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Old 17th June 2011, 01:02 AM   #21
sergio k
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BelSkorpio View Post
Not that long time ago, I was talking with an ex formula competition sailor.
The way he explained it, FW can be one of the most exhausting disciplines.

Often they need to carry the wide board + 12m gear (quite heavy) on very wide sandy beaches for a long distance to reach the water. Arriving at the water, already tired, heated up and full of sweat, they often encounter a strong shore break where they have to go through, trying not to drop the 12m sail into the water and manage their way to the more clean & open sea. There somtimes waits a huge swell with lots of chop, very eager to tear down all that nice but rather heavy equipment. Do you get a little bit the picture ...

Don't get me wrong, I like FW. But I've seen a competition going on at the rough baltic sea in Poland and I say "Respect, to all FW competition surfers out there !"
again, it's all about local conditions, open ocean + nasty shore break + FW (70 cm fin) - is one tough proposition, we have 1 race like that in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, and it's equipment carnage, I come in hopes that conditions would be more favorable, but in 99% I don't go out, and help out others to get back to the shore... But, most locations have good, no shore break, access to the water. And you don't have to be macho - you can carry board than sail to the water...
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Old 17th June 2011, 01:39 AM   #22
Ken
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Yes, Formula is a pain in the butt if you have to launch through shore break. No easy way around it unless you have help - thanks sergio. I have had to do this many times in the shorebreak and 25 knot winds in Corpus Christi Bay.

However, most of my formula sailing is in lakes. I carry a small mushroom anchor with a float, and take it out with the board to 1 meter of water and tie the board off. Then I get the sail and attach it on the water. I have a mechanical U-Joint so it's not hard to connect the sail to the board. I reverse the process at the end of the day. I keep the board moored in the water if I take a break. I simply don't carry the entire rig in one piece any more.

Always looking for was to make it more fun.
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Old 17th June 2011, 03:23 PM   #23
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hang on, i just want to get my ducks in a row.

Ken in post 11 mocks the assertion that FW is " quite technical, requires high ability and strength" and does so by offering himself as an example of a 66 year old who can handle the FW gear.

Ken then goes on to say in post 14 "If you get comfortable with 6 and 7 meter sails as your largest, the 11 & 12 meters sails do seem "giant" and hard to manage. However, once your skill level gets to the point of rarely dropping the sail, staying powered and balance while hooked in is pretty comfortable."
this contradicts his mocking of FW being quite technical and requiring a high skill level doesnt it?

Ken then goes on in post 17 to talk about his racing experience. He has raced since 1984 and got to a level whereby he can "keep(ing) the board in a 10 meter box in 20 knots of wind" on a start line.
so Ken you are a very bad example as you may be 66 but you are highly experienced and have obviously raced a number of classes with a number of different styles before arriving at Formula with a relatively high skill level.

sergiok says in post 10 "For req. use or participation in races but not expecting great results (just having fun...) all you needis basic strength and technique"
he then says in post 21 "we have 1 race like that in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, and it's equipment carnageI come in hopes that conditions would be more favorable, but in 99% I don't go out, and help out others to get back to the shore" so the equipment is unwieldy and technical and requires a high skill level. Sergio freely admits that he does not have the skill level to race this equipment in these conditions. of course not everywhere is like ft lauderdale but many places are and 70cm fins and 12m rigs are unsailable in a lot of those places and very difficult in a huge number of others.

there is nothing wrong with FW but it is quite technical and it does require a high skill level and quite a bit of strength. It is an extreme( can be spectacular) version of windsurfing and has limited appeal as a racing class.
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Old 17th June 2011, 03:54 PM   #24
Floyd
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Sorry Ken and Sergio
I have to agree with unreg and have said in other posts/threads many similar things re your posts but hey wot the hell.Nobody is perfect !!
Think Ken does build up Formula but must have a few holes in his feet by now !! (errrrr, shot himself there a few times)

But Ken`s enthusiasm even over forum is infectious so keep it up and keep sailing Ken.

Afraid I didnt understand the mushroom anchor idea but I`m not a formula sailor. In shorebreak? Calm ? Why ?

Last edited by Floyd; 17th June 2011 at 04:11 PM.
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Old 17th June 2011, 06:55 PM   #25
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I think I understand the mushroom shaped anchor idea, as it is a (good) idea to avoid the long walking to go back to the beach to have a rest; to find the anchor Ken attaches a flaoting object. I used to do the same to find the end of the chord attached to the stern of my boat, when in deeper waters, leaving one of the two sets depending from increasing or decrsing wind. Now I'm thinkin to do something to attach it no to the board but to the tip of the sail, for avoiding the board to knock in the boat and for meking visible the sail to the nasty motor boats often running too near the sail layng flat in the water surface (I fear it can happen they run OVER the sail...)
On the opposite I was planning to carry with me a micro umbrella-style anchor for long trips in my lagoon with the Serenity, but carrying it with me in a backpack or if really tiny in the drinks-strorage-box of the board where there are the heads of the fin screws.I'd have to find before something to calculate the weight of the boat (board) to width of anchor ratio.
Ideas...
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Old 17th June 2011, 07:34 PM   #26
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The anchor is a good idea. I sail on a lake too, on a longboard, and my preferred lauch point is bordered by pointy rocks.

When it's windy, it's is difficult to carry both sail and board since you have to take a few steps on the slippery and unstable rocks. Loosing balance could mean a hole in your sail or board! So I usually bring the sail in the water first, then run to shore and back with board before the sail is pushed on shore.

I will use the anchor to bring my board to water first, and come back without rush with my sail. It will also be usefull with the kids. They are unable to carry the stuff over the rocks, so they usually do the human anchor waiting for me. Trouble is, they will sometimes just leave their equipment there and get out quickly because they feel cold. I'm then stuck with two kits in the water!

Thanks for the idea!
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Old 17th June 2011, 10:42 PM   #27
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If I am contradicting myself, that is not my intention. In a nut shell. Formula isn't for everyone, but it is the answer to planing in light wind conditions if that is your goal. However, some of the new "light wind slalom" boards (Ultrasonic) my be a better solution than formula (if you aren't a racer). Even with the Ultrasonic, you will still need a big sail, mast and boom to plane fast in 8-10 knots.

My point in pushing formula as a 66 year old windsurfer is just to point out that the "giant board, giant fin, giant sail" paranoia out there may not be fully justified. Yes, it's big and cumbersome, but if a 66 year old, 77kg guy can manage it, why not all you 20 - 50 year old guys/gals? All I am trying to do is provide my perspective on formula sailing, nothing more. Formula gives me more days on the water, and I see that as a good thing. The other option is an SUP or my old Superlight. I simply choose to plane on my formula board rather than glide around on a longboard.

The anchor thing is for one major reason, I don't have to carry the entire formula kit in one piece to or from the water. Where I generally sail, the shoreline is protected from chop, so the board/sail attached to a float doesn't normally wear or damage anything. On a busy day, there may be a dozen anchors and buoys at my sailing site for all sizes of boards and rigs. I only do this when I am sure that the wave action won't do any damage to my gear. Why bring your rig to the beach of you can leave it in the water? The anchor is a 10 lb. vinyl coated, mushroom shape anchor, purchased from West Marine. A few guys even use rocks or cinder blocks as anchors with milk jugs as floats.

Yes, I have a lot of experience, and my comments regarding racing were intended to show that you will likely gain experience much faster if you race. This isn't true for everyone since there are some highly committed sailors that push their limits 100% of the time. However, after watching windsurfers "do their thing" for 27 years, most don't push their limits and stagnate in their progression. Racing is one way to get you off your complacent butt. Bottom line - if it's fun and you are happy with your level of progression, go for it, it's fine with me.

Many of us need a push to get to the next level, regardless of the endeavor.
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Old 17th June 2011, 11:00 PM   #28
sergio k
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Wow, let go over it one more time:
1.I'm 50 years old, 62kg, 165 cm, walking thru large shore break , from what I see, you have to be physically bigger/taller to clear it with 10-12m2 sail, just don't have enough static leverage, or extra
cash to replace gear... BUT, great majority of races are done with good access to the water, small or no shore break, I do participate in those, and do OK (I do it just for fun and I'm not very competitive).
2. To win in FW race you have to be technical, physically fit and size helps also (so in slalom), but to participate all you need is basic technique and avg. physical fitness level, we have guys that being windsurfing for year+ participating in events. If it was easy to win - what would be the point??
3. For req. use in light wind locations(7-12 kn avg), no excessive shore break, not super shallow it's the best option even for beginner if you want to plane and not seat on the beach waiting for the wind to build...


QUOTE=Unregistered;50092]hang on, i just want to get my ducks in a row.

Ken in post 11 mocks the assertion that FW is " quite technibbcal, requires high ability and strength" and does so by offering himself as an example of a 66 year old who can handle the FW gear.

Ken then goes on to say in post 14 "If you get comfortable with 6 and 7 meter sails as your largest, the 11 & 12 meters sails do seem "giant" and hard to manage. However, once your skill level gets to the point of rarely dropping the sail, staying powered and balance while hooked in is pretty comfortable."
this contradicts his mocking of FW being quite technical and requiring a high skill level doesnt it?

Ken then goes on in post 17 to talk about his racing experience. He has raced since 1984 and got to a level whereby he can "keep(ing) the board in a 10 meter box in 20 knots of wind" on a start line.
so Ken you are a very bad example as you may be 66 but you are highly experienced and have obviously raced a number of classes with a number of different styles before arriving at Formula with a relatively high skill level.

sergiok says in post 10 "For req. use or participation in races but not expecting great results (just having fun...) all you needis basic strength and technique"
he then says in post 21 "we have 1 race like that in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, and it's equipment carnageI come in hopes that conditions would be more favorable, but in 99% I don't go out, and help out others to get back to the shore" so the equipment is unwieldy and technical and requires a high skill level. Sergio freely admits that he does not have the skill level to race this equipment in these conditions. of course not everywhere is like ft lauderdale but many places are and 70cm fins and 12m rigs are unsailable in a lot of those places and very difficult in a huge number of others.

there is nothing wrong with FW but it is quite technical and it does require a high skill level and quite a bit of strength. It is an extreme( can be spectacular) version of windsurfing and has limited appeal as a racing class.[/QUOTE]
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Old 18th June 2011, 02:26 AM   #29
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Aplogies
I totally misunderstood use of anchor.Thought it was for helping rig/launch in shore break. Its simply leaving kit at anchor in calm water whilst you have a beer ??? Great idea !!! I`m for that one !!

Great thread. Nice to see folk with something to say again !!! Even if you dont agreee with it all !!

Do reckon Ken contradicts himself now and again but what he has to say is always said with enthusiasm and help in mind.
I like how he often tells us he sails in a light wind area but then tells us about 25knot boardspeeds and boards getting blown down beaches.!!!
I never contradict myself !!!!??? Honest

Still reckon all other sports are for people who haven`t tried WS.

Couldnt get Formula in my car ! Do I really want to sail in winds where Formula would shine above others ?? No not really ! I got 73 days in last year with 124 litres my biggest board !! Is Formula more technical ?? I dont think so;no more than many other aspects. (I`ve been trying to beat 40 knots in open sea for past 4 years ?? Thats pretty technical with GPS;fins;board choice;cams or no cams.Vmax 2 sec or 10. Auto time intervals or fixed; mast choice.RDM/SDM/Flex tops.VMG;best angle.Highest average? 1 hour/3 hours.Tides Down loading trak logs/filtering/spikes/arguing in pub/.List goes on and on. All aspects of WS can be as technical as you want to make them.
Or you can just go and sail.

Dont think its valid to claim one discipline is more technical/harder/easier than any other. Its up to you with them all.

Years (and years) ago I used to race Windgliders. Harnesses were not allowed. Dagger boards had to carried over your shoulder and we`d race for 1 hour in any conditions. In those days (82 ish) we`d have fleets of 20/30 easily. That was hard work but any harder than now ??? There`s only so much effort you can put in.



Good sailing.
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Old 18th June 2011, 09:24 PM   #30
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Floyd,

I agree, good discussion and a fun thread. I hope others take something away from it that will be either helpful or inspirational.

In Dallas, Texas, we get good winds October - June, then the three months of summer pretty much "suck" for windsurfing. Summer is when the formula board comes into play and gets used quite a lot.

This year has been exceptional in Dallas for wind. I will be out today in 15-25 knot winds for my 49th sailing day since Jan. 1. We have 5 days in a row with the same forecast, but it's HOT. 103F (39.4C).

No need for formula today, but I did go out on it about a week ago in 5-20 knot winds with a 9.2. When the weather is hot, our winds are EXTREMELY VARIABLE. On a few 1km reaches yesterday on a 5.0 sail, I would encounter winds ranging from 5 to 20, to 10, to 25, to 15 knots. You can watch/see the dark patches of swirling wind on the water moving towards you, so it keeps you on your toes. Other times you may plane on relatively steady winds for some distance, jibe and then slog all the way back. It's a pain, but better than staying at home.

Good sailing
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