That is the foil for the roller furling, kind of relaxed on the forestay.
I've always had the admiral assist with the stepping. Gustav made me reconsider my ways during "gusty" conditions. 12 years of doin' it one way and I'm changing it. I really hope to step the stick more often since I want to drag her around behind my dog.
linkey... Telstar Mast Raising - A Patented System