Improving Your Fleet: Workshops and On the Water

I’m sure many of you are sailing in a fleet where the same guys win and another group doesn’t win.  If RC Laser racing is your hobby and you want your fleet to stay interested and interesting here’s an idea to lift the spirits and improve the performance of the gang who always shows up, but has a frustrating time trying to improve. Near the end of our Spring series at the Oxford RC Laser Fleet, one of our skippers, after a ho hum evening, asked: “Why don’t the good guys take some time to help us improve.” What a great idea. Our Fleet Captain, Don Barker, seized on this and we are going to hold three successive Wednesday sessions to upgrade the fleet. The intent is to keep everyone active and hopefully improving some skills.

Here is the schedule and topics for the Oxford Workshops. Maybe you could make this concept work in your fleet.

The workshops will start promptly at 4pm, but not last much later than 5-5:30 so that you can arrive home in time for dinner if you need to leave. Please arrive early enough to fully rig your boat and be ready to go by 4pm. We plan to start all workshops with a brief dry land discussion period followed by on the water practice of discussion topics. We will have the use of a conference room and white board, as needed. Roger Vaughan, Dave Branning, and Don Barker may or may not sail during the on water portion. Their main purpose is to actively coach the participating sailors so that each can begin to appreciate the points discussed in the dry land portion of the workshop.

The workshop on Wednesday, July 17th will be led by Don Barker. It will cover:
Sail trim & how to adjust for different conditions:
-outhaul position & how it influences draft and twist
-boom angle with centerline for close hauled and running

The workshop on Wednesday, July 24th will be lead by Roger Vaughan and will cover:
Simplified Racing Rules of Sailing:
-port/starboard, windward/leeward, overtaking on same tackhow to -make the rules work to your advantage
-mark room

The workshop on Wednesday, July 31st will be lead by Dave Branning and will cover:
Racing Strategy:
-starting tactics and preparing for the first weather leg
-windward leg/leeward leg/finish leg

I’m sure you can take this outline and make it work for your fleet improvement program. Hope it helps and we’ll see you at the next regatta.