Please select your home edition
Edition
Wildwind 2016 728x90

RS900 Women’s Olympic skiff contender testing underway

by Martin Wadhams on 20 Dec 2011
RS900 - Women’s Skiff Contender RS Sailing http://www.rssailing.com
Testing of the production specification RS900, RS Sailing’s women's Olympic skiff contender for Rio 2016, is underway.

'We believe that a new generation of elite skiff sailors deserve a purpose designed boat that will excel in the role and stand the test of time' says RS managing director, Martin Wadhams. 'After several changes to the women’s classes over recent Olympic cycles, the last thing anyone wants is another short term measure. We began the process several years ago believing that the RS800 could be modified to become the women’s skiff, but quickly realised that although it was arguably the most suited of the then current bunch, it would never be perfect for Olympic women. So our own RS team of Alex Southon and Nick Peters has worked with Phil Morrison to start from scratch and design the RS900 without compromise.'

The RS900 hull is shorter, narrower and has lower freeboard – smaller all round to suit light female teams. The reduced surface area allows a corresponding weight reduction whilst using a similar long lasting, epoxy foam sandwich construction system to the 800.


Fully integrated wide, solid wings and a smooth run-through deck on the RS900 facilitate athletic sailing. RS900 sailors will use techniques matched to those of the 49er men, allowing shared training in many regions, especially helpful for smaller sailing nations. As you can see from the photos, the wings fit smoothly into the hull providing arguably the most flowing platform of any skiff, plus structural integrity and seriously good looks.

Structural engineering has played a major part in the design development of the RS900. RS technical director Alex Southon has significant, hard-won, volume production experience and he has enlisted input from world class composite engineering experts in the USA on this project to help him create a boat that is not only strong and long lasting, but also efficient to build. This will keep costs low for a skiff of this type and the RS900’s price will in line with a competitive 470 rather than the similarly high performance 49er!


The rig is matched to wide leverage to produce spectacular performance whilst suiting the 110 -130kg crew weight range specified by ISAF. The jib is tacked onto the bow, with the forestay attachment point pushed as far forward of the forefoot as possible to give maximum low-down jib area, without excessive hull length and correspondingly reduced responsiveness. The relatively straight mast and square head mainsail follow the latest skiff design trends and, of course, a masthead spinnaker maximises downwind performance.

RS Sailing has the proven ability to produce a large number of epoxy racing dinghies quickly - last year around two hundred RS100s were built and delivered to destinations across the globe within 12 months of launch. Their international dealer network provides back-up support with parts and sails.

Final testing of RS900 will continue over the coming months in the run up to ISAF’s evaluation trials which are expected to be held in March 2012, although as Alex Southon says 'We’re talking about details now from a development perspective. The 900 works and all the sailors who’ve been in it so far are really excited – so we’ll just keep tweaking the rig and getting miles under the hull until we have to stop!' RS Sailing website

Zhik Dinghy 660x82Ensign 660Pantaenius - Worldwide Support

Related Articles

RS Feva Worlds tough competition till the end
The Allen and Magic Marine RS Feva Worlds 2011 have now wrapped up. The Allen and Magic Marine RS Feva Worlds 2011 have now wrapped up. 160 RS Fevas from three continents gathered on the shores of a brand new major event location at Bruinisse on the Grevelingen Lake in Holland. The two day qualification series started with a proper blow. Had the blow continued, there is little doubt that Jovian Short and James Barlow would now be World Champions.
Posted on 3 Aug 2011
RS Sailing develop RS900 as women’s 2016 Olympic skiff contender
RS Sailing is pleased to announce that they plan to develop the RS900 to compete for Women’s 2016 Olympic skiff Following ISAF’s final choice of sailing events for the 2016 Olympics, including a women’s skiff, RS Sailing is pleased to announce that they plan to develop the RS900 to compete for this role - subject to confirmation from the appointed Evaluation Team of their specific criteria for selection of this boat
Posted on 14 May 2011
RS Feva class introduced in Estonia
RS Feva class has been introduced in Estonia RS Feva class has been introduced into Estonia. Estonian Yachting Union in cooperation with Vopak E.O.S. introduced a fleet of 18 RS Feva sailboats to Estonia, creating a completely new opportunity for children and youth to take up double handed sailing on a two person dinghy.
Posted on 10 May 2011
RS Feva class adopted by Malta
Malta has become the latest country to launch the RS Feva class A sixteen boat fleet of Fevas was recently delivered to Malta, the latest country to adopt the class and more are expected in the coming months.
Posted on 21 Apr 2011
RS100 High Performance Single hander - Australian fleets grow
The first RS100 hit Australian waters back in September 2010, in that 7 months the exciting single hander has experience The first RS100 hit Australian waters back in September 2010, in the seven months since the exciting single hander has experienced steady growth. The Batemans Bay regatta catered for a broad spectrum of boats; from Trailer sailors to off the beach dinghies and catamarans,. Two RS100s sailed in Division 2 racing finishing in first and fifth place.
Posted on 13 Apr 2011
RS100 European Grand Prix series online entry
RS100 European GP series covers four brilliant events. RS100 European GP series covers four brilliant events. For anyone wishing to do all three of the continental events there are great savings to be had. Check out the possibilities and enter via the Class International website.
Posted on 7 Apr 2011
RS100 Twilight Demo Sailing - Sydney
With some great summer sea breezes forecast for the rest of the week, PSA will be holding RS100 Twilight Demo sail’s With some great summer sea breezes forecast for the rest of the week, Performance Sailcraft will be holding RS100 Twilight Demo sail’s
Posted on 23 Nov 2010
RS100 Twilight Demo Sailing - Sydney
With some great summer sea breezes forecast for the rest of the week, PSA will be holding RS100 Twilight Demo sail’s With some great summer sea breezes forecast for the rest of the week, Performance Sailcraft will be holding RS100 Twilight Demo sail’s
Posted on 22 Nov 2010
First ever RS100 UK National Championship 2010 - preview
UK National Championship - This weekend Parkstone Yacht Club will host for the new RS100 racing dinghy from RS Sailing. UK National Championship - This weekend Parkstone Yacht Club, Poole, UK will host for the new RS100 racing dinghy from RS Sailing. (4-5th September 2010)
Posted on 3 Sep 2010
Norwegian Sailing Federation expands RS Feva Class
Following last year’s highly successful project to boost junior sailing participation with the introduction of the RS Fe Following last year’s highly successful project to boost junior sailing participation with the introduction of the RS Feva to Norwegian sailing clubs, the Norwegian Sailing Federation (NSF) has just announced another opportunity for more clubs to become involved.
Posted on 1 Sep 2010