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Old 31st December 2012, 05:26 PM   #3
Dream Team - School Guru
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,177

Might be worthwhile to make the distinction between Free Ride sails and Free Race sails here.
Free Ride sails Camless ~4.0-7.0 m2 tend to have less draft and be more "price point" sails
and are probably not the fastest size for size.
Free Race sails Camless ~6.5-10.5 m2 tend to have more draft, but less stability than => 3
cambered race sails.
The additional draft is good for gettting you planing in marginal winds, but you probably don't
want to sail the big Free Race sails any where near as overpowered as you would a true =>4 camber race sail, as they lack the race sails top end stability.
So, which is faster depends alot on the conditions (windspeed here), the sailors skills,
and how well the sail is rigged/tuned for the current conditions.
Bruce Peterson, the designer @ Sailworks, did a test a few years ago and placed 2nd in the FW class
at the Nationals on camless Retro sails. He did this as an stifle some of the naysayers
that the camless Free Race Retro would never do well in a race.
Would he have won the class on his NX race sails?...maybe!
The level of competition at the Nationals in the Gorge is about as good as it gets in North America so the Retro sails Bruce was using were certainly not slow.

Last edited by Roger; 1st January 2013 at 01:50 PM.
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