GGR entrants getting clobbered - Page 4 - SailNet Community
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post #31 of 53 Old 12-07-2018
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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For instance, two competitors are soon to drop out of the GGR and relegate themselves to the Chichester Class because they chose a bottom paint that wasn't up to the voyage, while the leader, Jean Luc, seems to have no problem with his bottom and barnacles. I gotta find out what antifouling he is using!!!!
Agreed. I would bet on a hard paint with multiple ablative coats.

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Secondly, the much-touted Jordan series drogue seems not to be all it is cracked up to be and failed to prevent Susie from pitchpoling, this morning, and losing her rig.
I think this might be because she lost her wind steering. If a big enough wave catches you on the beam, you will roll - the drogue only works if you have steerage.
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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I think this might be because she lost her wind steering. If a big enough wave catches you on the beam, you will roll - the drogue only works if you have steerage.
Never used a drogue, or even considered using a drogue. My understanding is, this is a pssive technique for when you are too sacked to steer.


Cant see sitting in a cockpit steering when getting pooped. Makes no sense to me, let her run if you are steering.
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

I would be interested to know how she was using her drogue. I've never deployed one in anger, but my understanding is you fly a handkerchief sail, head generally downwind, which should be the general direction of the waves and the drogue slows you down. In this scenario, the waves should be overtaking you and I find it hard to imagine how one pitchpoles.

Perhaps the waves were so confused, she was caught on the beam.

I wonder, if she was trying to use the drogue to manage excessive wind and boat speed, but still take a favorable tack to make VMG. Maybe wind on the beam and waves near the beam, but a racers mentality to move ahead, rather than the safest deployment of the drogue. Downwind very well may be been losing ground.

Anyone know?


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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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Anyone know?
I believe the line securing it parted at some point. Wasn’t clear if it was before or after pitch pole: she discovered it after.
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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I think this might be because she lost her wind steering. If a big enough wave catches you on the beam, you will roll - the drogue only works if you have steerage.
One does not get pitchpoled when lying abeam to the seas. A drogue is one of those items many folks use when running under bare poles in heavy weather. Steering is not necessarily a factor in that scenario as the wind and waves are propelling the boat forward.
However, after extensive non-single handed ocean sailing experience, I have discarded both my sea anchors and drogues. I prefer my vessel be free to get out from under a breaking sea in heavy weather. The longest I've had to steer in these conditions was 22 hours and it is obvious that a singlehanded circumnavigator cannot do that, but perhaps the fact that the Jordan series drogue did not save her from a pitchpole could be taken by those not single handing not to rely on a drogue, but to steer through the event.

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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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I would be interested to know how she was using her drogue. I've never deployed one in anger, but my understanding is you fly a handkerchief sail, head generally downwind, which should be the general direction of the waves and the drogue slows you down. In this scenario, the waves should be overtaking you and I find it hard to imagine how one pitchpoles.
Running downwind is precisely the situation under which one pitchpoles. The boat surges ahead down the face of a wave and when the bow reaches the trough of the wave, it digs in and stops while the stern keeps going, causing the boat the boat to rotate end-over-end (not a sideways roll). The circumstances aren't entirely known in Susie's case but it seems likely that the drogue parted before or during the pitchpole. With the drogue no longer providing any resistance, the stern was free to take off.
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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Running downwind is precisely the situation under which one pitchpoles. The boat surges ahead down the face of a wave and when the bow reaches the trough of the wave, it digs in and stops while the stern keeps going, causing the boat the boat to rotate end-over-end (not a sideways roll). The circumstances aren't entirely known in Susie's case but it seems likely that the drogue parted before or during the pitchpole. With the drogue no longer providing any resistance, the stern was free to take off.
Right, thatís what happens without a drogue, but with one, the waves should be moving underneath, no? I now realize she lost her drogue before the pitch pole, which makes more sense. Iím not sure that damns a drogue as ineffective, altogether. Was chafe the cause?


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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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Right, thatís what happens without a drogue, but with one, the waves should be moving underneath, no? I now realize she lost her drogue before the pitch pole, which makes more sense. Iím not sure that damns a drogue as ineffective, altogether. Was chafe the cause?
No, when running in those conditions I've found a drogue slows you down to the point that the waves occasionally crash directly onto the boat! I have found that to be an absolutely terrifying experience. So much so that after a few of these, I cut the drogue free and took over the job of steering myself. Can you even imagine a 50 foot wave crashing on the aft 1/3rd of your boat? Isn't your boat an aft cockpit boat?
I doubt Susie, a very experienced ocean sailor, would allow chafe to happen. She wasn't in any way incapacitated or injured before the pitchpole.
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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No, when running in those conditions I've found a drogue slows you down to the point that the waves occasionally crash directly onto the boat! I have found that to be an absolutely terrifying experience. So much so that after a few of these, I cut the drogue free and took over the job of steering myself. Can you even imagine a 50 foot wave crashing on the aft 1/3rd of your boat? Isn't your boat an aft cockpit boat?.[/B]

This is exactly how Bernard Moitessier recommends handling storm conditions. I canít remember which book it is, but he suggests hand steering down the waves and turn up into them just as you reach the trough. Difficult to do for any lengthy period of time though.
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Re: GGR entrants getting clobbered

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....Can you even imagine a 50 foot wave crashing on the aft 1/3rd of your boat? Isn't your boat an aft cockpit boat?....
50 ft? How often does that occur. When it does, I don't really care where one's cockpit is located, nor which direction the break comes from. You're in trouble.

On a more rational basis, I get your point that a drogue and following wave set isn't perfect, nor is a sea anchor facing into them. Nor is having the personal ability to hand steer through them in all cases. It is what is it.......a survival storm and the skipper is only moderately in control of the outcome.

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I doubt Susie, a very experienced ocean sailor, would allow chafe to happen. She wasn't in any way incapacitated or injured before the pitchpole.
While I know her pedigree, I doubt even she would be willing to say she was immune to chafe. Do we know how it parted?


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