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IYRU, ISAF, WS Rejects ...

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Dougaldog View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dougaldog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 19 at 5:42pm
Old Timer - yes sir....you! I wouldn't mind but I have just been writing about you and said nice things too, only to see your latest post. Don't you read the articles on here? As an example....https://www.yachtsandyachting.com/news/212624/Kindly-Leave-the-Stage

The "FD is pretty Dead" - well, as an ex-505 sailor you might just possibly be excused, but even so, that is a very UK centric viewpoint, as it would be for those who think that the Tornado, Tempest, Soling and others are now a full fathom down pushing up the daisies. 

Ahhh - that UK centric view, never was that expressed more keenly than when first Hyeres, then Santander were the topics. At least some of the media made it to those Trials - you didn't have to be around for long to see that the Fx was way ahead in just about every respect; the two main UK entries, the 900 and the Aurora were nice, well thought out and presented, but were a mile off target from what was going to be the winning boat. The populist view, expressed mainly on here, was "how could they" but the wider, international view at Santander was that the FX was the right choice then and that the results since have proven this to be so - but as Jim C rightly points out, this is a boat with little in the way of traction outside of the 4 yearly Games cycle.
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Rupert View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 19 at 6:08pm
Interestingly, the FX appears to be gaining popularity, at least in a limited way, amongst the youth and other small sailors out for fun. The Andrew Simpson centre in Portland has some, where rupertson is now working, and he has already been out. Makes sense as a stepping stone, just like the radial.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bdu98252 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 19 at 11:23am
The biggest blocker to the FX is the cost of the 49er and then the FX rig and sails. This is around a 24k boat and it is not even clear if you have a combi trailer and covers for this price. You can buy 2 musto skiffs for the price of this. Value for money is what is holding this boat back and the 49er itself from my perpective. Sure it cheaper than a new custom 14 but not by much.   
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 19 at 12:35pm
A few other countries are starting to see youth teams progressing through the FX from the 29er to the 49er. The 49er is a bit of a beast and for 130 kg 29er team it's a big step to 160 as the weight have gone up with 49er square top. 

But... it's a lot of money to dump on a rig you'll probably move on from in one year or two and there doesn't seem to be a great second hand market.  Also there's a hell of a lot more parts to swap between FX and 49er than radial and full rig, the result of which is very few people sell the rigs alone, and they're 8k new!

For anyone outside that pathway then you'd be mental to sail an FX over an RS800. The 800 is far more versatile and accommodating for varied partnerships. A friend had a 49er hull and we discussed buying some more plus second hand FX rigs for club racing... but there just aren't any going cheap. For the same price as a FX rig you can buy an 800 and find a decent circuit to race it beyond your own club swapping in and out crews of varrying sizes.   

There are a few domestic 49er teams, but this fleet is helped massively by the availability of cheap kit which makes them attractive for blasting toys at local clubs. There's three out regularly at HISC. But, the issue is there's not much competition between blasting at your club and getting hammered by pros. 

If you want decent amateur competition then the 800 and I14 have that sewn up. 
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CT249 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote CT249 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 May 19 at 10:51am
Originally posted by Old Timer

Seems there is a long list of classes passed over by our governing body ...


and now of course the ...


Looks like all 3 boats have been knocked back by the big guns after winning equipment trails.

All 3 classes can put 100 boats on a Worlds start line so who needs the Olympics?

What other classes have won trials and done that?

49er won trials and got the slot, that class does not exist outside the Olympics; as did the FD which is now pretty dead ...


Any other classes won trials and gone on to success?

Hmmm, interesting question. One point is that there was never any official claim that the trials involving the Contender or Musto would lead to Olympic selection.

But taking the ISAF trials chronologically, I think the score goes something like this;

1946 - Uffa Fox Tornado chosen "off the board" for a new two-man International class and Olympic boat. Slow and never got going as a class. FAIL

1946-ish - Swallow chosen by RYA for the new Olympic two-man keelboat. Never went anywhere as a class. FAIL.
Note - the boat that Uffa for the trials designed led to the Flying 15.

1950-ish. Spicle chosen in design contest for new Scandinavian/Olympic dinghy. FAIL
1950-ish. Finn chosen in sailing contest for new Scandinavian/Olympic dinghy. SUCCESS

1953-ish - FD chosen as an International class and then Olympic class from 1960 to 1996 (?). Still going. SUCCESS. Several other boats in the trials developed classes, but none did as well as the FD even before it became international.

1957-ish. 505 added to the list of International classes after trials. SUCCESS. None of the other new boats went on to success.

1968-ish - two-person cat trials selected the Tornado. SUCCESS although now pretty quiet as a class. No other boats in the trials developed classes.

1968-ish - one-person cat trials that led to the International Australis (not an Olympic contender). FAIL. One of the other boats developed for the trials (Unicorn) was a minor success as a class.

1968-ish- Contender trials. SUCCESS. Two or three boats developed for the trials had small fleets for a while.

1968-ish- Trials for a new two-man keelboat for the Olympics. Tempest chosen. FAIL.  No other contenders develop classes.

1968-ish - Trials for new three-man keelboat for the Olympics. Soling chosen - SUCCESS (for many years).  Another contender, the Etchells, develops a strong class.

1976-ish - trials for new youth cat. Dart 18 chosen. Hmmmmmm - never really took off outside Europe. Other contenders developed small local classes. SUCCESS or FAIL?

1996-ish - trials for two-person skiff. 49er chosen. Several other contenders have classes but all collapse. SUCCESS

2004-ish - trials for new Olympic windsurfer. RSX chosen, still in the Games. No other contenders succeed (AFAIK). SUCCESS

2008-ish - trials for new Olympic cat. Updated Tornado chosen. SUCCESS????

2008-ish - trials of interesting new singlehanded skiffs. No choice made?  MPS becomes a success.?????

2012-ish - Women's skiff trials, 49erFX selected. No other contender creates a class. SUCCESS (perhaps limited).

2019 - singlehander trials. Laser wins scores on water, Aero wins overall scores. Laser chosen. SUCCESS (in my humble opinion).

To my eye it looks as if WS/ISAF etc have a pretty good record. Only one of the classes that failed at the trials has gone on to become a major worldwide success (the Etchells) and the actual accounts of the trials show why the Soling was a reasonable choice. The Osprey, Hornet and Thistle that did the FD trials have done well but only on a national basis; perhaps they were all a bit parochial in their design whereas the FD always had a focus on international appeal.

The classes selected "off the drawing board" for Olympic favouritism were failures but two earlier classes (Int 12 and 12 Sq Mtr Sharpie) that were selected from design competitions and then allowed to grow their own fleets before selection were successes - the Int 12 got 171 boats to its centenary event in 2013 or 14.

The two biggest failures were the Tempest, Swallow (chosen by the RYA) and Australis. One very good source has said that the designer of the Australis chose to spend all his energy (and WS funds) on his own business rather than the boat's promotion. Others say that while it won the trials it was too expensive. 










Edited by CT249 - 25 May 19 at 10:56am
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Dougaldog View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dougaldog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 May 19 at 2:47pm
It is an all too easy mistake to make for posts on here to be overly UK centric, but at the same time, it is equally wrong to take a southern hemisphere/Australian viewpoint of what is actually a much bigger and more complex picture. Having been tasked to document the Proctor Centenary last year, there is no way that I would describe the Tempest as a 'failure' - that smacks of research only being done at the keyboard. The boat performed well at two Olympics and in terms of performance, was in a different league to the other keelboats of the day. How many Olympics does a class have to appear at to be judged a success? If there was a failure in the class, it was in a nave approach when in the back rooms and corridors of the IYRU, for that is where the fate of the Tempest was decided. But as I pointed out in 'Kindly leave the stage', being dumped out of the Olympics has not been the death knell for the class, nor has it been for the FD. Both are very popular in central and eastern Europe, where they still provide great racing.

As for all the other comments, there are just too many errors to answer them all - but yes, the Osprey is very much a domestic boat but is certainly not one that you can call a 'failure'. Ditto the Hornet....a boat that may be UK based now, but in the past had a good following in other nations (including Australia).

And as for the Contender - yep, the offer was for 3 Olympic cycles....

D
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CT249 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote CT249 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 May 19 at 11:05pm
"Research done only at the keyboard"??? Why do you say that?  I've spoken to a few Tempest sailors about the boat and read a lot of the contemporary press. Sure, I haven't sailed the boat or done the worlds but I pretty sure that you haven't researched everything you put up on a forum to that level either. Just to mention a fraction of my research, I've interviewed people around the world, sailed classes as diverse as an Int 12 in Venice, an Ent in Chester and an 18 in Sydney and wandered the clubs and marinas in Bremen and SF with camera and notebook, so it is completely untrue to infer that I'm only doing keyboard research or ignoring the wider picture - in fact the reason I really got into dinghy history was that I was annoyed with the parochial nature of many histories and my basic beliefs are that almost every region has contributed a lot to the sport and that the links between regional developments are vital.

To be honest, your remark about "too many errors to call them all" seems very snarky - please just identify those alleged errors so we can discuss them. To say that someone is wrong for unspecified reasons is Kafkaesque and unfair.

Given that the original post was about boats that could get 100 entries at world titles, it appeared that the OP's definition of "success" was something similar. It would also seem to be reasonable to say that a "success" is a class that lives up to the general expectations of what it will achieve. When most of the classes that have been selected have been involved in many Olympics (as with the Finn, FD, Soling, Tornado, 49er, RSX) or attract large truly international fleets (Contender, 505) it seems reasonable to set the "pass mark" at around that level. 

The Tempest is a lovely boat - never said it wasn't - but sources like the class history says it was intended to replace the Star and it did not do that, nor does it get anything like 100 boats to world titles or a worldwide fleet; more like 30+. It only has a class in six nations, and one of those has only six boats. It recently claimed an Australian fleet as well, but I think three of the four boats were owned by one man who did not race them - I've seen most of them when chatting to him at his place, which by the way is an example of "non-keyboard research". The point is that it has clearly not been as successful as other classes that won trials, nor as successful as many expected when it was selected.

I did NOT call the Osprey or Hornet a failure so I don't know why you imply that I did. They existed in small fleets in other countries but only "did well" in the UK (unless one counts the Polish Hornet fleet which I believe to also be pretty small).  The facts are as I said - several other boats in the trials developed classes, but none did as well as the FD did. 


Edited by CT249 - 26 May 19 at 11:35pm
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Rupert View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 19 at 8:42am
The A and B class catamaran trials are interesting. It does appear from the outside, and reading books from the era, that the overwhelming success of the Tornado, followed by Olympic success, rather did for the B class as a development fleet. Conversely, the Australis never catching on seems to have allowed the A Class to flourish. The success of the Unicorn in the UK spears to have stunted the growth of the A Class compared to its European neighbours.

If the Australis had been as dominant as the Tornado, would the A Class have faded too?
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Dougaldog View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Dougaldog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 19 at 9:56am
Hi Rupert!
I think we once discussed this over on the cvrda forum- someone there had a Unicorn. It is an interesting question that you've posed, but in the end, it is just one of many that came out of the Cat Trials! Talk about leaving even more questions unanswered. I used to sail and still see quite often one of the crews from the B Class Trials (if you want to find anything out around here, the freezer aisle at Tescos is the place for sailors to meet) and some of the early A Class crowd.  It's a shame, for the Australis was such a pretty boat but in these pre-carbon days there were valid questions from the outset if it would ever be robust enough for the rough and tumble of every day sailing. The one that was sailed down at Weston a lot seemed to lack the ruggedness of the Unicorn - but at the time, the Australian boat had the better rig. But again, talking to the guys who were there (accepting that they might have axes to grind) their comments seem to be that the Unicorn was the better boat, let down by the rig That said, it might have been political expediency to spread the results out a bit, so the UK could claim success with Tornado, the Aussies with Australis. This leaves you with the possibility of reasking the question but in a different way: what if...Unicorn had sailed with a more sorted rig OR what if the Australis could have been delivered as agreed -only to come up with the same answer. Back then, had the market for a single handed cat been overstated? We've seen this happen with other genres and with regard to the A class, for a long time the Unicorn was still the best of the bunch and that includes the Euro boats too. So maybe..not so much that it stunted growth, but that it filled the niche that existed 'at that time'!

The Australis that was around here is now long gone but we still have Unicorns sailing and if you get a chance to have a go, do so, they're still a cracking boat to sail!

Dougal
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CT249 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote CT249 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 19 at 9:26pm
Dougal, would you mind telling me what you think I got wrong in my post?


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