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

 

Sail-World.com : Sailrocket 2 - 30 knots and a bottle of champagne

Sailrocket 2 - 30 knots and a bottle of champagne

'Vestas Sailrocket 2'    Sailrocket

Paul Larsen and the Vestas Sailrocket 2 (VSR2) crew are in Walvis Bay, Namibia chasing the Outright World Sailing Speed record.

Vestas Sailrocket 2 was unveiled in March on the Isle of Wight and then packed and shipped to Namibia. Since then she has undergone a series of trial runs.

Paul Larsen says Vestas Sailrocket 2 is simply dropping into her element.


It was quite a promising day today as Vestas Sailrocket 2 thrust the team effortlessly into the fridge for the 30 knot bottle of Pol Roger champagne.

Nice. I'm not going to even try and dramatise it as it felt so cruisy and natural.

VSR2 is simply dropping into her element and she feels right. I have no doubt that we will just as easily knock the next bottle over. Damn she felt rock solid. Like a grunty car slipping into top gear at 50 mph... you know a whole world of speed... I just said I wasn't going to do that. It was cool though.

We woke up this morning to a text from very good friends Martin and Henda who are living on their yacht out on a mooring in the Bay. They told us that the SW wind was already blowing and to expect wind this afternoon.

It is extremely unusual to get a SW wind first thing in the morning but nonetheless we hit the Yacht club expecting to sail. The wind didn't abate so I pushed the guys(and girl) to get their jobs done and focus on getting wet.

The afternoon high tides have left us and we now have to go out around all the sand bars at low tide. The water is having some sulphur 'bloom' thing going on so it is milky aqua, very cold, starved of oxygen and smells of rotten eggs. The fish can't breath underwater so the birds have a field day grabbing them all on the surface. It's a Walvis thing.

By the time we got over to 'speed-spot' it was gusting to 25 knots and by the time we got the wing up it was hitting near 28. I decided to hold and the wing came down. Whilst VSR2 should be able to sail in these conditions, so much is getting added on and modified between these early sessions that it is simply too soon to push. The cockpit has been changed immensely and all the Cosworth data loggers and their associated looms are now crammed in there.

I have to get familiar with it all and comfortable enough to know the sequences when things get heated. Today was supposed to be a day to ease me into this new cockpit... not throw me to the speed sailing lions.

Vestas Sailrocket 2 -  Sailrocket?nid=83857  
So we stood down and waited. I'm getting a good feel for this place now. I refer to local knowledge but don't assume it's always right.

We got it pretty much spot on today as we hit the course a couple of hours later and at pretty much the ideal time. The wind was 17-20 knots.

I went through the ropes on the tow up the course and felt semi-confident I could get them all right. The new systems did their jobs and we sailed over the 'hump' quite easily once again.

I was now sitting down in the forward facing and angled cockpit and quickly became aware how weird it was not to be able to see the boat and sails ahead of you.

It was great to have the Cosworth instruments in the cockpit to reference the wing and rudder angles. I sheeted in from the start up settings and VSR2 just shot forward. She was no longer mushing but was now riding hard and firm on the surface.

You can see that the top wing section wasn't sheeting in properly and was in fact fully eased. In fact there are a number of details that will make the wing significantly more powerful... but once again, pure speed was not the objective of the day. Preparing for pure speed was. The steering response was fantastic, all the controls worked... but some need to be tidied up.

The ride was clean, spray free... almost majestic compared to our first boat. I used to get hammered by spray at 30 knots but not in this boat. I knew we were over 30 knots and finished the run early as it was low tide and the shallows at the end of the course beckoned.

Vestas Sailrocket 2 -  Sailrocket?nid=83857  
We tried another run before sunset hoping to bag the 40 knot bottle but a detail slipped through the net and we weren't able to go for speed. By this time it was dark and we were happy to head home.

So it was all good. The work we had done in the week between sails had all shown its worth and the week ahead lies openly beckoning us to give it a good 'nudge'.

I think tomorrow is going to also be windy so let's see what we can come up with.

I'm now tempted to jump straight to the 'funky' foil to see if it too can jump through the hoops. It is the foil for which Vestas Sailrocket 2 is built so why not get it out now?

Looking at all these photos of VSR2 sliding along now... well it's just plain cool. It's working. It's coming to life. It is a ship at heart and it is going to take us to amazing places. I love having it in my life and this is exactly where I want to be.

The team are doing a great job. We are all witnessing our efforts bear fruit. Things happen fast in small, dynamic teams. You think of things in a bar and build it tomorrow. That afternoon it's being tested. The skills in this particular team are very diverse. It's a pleasure to watch them rip into it.

Sun, 22 May 11 12:21

Hi all. Not much to report from the sailing side as we haven't had any decent weather to get out since the first run over the 'hump' nearly a week ago.

The weather is described locally as 'East' weather meaning that it is likely that the East winds will blow down out of the high desert plateau's inland and cance out the normal South West winds. There is a battle going on between the two winds and quite often Walvis Bay is in the middle. The upside is that the days are hot and gorgeous. The downside is that what makes them so gorgeous is the lack of wind. It's braii weather.

Nonetheless we work on the boat every day to get it as ready as can be for the one or two good days that may fall into our lap. We only really have 8 possible sailing days left after which we have to pack up. If one of these days is a good one then we have to be ready to get out there and tick as many boxes as we can.

I want to see Vestas Sailrocket 2 do reliable start ups and get easily into the 40 + speed range using the conventional foil. We should be able to see how stable she is as she gets faster, get a feeling for the steering and see how well all the systems work. If we are happy then we will do a quick pit-stop and switch in the high speed foil section for the main foil. Whilst we have made it over the low-speed hump, the next 'hump' will involve the performance of the high speed foil and how well it performs in the low to middle speed ranges. It will be fascinating to see how much wind that needs to really get tracking. If we can get that over 40 knots in winds around 22 knots... well, that will be the day I know we will have cracked it.

I have no true idea of how hard,easy or realistic this will be. We have our theory and list of options to assist us... but some of those are costly on many fronts i.e. whole new main foils and we want to be pretty sure of ourselves before we start ordering new ones. They aren't lollipop sticks. If we head back to Europe now not really knowing if the foils are any good then it adds another element of risk to our return session later in the year. We desperately want to get VSR2 up to its record setting potential this year so we want to be chasing high speeds asap.

Time is running out now and we need some weather related luck to fall into our ever optimistic laps.

Half the team are working full-time through the complex Cosworth wiring system. So far we have the basics of Wing and rudder angles working but the strain guage logging system is proving to be.... errr... stubborn. Fortunately Jonny and Helena have a lot more patience than me with boat electronics so I have left them with it. It's all a bit of an uncertain mess now but once they have it sorted then it should get tidier.

The cockpit is starting to look very business like. We have the two Cosworth displays sitting to my left just inside the rim of the cockpit. The small diameter, quick release steering wheel has a multi function PTT (push to talk) button on it which activates a really cool comms system which we are helping Motocomp develop. Basically it gives an absolute first rate wireless, noise cancellation system based on the Interphone F4 units used on motorbikes (which gives very clear voice transmissions even in open face helmets up to high speeds and is pretty much waterproof). The units allow a full two way conversation between the crew which is clear as a bell... and for the pilot to link wirelessly with a VHF radio to transmit off the boat. The fact is that you are often in a windy environment when using marine VHF's and most noise/wind cancellation systems are crap, let alone wireless. This system works brilliantly and is crystal clear. We are just getting started with this. The fact is that this project is a great place to test these electronic products. If they can not only survive but excel in our environment... then I will happily recommend them to anyone. I look forward to having great comms on and off the boat at last.

Outside now, I can hear the small Dremel grinder gnawing away at carbon as Ben fits the front seat. All the control lines are now run forward into organisers either side of the steering wheel. It does look a bit weird. It looks like a racing car cockpit and yet it has all these ropes hanging out of it. Yacht, plane, race car.... what's not for a guy to like about this toy?

So tomorrow is forecast to be better, as is Tuesday. Fingers crossed the good winds from the south west will triumph over the evil winds from the East;)

We're ready.

Cheers, Paul.

Vestas Sailrocket 2 -  Sailrocket?nid=83857  

Sailrocket website




by Paul Larsen

  

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

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=83857

10:34 PM Mon 23 May 2011 GMT






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


News - USA and the World

Today, Ben Ainslie Racing (BAR) took to the water for the first time from their temporary base in Southampton, sailing their foiling AC45. The boat originally raced under BAR colours during the America’s Cup World Series in 2012-13, and has subsequently been modified to fly on hydrofoils. ... [more]  

As of the 2140UTC report on Day 10 of the first Leg of the Volvo Ocean Race, the placings on the water on the water had not changed during the day, but the distances between the boats had reduced. The two easternmost boats, Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing continued to lead but is only 4nm ahead of Team Brunel with about 600nm to sail to the turning mark of Fernando de Noronha 220nm off the coast of Brazil. ... [more]  

The calm weather returned on day five of the La Torche PWA Grand Slam as the wave sailors recovered from yesterday’s punishing, but brilliant, conditions. After a chilly start, with the thermometer reading just five degrees celsius, the temperature soon rose with the appearance of the sun, making for another stunning autumn day. ... [more]  

Day five of the Rolex Middle Sea Race has proved a day of reckoning for the competing fleet. The forecast strong northwesterly wind has arrived and consistently blown over 25 knots with gusts exceeding 40 knots. The effect has been to catapult the previously slow moving yachts towards the finish line in Malta. ... [more]  

A day and a night of uncertainty - later, the Doldrums will come to an end for the Volvo Ocean Race teams. By tomorrow morning, the fleet should be sailing safely in the southeasterly trade winds. So – who won this equatorial lottery? What was the best place to cross this convergence zone, where two hemispheres and two weather systems collide? ... [more]  

Known for erratic light airs alternating with sudden gusts that can last a minute or an hour from the giant unstable vertical clouds, the Doldrums (aka more officially the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone) are the unavoidable low-point of leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race for the determined men on Dongfeng. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. Onboard Team Alvimedica. The synopsis is pretty straightforward: we are stuck in the Doldrums. Stuck, and stuck real good. All things considered, yesterday was actually pretty decent. We had a quick morning rainsquall that was able to power us south through the first line of ITCZ clouds already towering above our heads by 10AM. ... [more]  

Rolex Middle Sea Race - Artie gunning for glory by Media Royal Malta Yacht Club
Lee Satariano's Maltese J/122, Artie has emerged as the hot favourite to become the overall winner of the 2014 Rolex Middle Sea Race. However, at 16:00 CET, Artie was still 80 miles from the finish and the Mistral storm is still raging. In addition, there are several yachts behind Artie that could still claim the overall prize. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Onboard Team SCA. Today I would like to share another perspective with you. Given the kind messages from Team SCA followers that we have been receiving onboard (thank you!), it would seem daily reports from our onboard reporter Miss Halloran and our onshore media crew have been doing a wonderful job of sharing our journey thus far. ... [more]  

The 17th edition of the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship took place from 15-18 October in San Francisco, USA. Hosted by the St. Francis Yacht Club, the 2014 Rolex Farr 40 Worlds welcomed 19 international entrants - comprising teams from Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Turkey and the United States. ... [more]  

After two days of intense racing at the 2014 RS:X Youth Worlds in Clearwater, both fleets have completed a full schedule of six light-wind races, and they’ve earned their lay day! Very light and shifty winds were forecast for the day, and it was a nice surprise to see a seven knot side-off breeze fill in early from the North. ... [more]  

Rolex Middle Sea Race - Big breeze and lumpy seas by Media Royal Malta Yacht Club
There are 92 yachts still racing in the Rolex Middle Sea Race. The expected frontal system arrived around Midnight last night at the northwest corner of the course. Reports of storm force winds and big seas have been received by the Race Committee and 25 yachts had officially retired from the race by 15:00 CET on Wednesday 22 October. ... [more]  

Justin 'Judd' Goldman was 17 years old when he suffered a disabling bone disease. After realizing that there were few sports that he could participate in he discovered sailing. Over the next 58 years he competed successfully in many races throughout the world. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Blogs from the Boats - Leg 1, Day 10 plus Videos *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.nz/com
Several of the On Board Reporters aboard, provide their unique views of Leg 1, Day 10 of the Volvo Ocean Race - in text, images and video: You know when you try to stick two positive magnets together and regardless as to how close you get them they never touch? Well, the ITCZ is a bit like that. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 1 turns inside out in Doldums *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
As reported earlier Leg 1 of the Volvo Ocean Race would seem to have gone from being a tightly fought contest to being a procession to Cape Town. Even though only 40% of the course has been sailed, the distance between the boats are significant (other than the two lead boats) and look set to increase. ... [more]  

Student Yachting World Cup - After those days of sun and light air, the weather was upside-down with a cloudy sky threatening us of heavy shower at any time and a strong wind fluctuating from 15 knots to 25 knots! Two windward-leeward races took place today as the wind became far too heavy in the early afternoon. The 13th race began this morning: a second start occurred under black flag. ... [more]  

2014 Argo Group Gold Cup - Over the last few days there have been frantic phone calls between travel agents from competitors at the Argo Group Gold Cup, the sixth stage and the oldest event on the Alpari World Match Racing Tour. Over Friday night and into Saturday the Category Three Hurricane Gonzalo passed directly over Bermuda pummelling it with 100+ knot winds. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Big gains for two boats in Doldrums *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Two boats have made big gains in the Doldrums, with the western-most competitors apparently not stopping and sailing though the convergence zone between northern and southern hemispheres, without dropping below 8kts. Team Brunel and Abh Dhabi Ocean Racing have both made big gains on the rest of the fleet - and the two easternmost boats - Team Vestas Wind and Mapfre, in particular. ... [more]  

In spite of Hurricane Gonzalo's thrashing of the Onion Patch last week, the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and the people of Bermuda are ready to host the 2014 Argo Group Gold Cup, Stage 6 of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour (AWMRT). All 20 teams have arrived safely from their corners of the world and will practice for a day and race on Wednesday. ... [more]  

While the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup always offers opportunities for young people to have new experiences, coping with Hurricane Gonzalo offered the 14 competitors traveling from overseas to Bermuda a hurdle that strengthened their respect for this island nation. Many of the 14 competitors spent layover time in either hotels or airports and some are now guests in homes without electricity. ... [more]  

Dynamic Stability Systems welcomes last week’s decision by IMOCA to place no further restrictions on its class rule. This permits both the six new IMOCA 60s currently under construction, as well as the existing fleet, to be fitted with the lateral lifting foils which DSS has spent the last decade pioneering. ... [more]  

Groupe Beneteau today announced its sponsorship of the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider and ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami. Groupe Beneteau is the world's leading yacht builder, and will now become a significant presence in high-performance sailing with its support of both the US national sailing team and North America's premier Olympic and Paralympic classes regatta. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15. It’s the place where the northern and southern winds meet, where a sailing race can be won or lost in an instant. And with its complex and confusing conditions, lack of breeze, and stifling heat – it’s also a place that most sailors can’t wait to see the back of. But there is one good thing about the Doldrums. ... [more]  

The Atlantic has proved to be a test for the VO65s in the Volvo Ocean Race and their teams as a battle of gybing down the west coast of Africa broke out, keeping all boats in a relatively tight-knit pack for much longer than expected. Having passed Morocco and the Canaries, we were drawn to the tricky-to-handle magnet of Cape Verde. ... [more]  

It’s the dawn of a complicated day in the Volvo Ocean Race. Let’s face it: we’re not having a very good time on Dongfeng. We lost distance last night, and our leading position. The day got dull afterwards. Sailing straight ahead, with the spinnaker up, in light winds. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15, Day 10 onboard Team SCA. Two days, eight hours, thirty-four minutes, and ten seconds, nine seconds, eight, seven, six, five… over the last few days the clock has gotten louder and louder as it counts down to October 23rd at noon—the time when we cross the equator and the time when myself and six other sailors join the rest of our crew in King Neptune’s court. ... [more]  

For Pablo Arrarte Elorza, the Volvo Ocean Race is a tough challenge. Not as far as physical effort is concerned because this likeable Spaniard is a very strong guy. For Pablo, the race is mostly a culinary war of attrition because the food that the team has bought with it on the race does little to please his gourmet palate. ... [more]  

The 2014 RS:X Youth Worlds kicked off on October 20th in Clearwater, USA, and it was hard work from the start: in 5-6 kt of breeze, offshore to start the day and side-on to close it, pumping was in order for the 54 boys and 28 girls gathered here for the 2014 RS:X Youth World Windsurfing Championships. ... [more]  

The team at The St. Maarten Heineken Regatta are very happy to announce that entries are now open for the 2015 Regatta, taking place March 5 - 8. The team hopes to see lots of return entries as well as new ones this year, all coming to celebrate the event's 35th year. In order to celebrate this milestone year, there will be some new features this coming season. ... [more]  

After three complete days at sea only three boats competing in the 2014 Rolex Middle Sea Race have passed the northwest tip of Sicily, roughly the halfway point of the race. The prevailing wind remains weak, but is expected to strengthen this afternoon coinciding with the arrival of bulk of the fleet t the Egadi Islands. ... [more]  

Last week the Volvo Ocean Race was all about VMG downwind sailing, with Dongfeng being the star performer. After DFRT took the lead, they shortly lost it again 36 hours later after hitting something in the water and losing their rudder. Two hours later they were up and running again with the spare in. Impressive stuff. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Blogs from the Boats - Leg 1, Day 9 plus Videos *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.nz/com
Several of the On Board Reporters aboard, provide their unique views of Leg 1, Day 9 of the Volvo Ocean Race - in text, images and video. ... [more]  

Rolex Middle Sea Race 2014 - Fight to the finish by Media Royal Malta Yacht Club
Igor Simicic's maxi, Esimit Europa 2 is expected to finish the Rolex Middle Sea Race in the early hours of tomorrow morning. However the 100ft carbon fibre canting keel Maxi is under serious pressure to secure their fourth Line Honours victory in the race. ... [more]  

Student Yachting World Cup - Fourth race day + Video
New improved swell forecasting and more locations from PredictWind
Volvo Ocean Race: Day 9 final report - Lead continually changing
Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup - An opportunity for growth
Volvo Ocean Race: Fleet charges the door of the Doldrums Casino *Feature
La Torche PWA Grand Slam - Light winds on day 3
Volvo Ocean Race: Navigators throw away the routing textbook
Volvo Ocean Race - The Doldrums, a navigational nightmare + Video
Rolex Middle Sea Race - Maltese yachts top the leader board
Star Sailors League Finals - Torben Grael and Jorge Zarif join fleet
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Alvimedica heads for the Doldrums
Volvo Ocean Race - Team SCA, a crew on a mission
Thailand bids for 2016 IODA ‘Optimist’ World Championships
Farr 40 Worlds: Prizegiving images from the Final day in San Francisco
Bill Green - builder and sailor passes on
ISAF World Sailing Rankings – 20 October 2014
Farr 40 Worlds: Images from the Final day in San Francisco *Feature
Farr 40 Worlds: Images from Day 2 in San Francisco *Feature
Rolex Middle Sea Race 2014 - A hard day's night
34th Student Yachting World Cup 2014 - Second race day
Volvo Ocean Race: Dongfeng loses lead, anyone's race ahead of Doldrums *Feature   
Flying Dreams 'An Ocean Story': The Movie   
New super maxis gear up for Rolex Sydney Hobart   
Volvo Ocean Race: Blogs from the Boats - Leg 1, Day 8 plus Videos *Feature   
Linda Elias Memorial Women’s One Design Challenge - Youngerman wins   
2014 Off Valparaíso Race - Santander team victorious   
La Torche PWA Grand Slam - Waves continue to pound on day 2   
Volvo Ocean Race: Dongfeng consolidates lead on Day 8 *Feature   
RS:X Youth World Championships - All set for Clearwater action   
Rolex Middle Sea Race 2014 - Slow road north   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 – Dongfeng Race Team - A risky call   
Rolex Middle Sea Race 2014 - Escaping the shroud of Mount Etna   
Farr 40 Worlds: Day 4 Image and Video gallery *Feature   
Australian 18 Footers League’s Major A. Frizelle Trophy   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 - Leader gambles on Island windshadow   
2014 Sailing World Cup Qingdao - Final day video highlights   
2014 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship - Plenty of time   
Coast Guard rescues two near Wachapreague   
2014 Off Valparaíso Race - Day 2   
La Torche PWA Grand Slam - Massive swell on day 1   


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