A herd of shiny butterflies
by Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia on 18 Aug 2008
Very sorry, but the finer points of windsurfing escape this observer. They all take off a gallop (assuming there’s enough breeze, which there was today) and then scatter in different directions, flapping like a herd of shiny butterflies. For the next however-long they dash about all over the racecourse, apparently in random directions. It is really very hard to actually ‘read’ the race.
Qingdao Olympic Regatta 2008. Guy Nowell © http://www.guynowell.com
Halfway through today’s first race the camera boat was waiting patiently in the general area of the start when one of the competitors appeared at a rate of knots from somewhere outside and downwind of the Committee Boat. Explain that on a trapezoid course.
The wind strength had dropped off a little by the second race, and we watched proceedings from the top end of the course, which somehow seemed to make a lot more sense. Someone told us the other day that the energy expended by a windsurfer in a light airs race (when lots of ‘pumping’ is required) is the same as a runner in a 10,000 metre race… and then they do another race. No wonder some of the fleet looked absolutely beat by the end.
Me, I prefer my sailing sitting down, no less than 40 ft, and no getting wet either (it’s not good for the camera - like yesterday).
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