needed for a good roll tack.
Sunday morning was even worse: heavy rain and no wind. We watched and commented on videos of top sailors manoeuvring and talked about rules, tactics and how to make a boat go fast. We also ate early and this time we were in synch with the wind at 12. We had an excellent 3 hours of hiking, tacking, some involuntary swimming and lots of learning.
Thank-you Rob for this excellent clinic.
Editor's note: Etienne told me "I discovered how important the footwork was in the Laser. There are only so many right places to put feet in a 3 square foot cockpit, thanks to Rob for pointing them out for staying drier going downwind."