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North Sails 2021 Innovation - LEADERBOARD

Global Solo Challenge - sail configurations in following winds

by Global Solo Challenge 19 Jun 2021 05:40 PDT
Global Solo Challenge - sail configurations in following winds © Global Solo Challenge

Sail configuration changes with the angle and intensity of the wind. In this article we will consider following winds with true wind angles between approximately 145 and 160 degrees.

You can't sail dead downwind except using old techniques such as poled out jibs. On modern boats with asymmetrical spinnakers it is rare to go beyond 155-158 degrees true wind angle.

This compilation of videos looks at sail configuration with increasing wind intensity. For each video, sails used and the intensity of the wind are indicated. As you can see, not all configurations are coherent with one another with respect to the intensity of the wind. This is because our sail configuration may also depend on the sea conditions and the stability of the air and the angle to the true wind, sometimes having to sail just a few degrees higher forces us to a sail reduction.

With very gusty wind or rough sea we will have a more conservative configuration. When sea and wind are aligned or we are sailing in the warm sector of a depression we can afford a more aggressive configuration. In conclusion the sail configuration for a given true wind angle and true wind intensity may vary significantly depending on other factors. All videos were filmed during the 2011/2012 Global Ocean Race on an Akilaria RC1 Class40.

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