by Dean Barker
Dean Barker reports of the Extreme 40's in Oman:
Dean Barker, skipper of Emirates Team New Zealand, takes the helm of an Extreme 40 for the first time on day 1 of the Extreme Sailing Series™ Almeria.
We have been in Oman now for three days preparing for the first event of the Extreme 40 Sailing Series. It will be raced in Muscat from 20-24. We are currently in Mussanah which is a marina 45 miles to the north where a number of the teams have been training for the last month.
It has been a case of jumping straight back in and trying to get up to speed as quickly as we can. The nature of this racing with very short courses and a lot of maneouvring puts strong emphasis on starting and boathandling so time in the boat is very important. The training camp which has been running here for the last month as lifted the level of a number of the teams so we are trying hard to bridge that gap. In a three day practice regatta organised by the venue we had some mixed results but now have a good idea of how to keep developing our crew work aspect.
Today we are heading out to look at the new sails and to sign off on them. We will then do the 45 mile sail to the venue tomorrow and after a final weigh and measure at the race venue will get into some more training there.
All for now