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International Canoe Training and Open at Castle Cove Sailing Club

by Rob Bell & Steve Clarke 25 May 2022 08:08 PDT 8-10 May 2022
International Canoes at Castle Cove © Rick Bowers

Castle Cove SC Training (8th May 2022, by Rob Bell, Hon Sec. GBR342)

An enthusiastic fleet of International Canoes assembled at Castle Cove SC on 8th May for our first training session of 2022. The sun was out, the breeze was up & Adam Bowers, with assistant Nick Craig, took us straight in to a sequence of three-minute rolling starts. Like the true pros we are, the fleet produced a carefully choreographed series of approaches to the line - for subsequent dissection on video - to demonstrate the good, the bad and the ugly of starting an IC. We finished with a short race allowing the canoes to stretch their legs in the glorious conditions, good for the soul.

What did we learn?

A canoe has the knack of keeping any ego in check; you don't need a start watch if you stay in the vicinity of Glen; a T foil can also be used to pick up anchor lines, and there are few things that can match the experience of sailing an IC upwind in breeze!

Thanks to Adam Bowers, Nick Craig, Gareth Caldwell & Rick Bowers for a great day - we need more!

Castle Cove SC Open Premier Event (9th/10th May 2022, by Steve Clarke, Chairman GBR338)

Fresh from the Friday training session, with words of wisdom from Adam Bowers on starting techniques and the finer points of rounding marks echoing through the heads of the assembled canoe sailors, Saturday morning brought a promising outlook of sunny skies and a moderate breeze from the east, or possibly the south west. The fact that the switch in the wind was due in the middle of the race schedule was clearly weighing heavily on the race officer who tried to determine when to start the racing.

Whilst the fleet assembled, there was time to reflect on the new pieces of hardware developed overt the winter months and check out new developments. Glen Truswell's "Tiger" looked glorious and triumphant, having securing the coveted Concours d'Elegance award at the Dinghy Show and showing off the latest thinking in rudder foils taken from his extensive I14 experience. With Robin Wood and Tony Robertshaw also with new foils it was going to be interesting to see they performed against the rest of the fleet, especially in the lighter conditions. Many new suits of sails had been produced over the winter, in particular from HD and Weymouth's own Moatt Sails, so there was keen interest to see which would make that difference all are seeking to gain that little extra speed.

With a medium easterly maintaining its dominance, the Race Officer decided to release the fleet of IC's, Hadrons and Contenders in the vain hope that it could be sustained for at least one race. This hope soon faded 30 minutes in to the first race when the conflicting wind directions mixed, creating some interesting conditions across the course; the race was duly abandoned. Fortunately, after a short delay the promised south westerly established itself and three races were sailed in a reasonable 10-15 knots of breeze.

Glen Truswell soon showed his dominance of the event with three straight wins, closely followed by Robin Wood. The chasing pack enjoyed close and highly competitive racing with constant changes of position, with overnight 3rd place held by Alistair Warren.

Sunday was a much easier proposition for the Race Officer with a medium E/SE 12-16 knot wind forecast. The conditions were pretty much perfect throughout the day with three good races. The biggest issues being which way to go up the beat, and pick out any advantages in shifts over the course, and how to avoid the other fleets, which soon included several other races from the academy and all sorts of exotic surf board things with huge great kites pulling them along at ludicrous speeds!

The racing followed a similar pattern to the previous day with Truswell dominating, but with Wood finally getting into his stride, albeit somewhat late in the day, to show him most of the way around the race track, around the last race, except for the vital last legs.

So, what of the foils, do they make a difference? The jury's out on that one but as the season unfolds, it will soon become apparent. Certainly, the leading two were significantly faster upwind and Tony Robertshaw was flying once he had got to grips with his foil adjustment with a 2nd place in race 5 and would have done better if he hadn't decided to go for a detour around the wrong windward mark in the last race.

Overall Results:

PosHelmSail NoR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1Glen TruswellGBR3501111115
2Rob WoodGBR3352222DNC210
3Alistair WarrenGBR31753334316
4Steve ClarkeGBR33834643418
5Tony RobertshawGBR32978552625
6Phil RobinGBR32896466729
7Phil AllenGBR343811875533
8Rob BellGBR342657107DNC35
9John EllisGBR346129DNC89846
10Perham HardingGBR3531410DNC98950
11Pete SmithGBR29615131011DNCDNC69
12Mike FenwickGBR34147DNCDNCDNCDNC71
13Hugh de LonghGBR32610129DNCDNCDNC71
14Martin RobbGBR3491314DNCDNCDNCDNC87

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