The Equipment Evaluations for the 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition is taking place in Santander, Spain from 17-25 March. Sailors, manufacturer boats, skiffs, multihulls and kiteboarders took to the water outside the channel for the second day running.
2016 Equipment Trials Day 6:
Racing took place in both the skiff and multihulls allowing sailors a chance to push themselves and their boats further than they had done so over the previous days of trials.
The day gave the ISAF Evaluation Panel an opportunity to see the boats in trickier conditions and lots would have been learnt by not only the panel, but observers, sailors, media and manufacturers.
At the close of the day the Viper Team presented their case in front of the panel. All of the manufacturers have explained why they think their boat should be selected for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition and the presentations and question and answer session has allowed the panel to get down to some finer details.
Just two days of trials remain for the skiff and multihulls so hopefully we will see some more action in Santander Bay before reports and decisions are made.
The kiteboarders had a productive day on the water with new courses trialled. Having a mix kites, multihulls and skiffs within Santander Bay today was a pleasure to watch and we will try and get some kiteboarding footage up in due course.
With the sunshine and warm temperatures the wind arrived as well at the second day of the ISAF kiteboarding format trials in Santander, Spain. After the morning briefing, the whole kiteboarding fleet headed over to Playa Sardinero the prepare their equipment and to be ready as soon as the wind kicks in.
Unfortunately it took until 13:00 before the wind stabilized in direction and strength to allow a course to be set. The race committee announced to firstly go for two standard windward/leeward course races to have a baseline before testing all the new course options on the agenda.
Both races went underway in light conditions between six and nine knots on a two lap course with a leeward gate to give everybody an idea of today's kiteboard course racing abilities. Then the race committee quickly changed the course to a standard downwind slalom with a reaching start – in the meantime the sailors headed out to the race courses of the multihull and skiff evaluations to race these nice new boats. Coaches and spectators were impressed on the board speeds and upwind angles of the kiteboard sailors.
A full round of Slalom went underway then with the reaching starts proving to be tricky, but a lot of action on the gybing marks and also some crashes and tangles.
In the later afternoon the whole fleet and the ISAF staff headed back to the CEAR sailing center then to get feedback from the sailors on the formats tested today and different options that could be taken into consideration.
Tomorrow will see the evaluation of the two new racing formats short track and enduro in different configurations. After the feedback from the sailors the evaluation panel will then look into further testing of the most successful formats.
In general we receive overwhelming interest here, not only on the land were some of our sailors showcased their equipment in the morning to the multihull and skiff sailors as well as coaches and MNA reps, but also on the water were the kiteboarding races draw a lot of interest from the supporting boats for the multihull and skiff evaluations.
Racing continues tomorrow with a good forecast for the whole day which should allow to finish the first step of the trials and then investigate further racing and scoring options.
The ISAF kiteboarding format trials will end on Sunday March 25, and the ISAF evaluation panel will then prepare a report to the ISAF midyear conference in Stresa, Italy.