RS400 Scottish Series, the first event for 2012, was held at Royal Findhorn over the weekend of 5th and 6th May. A healthy fleet of 12 RS400’s travelled north to be greeted with bright sunshine and a chilly northerly. Findhorn is a sleepy, end of the road type place on the Moray Coast, famous for it’s tidal sailing, microclimate and special licensing hours. The 400 fleet here has undergone something of a revival in the last year with seven home boats now (including two brand new transparent sail jobs) making it one of the strongest fleets in Scotland.
RS400 Start - RS400 Scottish Series at Royal Findhorn
Evergreen ex-Olympic coach Mark Barron laid on an excellent and varied programme covering all aspects of mastering the 400, from basic boatsetup, boat handling, starting technique, strategy and some heated debate on the rules. Saturday was the more challenging day, with the gusty force 2-5 making for excellent conditions for 'heed out the boat' practice, along with some interesting interpretations of the 'follow the leader' paradigm. Following an extensive video nasty debrief some of the more active (read younger) members went paragliding on the beach whilst the more mature retired to the luxurious bar. On Saturday evening the club laid on an excellent curry night , although regrettably most of the exhausted fleet were tucked up in bed by 10pm leading to a rather mediocre turnout at the Karaoke.
Sunday was a more sedate affair with a slightly later start and lots more start practice, followed by 10 back to back practice races. Mark and assistant principal race officer dogsbody Bruce Murdoch were very active , getting in and out of boats to offer direct advice and training to most of the fleet. After a second video debrief and Q+A session, all confirmed that Findhorn was an excellent venue and we look forward to returning for the weekend regatta and Findhorn week at the end of June. Noteworthy mentions of the weekend went to Phil Britton for losing both his rudder and his glasses in his first gybe on Saturday, Simon Grey for totally re-writing the rule book on start line barging and Rule 69, and Keith Bedborough for occasionally being over the line (due chiefly to Mr Murdoch’s dubious transit position hanging over the back of the RIBs outboard).
RS Class Association website