by Chris payne
With the highly successful 2008 World Championship in Thailand over, it is time to review some of the gear used by the top salors.
Philip Popple and Steve Chesney - photo by Franz Bolweg
21 year old Matt Mee was sailing a standard hull from Winder Boats with Pinnel and Bax sails on a Selden Cumulus rig, setup by Richard Wagstaff (the crew) from Winder Boats'. David Wade/Ben McGrane were sailing a very similar setup, put together by David who works for Pinnel & Bax.
The other 21 year olds in the top 3, Nathan Stockley and Sam Muirhead, were sailing a 10 year old boat from Young Marine with a standard John Clifton Sails setup on a SuperSpar M7+.
Pinnel & Bax dominated the selection of sails in the top 10, but there were 5 different boat builders from 4 different countries, including Singapore. This shows the strength of the class's one design rules.
It was also great to see a full range of ages of competitors from 20 to 70 sailing the fireball, and a with a strong mix of women throughout the fleet.
Gear used by the top 10:
Place - Skipper - Crew - Skipper Wt - Crew Wt - Hull - Mast - Sails - Foils
1 Matt Mee Richard Wagstaff 64kg 80kg Winder Selden - Cumulus Pinnel & Bax Winder
2 David Wade Ben McGrane 69kg 80kg Winder Selden - Cumulus Pinnel & Bax Winder
3 Nathan Stockley Sam Muirhead 67kg 84kg YMS Superspar - M7+ Clifton Sails YMS
4 Greg Allison Richard Watson 65kg 80kg AFM/Kelly Marine Selden - Cumulus Clifton/Pinnel & Bax(Mainsail) YMS
5 Tomas Musil Jan Stantejsky 68kg 80kg Xtreme Sailing Products Superspar - M7+ Pinnel & Bax Xtreme Sailing Products
6 Heather Macfarlane Chris Payne 57kg 77kg AFM/Kelly Marine Goldspar Irwin Sails/North(Spinnaker) YMS/Kelly Marine(rudder)
7 Richard Estaugh Rob Gardener 74kg 80kg Winder Superspar - M7+ Speed Sails Winder
8 Eric Moser Ruedi Moser 74kg 76kg Duvoisin Selden - Cumulus Pinnel & Bax/Speed Sails(Spinnaker) Duvoisin/Winder(rudder)
9 Vince Horey Andrew Thompson 68kg 82kg Winder Selden - Cumulus Pinnel & Bax Winder
10 Richard Mason Simon Hextall 78kg 79kg Winder Selden - Cumulus Pinnel & Bax Winder
Up coming events for Fireball International include the 2008 European Championship, to be held in Nieuwpoort - Belgium from the 6th to the 11th July 2008 and the 2009 Worlds will be held in August in La Rochelle - France.
Check out the details at http://www.fireball-international.com