In December we ran a story about how a young Moroccan sailor was in Thailand training to sail a 150nm course in a tiny Laser to break the world record. (See http://www.sail-world.com/CruisingAus/Yassine-to-attempt-150nm-Laser-sail---once-his-mast-is-fixed/104932!Sail-World_story). His problem was, his mast was broken and he couldn't afford a new one. Now, thanks to our Asia Editor Guy Nowell and UK Sailmakers Hong Kong representative, Barry Hayes, who read the story, things are looking up for Yassine Darkaoui.
Yassine was set to go, training hard, but his mast was broken. Now, thanks to UK Sailmakers, he has not only a new mast, but also two new sails to replace the old one above.
Uk Sailmakers have kindly sent Yassine, not only a new mast for his record attempt, but also their greatest high-performance sails, not one, but two.
New mast, still in the wrapping
Yassine is a science and IT graduate, he has represented Morocco at several World Laser Sailing Championships, and is a qualified sail trainer with his home club, the Royal Yacht Club of Tangier.
He is attempting to beat the 2009 record held by Olympic bronze medalist, Australian Michael Blackburn, who sailed a Laser dinghy 117 nautical miles across Bass Strait (between the Australian mainland and Tasmania) in 13 hours.
The purpose of the sail, apart from his personal challenge, is to draw attention to the evils of illegal drug-taking. This is a goal dear to his heart, owing to an earlier period in his life in Morocco, when he fell victim to drug-taking himself.
Naturally, Yassine is delighted that his way is now clear to finalise preparations for the challenge, and grateful for those who made it possible. 'So,' he said this week, 'it's back to the water in the coming days for the last step of my trainings. I am eager to try the ultra performing sail.'
Yassine's new sail 'I can't wait to try it out'
You can follow Yassine Darkaoui on his www.http://andamanlaserchallenge.blogspot.com.au/!website, or contact him at totemtech [at] gmail.com.
Next time you're thinking of buying a new sail, remember www.ukhalsey.com!UK_Sailmakers. They have nearly 50 sail lofts worldwide, so one of them must be near you. They really deserve this free commercial - and don't forget to tell them why you contacted them..