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Debunking Dodgy Sailing Theories

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JohnW View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JohnW Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Oct 11 at 8:53pm
Originally posted by themeaningoflife

 
This is true for a car and most other racing forms, but with sailing, because there is such a large disparity in speed between upwind and downwind, the quickest way around the course is to spend as little time as possible going upwind, thus tight in, wide out at a windward mark and wide in, tight out at a leeward mark.
What is true however is that at a gybe mark or similar, where there is little speed change, the quickest route is and apex turn.  Smile

NO!  

Look at the title of the thread.
  
You have fallen into the trap in thinking that if you come out tight you sail less distance upwind.  
True you sail less distance from the leeward mark to the windward mark but you are forgetting that you have already sailed an extra boat length or more below the leeward mark because the apex of your turn has to be below the the mark in order to come out tight.


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Post Options Post Options   Quote gbrspratt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 10:52am
Why are you presuming that to go in wide and out tight people dont actually go around the mark? When going in wide surely you just make a shallower  turn (keeping your speed on), come in close to go around the mark and then come out tight? 
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Post Options Post Options   Quote rogue Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 11:28am
I think the quickest way around the mark is in an RS class event. Sail over it.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JohnW Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 2:06pm
Originally posted by gbrspratt

Why are you presuming that to go in wide and out tight people dont actually go around the mark? When going in wide surely you just make a shallower  turn (keeping your speed on), come in close to go around the mark and then come out tight? 

I'm not presuming anything.  If you exit close to the mark, then the mark cant be at the apex of the turn.

I said earlier that for a given optimum rate of turn, the Apex turn is faster. If you have a boat that has a tight optimum rate of turn then yes, you can come out tighter but you will still gain (albeit less) if the mark is at the apex of your turn.

In the following the black path is an Apex turn around red, the blue path is a "racing" turn around red.  The blue path is effectively doing an apex turn around an imaginary mark (blue).  
If the red and blue marks were a leeward gate which one would you choose to round?



Edit: forgot to say, wind blowing down the page.


Edited by JohnW - 25 Oct 11 at 2:08pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote RS400atC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 8:19pm
I wonder if the 'in wide out tight' mantra makes more sense when you are rounding from a dead run?
There is also the 'soft science' factor, it's not the line people actually take you have to convince them about, it's the line they think they are taking. By attempting to come out tight to the mark, do people actually get closer to a true apex turn?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JimC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 10:28pm
I suspect a lot depends on how you are actually approaching the mark... If you are coming in hot with plenty of speed then the best choice might well be different to the choice if you ended up high of the mark and are losing speed as you try and soak down to it...

Edited by JimC - 25 Oct 11 at 10:29pm
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Post Options Post Options   Quote ham4sand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 10:38pm
and if you want the highest lane when going back upwind, that makes a difference to your tactics
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Post Options Post Options   Quote rogue Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Oct 11 at 11:10pm
Originally posted by JimC

I suspect a lot depends on how you are actually approaching the mark... If you are coming in hot with plenty of speed then the best choice might well be different to the choice if you ended up high of the mark and are losing speed as you try and soak down to it...


agreed- especially if that soak is all part of the plan to give you time to get the flappy thing down at the front.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Rupert Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 11 at 4:41pm
Just found this thread...
 
How is that drawing anything like a mark rounding? If I'm rounding in wide out tight, my curve still wouldn't take me below the mark - in fact, I'm not sure it would be a smooth curve at all, especially if there was a gybe involved. Also, racing is about clear wind. If I go round the mark with the apex thing you are talking about, and supposedly gain a boat length, if that puts me in another boat's dirty wind, I'll loose far more up the next beat. If I get inside the boat I was following, I have the tactical upper hand.
 
Another myth - the outhaul should be pulled tight in light winds upwind.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote JohnW Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Nov 11 at 5:37pm
Originally posted by Rupert

Just found this thread...

How is that drawing anything like a mark rounding? If I'm rounding in wide out tight, my curve still wouldn't take me below the mark - in fact, I'm not sure it would be a smooth curve at all, especially if there was a gybe involved. Also, racing is about clear wind. If I go round the mark with the apex thing you are talking about, and supposedly gain a boat length, if that puts me in another boat's dirty wind, I'll loose far more up the next beat. If I get inside the boat I was following, I have the tactical upper hand.

If you come out tight then you cant be doing an apex turn (unless the mark has the same radius as your turn) and therefore by definition you are rounding below the mark.  

My post says that the apex turn is the fastest, not always the best tactically. But when there are no other boats about it is faster.

 
Originally posted by Rupert

Another myth - the outhaul should be pulled tight in light winds upwind.

OK, I'l bite.  

Surely that depends on the boat and the cut of the sail.

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