sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Perth 2011 - Not always happy families on Olympic class sailing scene

Perth 2011 - Not always happy families on Olympic class sailing scene

'Laser radial cut sail- great but expect 2013'    Mike Calin    Click Here to view large photo

At the Sydney Olympics 2000 there was a major drama when the 49er sailors found their event supplied spinnakers, with national flags dyed into the fabric, were completely disintegrating. Sailing was cancelled for a day as new spinnakers were built.

There could be a major drama looming at Perth 2011, the key sailing qualifying event for the London Olympics, with large numbers of mast equipment failures in the Laser class possible, a known problem plaguing the Olympic single handed dinghy in recent years.*


It is a technical story that could have influence on the outcomes in both the Laser and Laser Radial class. Although one hopes not, we are back grounding the scene.

At the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships, the largest fleet (in combination) will be the Laser Radial and Laser Standard.

The Lasers are a supplied equipment class requires athletes to lease brand new, identical boats for the Championships. The 275 brand new Lasers for the World Championships was completed by Performance Sailcraft Australasia (PSA) on the Central Coast, north of Sydney in New South Wales.

PSA has been producing Lasers since 1973 and for the last five years a not very secret project has been aiming to deliver a better, more durable Laser sail. (there is no suggestion that Laser sails will fail at Perth 2011- this is about how the class operates or does not, in this case). The final prototypes have been tested for more than 18 months and have passed with flying colours.

It is reported that the World Council unanimously voted for a routine equipment change which could have meant the new sails would be in use at the Perth 2011 event and the upcoming Olympic Games but now this project and an even more important mast top project is very much stalled, a by-product it seems of a bitter battle over intellectual property rights between the original Laser designer Bruce Kirby and his company and one of the Laser manufacturers, which has been transfixing sailors and paralysing the decision making process within the class for the last two years.

The Sail project originator was PSA CEO Chris Caldecoat. ‘The beauty of the Laser is that is a very strict one design class with over 200,000 boats being built. That is why its easily the largest class at Perth 2011. There has been a constant quest for greater durability because that improves affordability, vital to increase the world-wide sailing participation rates.

'Over five years ago we started development work with the aim of producing a more durable Laser sail. There has been a ton of effort. We initiated it and worked closely with Hyde Sails in the UK, with Pryde Sails in Asia and with Australian sail maker Ian MacDiarmid to make sure the overall characteristics were unchanged.

‘It is a heavier weight, more robust Dacron sail with both the normal front luff and a luff pocket.

‘Sailors have asked ‘why did we not go to Mylar?’ From my own 18 footer days and now with the Finn class, we know that Mylar shrinks significantly. With 18 footers we used to do a luff just about every week.

‘Sticking with Dacron, a cost effective cloth, we went through over 20 versions, testing and testing. The final version was tested with the front, middle and the back of fleet and there is agreement that this sail does not render the old sails obsolete. The new one will last longer.’

Laser radial cut sail - dont expect to have soon -  Mike Calin   Click Here to view large photo

US Laser Class President Dr Tracy Usher is of similar opinion. ‘The goal of the Laser sail project was to produce a better quality, more durable sail that didn’t change the game. Hence the idea of being to extend the lifetime of the sail, but make sure that if you had the old sail you could still compete.

'I love that new sail. It is a bi-radial construction Dacron sail and it is a little bit heavier cloth. The goal was to better reorient the stress loads along the cloth, giving it a much better flying shape overall.

‘When you see the sail out sailing, all the distortions that you see in the current Laser sail are gone, there is no flutter in the leech and it looks like a really beautiful sail for the boat.

‘We have had prototypes available now for almost a year and a half. Here in San Francisco I took one of the prototypes and I spent an entire season using it in practice and even in some local regattas, just to see how it shaped up.

‘I stopped logging the hours I had on the sail but I would guess that there are probably 150 plus hours of sailing on it and it still has good shape. The cloth is starting to show signs of a little bit of age and it is starting to get a little stretchier but it still doesn’t have the distortions in it. The leech is still nice and the sail still looks competitive. I think for the average sailor this could be a real boon because the sail has a tremendous life time (in it).

‘Recently some of the New Zealand Laser squad who will be in Perth, including Andrew Murdoch, took the sail out, used it a few times and came back and said that as far as they could see the sail matched very evenly with the current sails. So there wasn’t any advantage or disadvantage to having the sail, but it was obviously a much nicer sail and clearly more durable.

‘This is a routine equipment change so the change goes through the Laser construction manual. Yes it had to be evaluated, it had to be costed and then it had to be voted on by the World Council (it received unanimous approval) and its been awaiting signatures from all of the Laser builders. Unfortunately it seems it will have to wait awhile until the current disagreements are resolved.’

Clay Johnson, the leading US Laser contender going into the 2011 Perth Laser World Championships, reported after a West Coast training camp 'in my opinion the (new) sail is a 'no brainer' for the long-term success of the Laser. The sail is made from 4.5 ounce cloth (an upgrade from the 3.8 ounce cloth that we currently have) and is radial cut. It has a bigger window at the bottom to make vision on the course easier. It's also much more aesthetically pleasing, that is there are no ugly wrinkles between the joint of the top/bottom section and the end of the boom.

'When we did the testing we used two sails - one new and one that had over 150 days of sailing on it! It was incredible to see that the new sail and the old one both looked and performed similarly. Most importantly though, I think the sail was very comparable speed wise to the old one.

When will the new sail be able to be used?

Certainly not in time for Perth 2011, perhaps after the Olympics?

Chris Caldecoat, just back from the International Laser Class World Council Meeting in London last weekend, shook his head. Incredibly it’s clearly going to be 2013!

‘Sailors are getting very frustrated, everyone wants more durable sails. There has been unanimous support at the World Council for this equipment change but for the last two years we have been waiting for Bill Crane from one of the Laser builders, Laser Performance from the USA, to come to the table to discuss. Once Bill signs, Laser Performance, ourselves and the other Laser builders can begin supplying this new sail.

‘At the upcoming ISAF World Championships at Perth 2011 where we (PSA) will be supplying all the Lasers, we will be asking all athletes to sign a petition requesting Laser Performance sit down with us to discuss this new sail (and the new mast top).

‘Right now it’s very clear the new sail will not make an appearance before 2013 and that will be seven years after we started development. The new carbon fibre mast top is similarly held up.'*

In the interests of balance, the author sought Bill Crane's viewpoint. There must be a second side to this story, but in the last two weeks we've not received a response. Hopefully we can provide one when we report on the mast top issue, which will probably dominate Laser boat park frustrations at Perth 2011.*




by Rob Kothe & the Sail-World Team

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=90560

9:12 AM Fri 11 Nov 2011 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships - Perth 2011


Related News Stories:

03 Nov 2013  Lijia Xu ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year 2012 - THAT Speech
22 Oct 2013  Another week of the PSA New Laser and Rig Deal
15 Oct 2013  Great Laser boat and rig deal for the next two weeks
29 Sep 2013  Laser World Championships - Star studded entries confirmed
20 Aug 2013  Mat Belcher – 17 in a row - 'The harder I work, the luckier I get'
10 Aug 2013  Now more news on the foiling Laser
22 Jul 2013  2012 Olympic Games - Stevie Morrison one year on
22 Jul 2013  2012 Olympic Games - Lucy Macgregor one year on
03 Jun 2013  Ainslie: Close to quitting sailing after Andrew 'Bart' Simpson's death
31 May 2013  A Tribute to Bart
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World

Audi Melges 20 North American Championship - Tortoises, and the hare by International Audi Melges 20 Class Association
Racking up wins across North America including the U.S. Nationals, Canadian National Championship and most recently the Pacific Coast Championship, Gomes Neto has remained unfazed and is heading into their biggest challenge yet with a stacked fleet this coming weekend on San Francisco Bay. ... [more]  

It’s been two long years of waiting but the Volvo Ocean Race returns to action in the opening Alicante in-port race on Saturday with anticipation rising thanks to a new one-design boat which promises the closest competition in the event's 41-year history. ... [more]  

Team Vestas Wind's On Board Reporter, Brian Carlin, compiled an interesting gallery of images during the crew's delivery voyage and race qualifier. These are not the usual shots we have come to expect from the Volvo Ocean Race but rather some very clever and outstanding camera work. ... [more]  

It’s back to work for Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, at the Extreme Sailing Series, Nice. After taking a week off after their win at the 49er world championships in Spain and now they’re at Nice, France, for another hectic few days at the Extreme Sailing Series. ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - On-line entry will open on November 10, 2014 mocr.ussailing.org/!here!new. The deadline for priority entries with regards to quotas is December 5, 2014. Entries must be received no later than January 5, 2015 to qualify for early entry. ... [more]  

Having won the first race of the 2014 Melges Worlds in Lake Garda and finishing in high in the overall standings, Liam, with team Wildman, Stephanie Roble on strategy, Erik Shampain on trim, Steve Hunt on main and tactics, turns his focus to the 2014 Melges 20 North Americans running this week on San Francisco Bay and the 2015 Audi Melges 20 Worlds coming to SF Bay next year. ... [more]  

With light winds continuing to dominate on day six of the Davidoff Cool Water Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam, the decision was made to begin the Reno SUP Challenge during the afternoon, which saw twelve teams battling it out in heats of two for a place in tomorrow’s final, to keep the crowds entertained. ... [more]  

Three America's Cup sailors have been named in the top 20 sports earners, in a list published in the New Zealand Herald this week. Topping the list is Sir Russell Coutts with a claimed earnings of $13million. He is just a $1million ahead of an English Premier League player, Winston Reid, and motor racing ace, Scott Dixon. All Black captain, Ritchie McCaw is ranked #5. ... [more]  

Photographer Carlo Borlenghi was on deck for day three of Les Voiles de Saint Tropez to capture these stunning images of the action. ... [more]  

Melges 32 World Championship - Prepare for off-the-charts action by International Melges 32 Class Association
Entering its sixth World Championship season, the International Melges 32 Class Association has raced at arguably every world-class venue on the globe, has seen the most respected pro and amateur sailors on its courses and most importantly, learned valuable lessons of what owners and sailors want so that the Melges 32 continues to be strongest one design grand prix sportboat on the planet. ... [more]  

The IFDS Rankings for Paralympic Classes have been released. It's a British 1-2 at the top of the 2.4mR Rankings with Megan Pascoe at world number one and Helena Lucas at world number two. 2014 World Champion Heiko Kroger (GER) sits at world number seven but counts less regattas than those above him. ... [more]  

The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) and Rolex are happy to reveal the Nominees for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2014. ISAF received nominations for the 2014 Awards from across the world for sailors representing all aspects of the sport. ... [more]  

Like the name implies, the goal of the boater-funded BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water is to educate boaters about safe and clean boating. The Foundation is looking to fund Grassroots Grant projects that utilize new, innovative approaches that encourage safe and clean boating among the boating public. ... [more]  

The 35th edition of the Rolex Middle Sea Race is fast approaching and appears likely to rewrite the record books. Entries are shortly due to close and the Royal Malta Yacht Club is already bracing itself for the biggest fleet to grace its island home since the Great Siege of 1565. The Ottoman Armada of 450 years ago was recorded to be 193 in strength. ... [more]  

The Notice of Race for ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, scheduled for 25-31 January 2015, has been released. On-line entry will open on 10 November 2014. The deadline for priority entries with regards to quotas is 5 December 2014. Entries must be received no later than 5 January 2015 to qualify for early entry. ... [more]  

A stellar list of just under 100 broadcasters has been lined up to showcase the world’s toughest ocean challenge, the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, to a new global audience of fans. The 12th edition has offered channels a line-up of a new 39-part weekly half-hour show plus special short bespoke features. ... [more]  

Photographer Eugenia Bakunova of leading Russian website www.mainsail.ru was on the water at Les Voiles de Saint Tropez on the French Riveria , and provided this gallery of images of the classics and other yachts racing on Day 2 ... [more]  

New Ragamuffin 100 emerges from the hull build in Nowra *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Ragamuffin 100, which started out as a modified Elliott design, Maximus, is another supermaxi undergoing a major rebuild or retrofit. Across the Tasman, the new Ragamuffin 100 will be virtually a new boat with a a new hull design by Andy Dovell / Syd Fischer / David Witt. The hull mould and shell was built by Innovation Composites at the Nowra facility. ... [more]  

Southern Spars ships the world's tallest masts by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
Leading world sparmaker, Southern Spars, has shipped two spars for a new 85 metre ketch. The superyacht will carry two 93metre masts which will be the world’s tallest rigs on one gigantic yacht. ... [more]  

Professional sailing photographers from all over the world are invited to join the Mirabaud Yacht Racing Image award 2014. Started in 2009, the Mirabaud Yacht Racing Image is the world’s premier photography competition dedicated to the sport of sailing. The prestigious trophy will be awarded during the World Yacht Racing Forum in Barcelona, on December 11, 2014. ... [more]  

David Kellett (AUS) is to be awarded the ISAF Beppe Croce Trophy which honours an individual for their outstanding voluntary contribution to the sport of sailing. The ISAF Beppe Croce Trophy, first presented in 1988 in memory of Beppe Croce, the ISAF President from 1969 to 1986, will be presented to Kellett at the 2014 ISAF Annual Conference in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. ... [more]  

After being graced with plenty of late summer sunshine during the opening days of the event, more autumnal weather moved in on the fifth day of the Davidoff Cool Water Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam with grey skies and infrequent showers. Unfortunately though the light winds continued as the sailors endured another lay day. ... [more]  

In a move that is expected to benefit recreational boaters, on Oct. 22 the US Coast Guard will drop the current life jacket type code scheme -- Type I, II, III, IV and V -- that has been used for years to label and differentiate the types of life jackets and their specific use. ... [more]  

Kate Nota and her team onboard the J/111 Odyssey won the Ripple Effect Short Video Contest, which was part of the Ida Lewis Distance Race this summer (August 15). ... [more]  

The largest Laser World Championship in history will be taking place on the south coast of France when 515 sailors, representing 36 different countries, begin racing on October 5 to open the 2014 Audi Laser Masters’ World Championships. The Laser remains one of the best and most popular boats worldwide in which to enjoy the sport of sailing. ... [more]  

Carlo Borlenghi was back on the water for day two at Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez to capture these images. ... [more]  

It has been an interesting journey so far for the Chinese team in the Volvo Ocean Race, Dongfeng Race Team. Approximately 10 months ago this team set out on a mission to select and train Chinese recruits in the hope that they would be ‘race ready’ for the start of leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race fans can now carry the world’s toughest ocean race in their pocket, thanks to the launch of a new official mobile app. Developed for both iOS and Android systems, the app is available for download from the App Store and Google Play now – and boasts a host of exciting features which will allow users to be closer to the on-water adventure than ever before. ... [more]  

Race teams planning next season’s calendar could do worse than sign up for the Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series 2015 which runs from 16-24 January. This event, which kick starts the Caribbean race season, was re-launched in 2014 with a new race format and plenty of record-breaking opportunities. It proved such a success that an even bigger entry is expected in 2015. ... [more]  

Photographer Eugenia Bakunova of leading Russian website www.mainsail.ru was on the water at Les Voiles de Saint Tropez on the French Riveria , and provided this gallery of images of the classics and other yachts racing ... [more]  

Sunset+Vine|APP, the Oxford-based unit of the multi-award winning UK independent TV sports production and media company Sunset+Vine, has helped ISAF smash all previous broadcaster records for the recent Santander 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships. ... [more]  

2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup - Melbourne - Don’t forget to enter the ISAF Sailing World Cup – Melbourne. There are only two days left to take advantage of the discounted entry price offer. ... [more]  

2014 12 Metre North American Championships - Two days of a northerly (first strong, then light) and one day of a building southwesterly put six 12 Metre yachts to the test at their North American Championships, which were held off Newport, R.I. over September 26-28. Gunther Buerman’s (Newport, R.I.) KZ-3 and Dennis Williams’ (Hobe Sound, Fla.) Victory ’83 defended their titles ... [more]  

Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam - Waiting game continues on day 4
Platu 25 World Championship - Euz II Monella Vagabonda wins again
Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez - Day 1 images by Carlo Borlenghi
Les Voiles de Saint Tropez - Day 1 action shots by Ingrid Abery
U.S. Team Racing Championship - Ladies and Gentlemen victorious +Video
National Sailing Hall of Fame inducts eight
2016 ISAF Youth Match Racing Worlds - Bid guidelines now published
Volvo Ocean Race: Last medical training for the onboard sailors +Video
2014 Melges 20 Pacific Coast Championship - Images by Erik Simonson
J/105 North American Champs- Rod Wilmer and Terry McLaughlin succeeds
Extreme Sailing Series: Burling and Tuke back on board for Nice Act
2014 Buddy Melges Challenge - Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen wins US event
America's Cup: Oracle Team USA's AC72 takes to the streets
Alpari World Match Racing Tour - Canfield wins first Dutch Match Cup
Pantaenius and Camper & Nicholsons Marinas become strategic partners
Kite Foil Gold Cup Australia 2014 – Day two video
Bart's Bash: Update and Video - Information overload!
2014 U.S. Team Racing Championship - Day 2
2014 Buddy Melges Challenge - USA leads Denmark in Sheboygan final
2014 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship - Benz Faget wins third mallory
J/105 North American Champ - Wilmer/McLaughlin team maintain advantage   
Images from Cannes: Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai   
Régates Royales – Trophée Panerai: Cannes at its best   
Dutch Match Cup - Gilmour keeps clean sheet in Lelystad   
Dutch Match Cup - GAC Pindar through to fifth consecutive semi-final   
Hobie 16 Open North Americans and 2015 Pan Am Games qualifier overall   
Volvo Ocean Race - Frostad on Boat Design and final changes (Part II) *Feature   
Volvo Ocean Race 10 days to go – Frostad on cultural change (Part I) *Feature   
2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race on NBC Sports Network in the U.S.   
2014 J/24 World Championship - Will Welles’ Cougar clinches   
2014 Buddy Melges Challenge - Meldgaard and Le Berre ready for semis   
2014 U.S. Adult Sailing Championship - Day 3   
2014 U.S. Team Racing Championship - Day 1 + Video   
America's Cup: Then and now - Coutts on why Oracle won, and the Venue   
Byte CII World Sailing Championship comes to Royal Varuna, Thailand   
Dutch Match Cup: Canfield wins Qualifying, six set for Quarters battle   
12 Metre North Americans - A blast from the America’s Cup past   
2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup qualification system published   
Volvo Ocean Race: Mapfre named as Spanish team sponsor + Video   
Extreme Sailing Series returns to Nice for the penultimate Act of 2014   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT