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The Pastiche

by John Curnow, Editor, Sail-World AUS 15 Aug 2021 15:00 PDT
Hull form revealed of the new Scarlet Runner © Composites Constructions

Given the assortment on offer, I was originally going with potpourri. However, I've done that, along with goulash, mélange, juxtaposition, and quite a few others. About the only one I could be not sure of was pastiche, which is one of Kevin McCloud's favourite words as it turns out. So here we are with a collection of thoughts that might also be referred to as miscellaneous ramblings.

Even just collecting the images was fun, and in another world, I would have just settled for a photo essay. However, it was the unconscious, quite subliminal way in which I titled the folder for the first images you see as 'SR13' that had me chuckling. After all, it was not too much of a stretch to get to SR-71, which was Lockheed's infamous Blackbird.

Alas, the new Scarlet Runner is all set to be a speed demon, as well. She's also going to be tres chic black, everywhere, and apparently it may well be the matt style that Blackbird made all her own. We took a solid look at SR13 in Fashionably Black, and as you can see, work progresses despite the multitudinous issues thrown up by border issues and a wee Delta.

There are still lots of jobs for the craftsmen at Composites Constructions to get into. Still, for a few lucky souls, a glimpse of the real deal has occurred when her massive bowsprit was temporarily installed, as too her stanchions, which will certainly add to the look of her brave-souls-only-for'ard-of-the-stick layout from the team at Carkeek Design Partners.

At any rate, if it was unclear before, you now get to definitively see just how much of her freeboard has been made up by the deck mould that has now been bonded to the hull, which sits snugly in her mould, all level and square. As soon as her remaining bits arrive, she'll start to look even more like the Mach3.3 weapon she is. OK. Perhaps not 3,000 feet per second, so I will now tone down the talk it up cup... maybe...

Well looky here

Another new boat that really caught my eye (and that too of our Managing Editor, Mark Jardine) was the new 11th Hour Racing IMOCA that appeared out of the CDK Technologies shed. The chines are something else, and if I had not known she is a yacht, you might have even thought they were making an attempt to bring back monohulls into offshore powerboat racing. Add a couple of steps about 70% of the way back and it is not as much of a stretch as you might think. Squint now and you'll see what I mean with the picture below.

At any rate they will be delighted if they can achieve a third of speed of one of those...

In all seriousness, they have a massive mission to remind us all of, and don't forget that your nominations for the sustainability award have to be in by September 10. Check out the big question to get the whole picture.

Big fleet - Bigger Race

Entry slots were snapped up faster than tickets to a pop star's latest gig. They came in the form of behemoths all the way down to 30-somethings. One, two, three hulls not a problem. Two or more souls aboard each, and in some cases, much more! Quite possibly, only the Fastnet can achieve so many talking points.

This Kurt Arrigo image of an S&S 63 had me write this...

A shot from the start of the 2021 Fastnet leaves you with the pursed lips, and the words, 'That's a bit unpleasant!' As soon as you've expressed that thought out loud you go more to a teeth exposed grimace, as you breath in once more, and then sound resembles the dentist's suction pipe as you sit in the chair holding a conversation you are still amazed anyone could work out what you just said.

Starting into wind against tide just has to be one of the unfairest things you can do. Your breakfast might be too light to stay where it should. If you're a bit older, your bones are going to be having serious words with the comedian who thought this would be fun. The ambient temperature is cold, the water worse, and the individual who thought it would be good to be ten feet tall and bullet proof is now tapping the communicator vigorously, and asking Scotty just exactly why The Transporter is currently down for service, and how long it is going to be before it is back up.

Funnily enough, in my experience it is always about then that the kerosene canary goes overhead. Nothing goes to windward quite like them. The last time we endured this reminder of the joy of sailing was just a short 30nm day race, but is memorable for around 6 knots rushing one way in a real hurry before it had to clock off, and at least 35 blasting back at you from the other, with a few days of residual seaway accompanying it.

The weather mark was a steel shipping channel buoy, so not the kind of thing you want to do a "weekend at Bernie's" kind of thing with. We gybed and set well, with the pole coming aft promptly, and the bag setting on cue. Only we weren't really moving. That's probably a legacy of only being 29 feet long.

Eventually the puff pushed the symmetrical bag that little bit more, which was nice to have as it was very square, and we took off, slowly at first, and then more rapidly as we got a wiggle on down the waves. I can still remember looking at the can to see if it had spikes, for it sure felt like we were steel, and it was a magnetic mine drawing us in.

But this is about the Fastnet, and looking back to see Sunfast 3300s and Class 40s was wonderful, but nothing was as addictive as the tracker with the Ultim Tri Edmond de Rothschild blasting away like it was the Millennium Falcon. Wicked training for the Jules Verne.

The ClubSwan125 (140' LOA) had a tremendous first outing, but it was the IMOCAs showing that the best way to get to Ireland is via France that seemed more spellbinding than anything. Apivia deserve every credit for their efforts.


No, not a tub of chocolate ice cream. Rather, a moment to congratulate Mat Belcher, Will Ryan and Victor Kovalenko for their brilliance at Enoshima.

Mat bows out as the King of 470s of all time, Will adds the top accolade to all the others the softly spoken fierce competitor has amassed to date, and Victor has again shown just what you need to do to be the one on the top of the dais. Any conversation with him is like spending a lifetime on a pearl lugger in the Timor Sea.

Super short takes

Mark Jardine has been at the UK Moth nationals and delivered some great tales and shots, like this one. Even the weather came to the party.

Colligo Marine are having their first FB Live event, and it is all Synthetic Standing Rigging. Important stuff indeed, so Friday, August 20 and 0900 Pacific Standard Time (or 1200 USA EST), so do your conversions and book it in. Detail awaits you.

Right oh - there is plenty of information on the group's websites for you to review when you can. Please avail yourself of it below.

Now if your class or association is generating material, please submit your material. Got this newsletter from a friend? Would you like your own copy next week? Just follow the instructions on our newsletter page. Whilst there, you can also register for other editions, like Powerboat-World.

Finally, many thanks for making Sail-World your go-to choice. We're always here to keep pumping out the news. Stay safe, and enjoy your time on the water.

John Curnow
Editor, Sail-World AUS

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