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Start Tactics: How do I not get stuffed?

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JRW1019 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JRW1019 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 10:59pm
If you do find yourself on the line earlier than you
expected with everyone behind you you need to protect
your position. If there is a gap below you ensure that
you look behind and stop anyone getting too close to you
in that gap, that involve bearing away very slightly or
pushing the boom out, but whatever you can do to protect
the space to leeward then try it. If you are in the
opposite situation trying to find a gap, coming along
behind the fleet on port and tacking into a gap can work
quite well as the boat to windward of the gap has less
they can do about shutting you out.

The trouble with starting late and trying to find a gap
with less time to go is that at the favoured end space
may be at a premium and gaps are hard to come by. I would
imagine 4000's accelerate quite quickly so it may pay to
be reasonably close to the line earlyish
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Post Options Post Options   Quote jeffers Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 5:54pm

What I generally do is position myself below a slower boat that I know will outpoint me on the first beat and try to avoid letting a boat that can outpoint me get in below me.

This is in Handicap races when i am sailing the 8.1 and about the only thing at Hunts that can outpace me upwind is a Phantom, I tend to avoid them like the plague!

In a fleet race it is all about creating yourself a space on the line and protecting it. The trick is to not be there too early or too late. Also remind any boat that come up from below you and luffs up that they have to give you time (and space) to respond. So if you are pretty much stationary on the line they cannot push you up they have to allow you room to get enough boat speed to the rudder works.

The other thing I tend to do in a fleet race is keep moving (unless it is a packed line) and dive in to gap with about 20 s to go and hit the line at full speed. This can punch you out the front and it to clear air really well.

I must point out that because I am at the heavier end of the spectrum for a Laser I do tend to not point quite so high as the flyweights unless it is blowing but go for boatspeed instead which (usually) more than makes up for the extra distance I have to sail.

If the line is short and the course relatively square sometimes you can start at the non favoured end (or away from the favoured end) and in clear air which makes a much bigger difference than winning the correct end. I do this a lot in club racing but not at an open as the standard is much higher.

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ellistine View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ellistine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 4:04pm
Three, sometimes four 4000's but part of a handicap race so
generally 20 or so other boats.

Perhaps I need to work on my timing and approach a bit
later and faster.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote tgruitt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:57pm
Originally posted by ellistine

Originally posted by AlexM

are you getting to the line to early? And
sitting there like a duck

Quite possibly. Infact, more than likely. Not a bad point.
Presumably keep it moving then?


If the fleet find out you are bad at starting then they will be queuing up to start next to you, it makes it an easy option for them. Just try and find a gap with room below you to bear off into, there can't be that many L4000's on the line.
Needs to sail more...
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ellistine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:49pm
Originally posted by AlexM

are you getting to the line to early? And
sitting there like a duck

Quite possibly. Infact, more than likely. Not a bad point.
Presumably keep it moving then?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote AlexM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:44pm
are you getting to the line to early? And sitting there like a duck
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JimC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:35pm
Originally posted by ellistine

What are the best counter-tactics to make sure you don't
have to listen to someone going "up you go Keith, up you
go"?

Be the one doing it to them [grin].
Not something I personally have to think about too much, but its an area covered in most basic racing coaching sessions, see if you can get on a club level course if there's no 4 Tonner coaching available...
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ellistine View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ellistine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:33pm
That's what I don't get. I am always trying to get into a
position to do the pushing but always end up getting
pushed.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ham4sand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:19pm
next race try and be the ones using the rights, always keep
an eye out to leeward and try and perfect holding position
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ellistine View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ellistine Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 10 at 3:18pm
Yep all 4000s. They don't out point us when sailing but
they do like to use their rights to push us up on the
approach to the start line. Creates them a nice gap to bear
away into and leaves us ducking the boom trying to stop the
bloody thing tacking!
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