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post #7 of Old 08-19-2013
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Re: Lack of wind on long distance race

Unfortunately the faster rates boats will always be victims of fleet compression when the wind dies. It will happen whether the handicap is calculated time-on-time or time-on-distance. Any time the lead boats sail out of the wind and wait for the slower boats to get to the hole, or the wind fills in from behind it won't be a happy day for the lead boats. Over the course of the season, however, situations like that will probably be balanced out by the situations where the faster boats are able to complete the race before the wind dies, leaving the slower boats to drift home, or escape from the hole before the smaller boats, and disappear.

The biggest thing I see when the wind shuts off is that on a lot of boats the crews pull out the snack and drinks and wait for the wind to come back with their sails flopping. It is the boats that stay focused and never give up trying to keep the boat moving that prevail. In my experience there is almost never NO wind, and there are usually opportunities for the crews that maintain a high level of concentration. Light air sailing can be exhausting!

1979 Santana 30 Tall Rig
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