Please select your home edition
Edition
Doyle Sails NZ - Never Look Back

A-Cat Worlds Practice Race recap and race format update

by William Clark on 23 Oct 2012
Practice Race - 2012 A-Cat Worlds Sam Moore
The initial plan, given the tremendous size of the 2012 Ronstan A-Class Catamaran World Championship, was to split the fleet into four divisions and have each division race each other in a round robin group stage, with the top half of each group moving on to the championship round on day four and the bottom half racing in the silver division. It was an idea borrowed from the F18, a class that Principal Race Officer Billy Richnow of The Great Texas Race fame is very familiar with. However with the forecast for the event looking aggressive and high winds expected to bring fleet numbers down somewhat, regatta organizers have decided to go back to the traditional fleet racing format.

'Well if the breeze does what it is expected to do the numbers should come down to a more manageable level' said Regatta Chairman Ben Hall, 'and the idea is that if we can run a 100 boat regatta we should be able to run a 105 or 110 boat regatta.' The forecast for the event is winds of 15 knots or more all week with Tuesday looking particularly nasty, and the idea that this could compromise the quality of the qualifying races ultimately turned the race committee against the idea. 'The number one goal is to have a good regatta' said Hall, 'and the last thing we want is people feeling like they got short changed on the qualifying races.

The event practice race went off on Monday afternoon following the conclusion of measurement and registration, with Australia’s Jack Benson winning the first beat and holding off Steve Brewin and Mischa Heemskerk to get the gun. However there were also some significant casualties. American Mark Skeels’ mast broke after his spreader bracket ripped out, Australia’s Nathan Outteridge didn’t make it to the race course thanks to a rudder and dagger board blowing up on the way out, and Great Britain’s Chris Field also lost his rudder when he ran over a turtle on the first beat. When asked if he had killed the offending reptile the unapologetic Field replied 'I hope so.'

Whether the conditions will affect the outcome of the regatta is unclear since, though the A-Cat fleet does get spaced out when the breeze comes up, it is hard to say that the conditions actually work in any one competitors favor.

'As in any other class you see guys around the top in heavy air that wouldn’t normally be there, just like you see guys at the front in light stuff who wouldn’t be there if it were breezy' said Regatta Co-Chair Ben Moon. 'But in general the fast guys are fast regardless of what the wind does.'

There are sailors in the fleet with a history of good results in difficult conditions. The current World Champion Steve Brewin took home first place in 2011 by catching Scott Anderson on the final day in extremely aggressive conditions. But if the practice race is any indication the gaps will be bigger and mistakes will be magnified, but the top sailors will be around the top no matter what the weather does. Only now the variable of the qualifying races has been A Class Catamaran World Championship website
Harken AUS Reflex 660x82InSunSport - NZT Clewring - Generic

Related Articles

Shadow Catamaran Nationals go down to the last race at Gurnard
2016 Shadow Catamaran 2016 Nationals were held at friendly Gurnard Sailing Club on the Solent The 2016 Shadow Catamaran 2016 Nationals were held at friendly Gurnard Sailing Club on the Solent (the sunset side of Cowes) from 17th to 19th June. The Shadow X is a high performance single-handed catamaran with an asymmetric spinnaker.
Posted on 24 Jun
Volvo Round Ireland Race starts with eclectic mix of boats and crews
The Volvo Round Ireland Race started in 10 to 11 knots of southerly wind and a fair tide. The Volvo Round Ireland Race started in 10 to 11 knots of southerly wind and a fair tide. The first fleet away were the 55 monohulls consisting of a vast mixture of boats and crews. From one of the fastest offshore race boats in the world, George David’s Juan K designed Rambler 88 to Darryl Hughes’s Shepherd 43’ Classic, Maybird.
Posted on 18 Jun
Volvo Round Ireland Race – Multihulls and MOD70s are up for challenge
The 704 nautical mile race has a simple course; Leave Ireland and all its islands, excluding Rockall, to starboard. The 704 nautical mile race has a simple course; Leave Ireland and all its islands, excluding Rockall, to starboard. However in reality the race has a complexity of wind angles, tides and a real taste of ocean sailing along the hauntingly beautiful west coast of Ireland. The first official non-stop race around Ireland was held in 1980.
Posted on 17 Jun
Road to Rio – One Olympic venue to the next
Sailing World Cup touched down in Weymouth and Portland last week and it was one of the last official organised regattas The Sailing World Cup touched down in Weymouth and Portland last week and it was one of the last official organised regattas before the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. It gave the future Olympians an opportunity to test themselves one last time against their Rio competitors, in a full race setting, before the summer showpiece.
Posted on 15 Jun
Tornado Worlds – Greek defenders retain the lead on Day 2
Sun, wind and rain on and off – these were the ingredients of the weather kitchen on Monday, the second race day. Sun, wind and rain on and off – these were the ingredients of the weather kitchen on Monday, the second race day of the championship of the Tornado class in Lindau.
Posted on 14 Jun
Tornado Worlds – Tough kick-off as the Greeks head for title defense
The Lake Constance claimed its tribute during the first two races at the world championship of the Tornado class Numerous capsizes and damages lead to significant numbers of retirements. Eleven competitors only out of 32 could finish the first race.
Posted on 13 Jun
World Sailing invites bids for 2017 and 2018 Annual Conference
Annual Conference brings together more than 400 delegates over a seven-day period every first full week of November. World Sailing's Annual Conference brings together more than 400 delegates over a seven-day period every first full week of November. It is the central meeting point where the strategy of sailing is reviewed, discussed and celebrated.
Posted on 7 Jun
World Sailing completes final on-site review of the Rio 2016 Olympic
Briefings were provided over two days on key operational and service areas for the Olympic Games. Briefings were provided over two days on key operational and service areas for the Olympic Games, including venue construction, competition schedules, broadcasting, media operations, accommodation, transportation and ticketing.
Posted on 26 May
The World Championships just keep on coming
Last week was the finish of the Finn Worlds. Torch passed to the Laser Standard currently in Mexico having their Worlds. While the Olympic torch is being passed from person to person on its trip to Rio 2016, the Olympic and Paralympic classes are doing the same as the World Championships torch passes along on its tour around the world to Brazil.
Posted on 18 May
GC32 Alps Challenge Traunsee - Hat-trick for Adam Minoprio in Norauto
Clear victory for the French team, Norauto, helmed by New Zealand’s Adam Minoprio. The GC32’s first ever match racing event, the GC32 Alps Challenge Traunsee concluded on Austria’s breathtaking Lake Traunsee on Sunday with a clear victory for the French team, Norauto, helmed by New Zealand’s Adam Minoprio.
Posted on 17 May