Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Speed & Smarts: Sail toward the next shift

By David Dellenbaugh

This is a sure-fire rule of thumb that works in any wind condition. Of course, you must be able to predict which way the wind will shift next. But if you can do this, all you have to do is sail in that direction and you will come out ahead (assuming you don’t overstand the windward mark).

In an oscillating breeze, sailing toward the next shift is basically the same as tacking on the headers. In a persistently shifting breeze, sailing toward the next shift is the same as digging into the favored side. In both cases, this strategy works because when the wind shifts you end up on a higher ladder rung than boats that went the other way.

For more racing tips and resources from David Dellenbaugh, visit the Speed and Smarts website.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Speed & Smarts: Follow Your Strategic Plan

By David Dellenbaugh

This sounds simple, but it’s not always so easy to do. A strategy is your game plan for how to sail fast up the first beat, a guideline to keep you going the right way. It’s not so difficult to develop a strategic plan – you just have to get out to the starting area early and gather information about the wind. But putting that plan into action is another story.

When you come off the starting line, it’s easy to lose your focus amidst all the distractions. But if you want to be succesful you must do two things:

1) Keep your strategic plan in mind and make it your number one priority; and
2) Use good tactics and anticipation to stay in control of your race. Don’t let other boats keep you from following your strategy.

For more racing tips and resources from David Dellenbaugh, visit the Speed and Smarts website.

Case Study: An Emergency Action Plan Report from OCSC

When a Life Hangs in the Balance – Emergency at the Club

By Rich Jepsen and Steve Saul

All sailing instructors and program directors are trained in the ‘what ifs’ of safety and risk in our jobs teaching kids and adults how to sail, while providing them opportunities to enjoy their new found skills.

We all know it is a question of when rather than if we will need to use that training and planning. On April 30, 2014 OCSC Sailing, a keelboat school in Berkeley, CA, had its staff training and preparation put to a heavy test when one of our staff members was struck with cardiac arrest while traveling on a 21’ Zodiac with another instructor just outside our marina.

This staff member is an OCSC instructor and has been with us for well over a decade, teaching sailing from the basics to bareboat cruising and helping to lead international flotillas of OCSC members and friends around the world.

Below in italics is a slightly edited version of the official incident report from Steve Saul, the driver of that Zodiac, the victim’s fellow instructor and the person who set the entire process of saving this individual’s life into motion.

Monday, June 9, 2014

College Sailing's Chalk Talk - Season Finale

Chalk Talk says goodbye for the season with a look back at Gill Coed Nationals at St. Mary's, where Chris Love was on hand for ESPNU coverage of the event. Get a sneak peek of some of the highlights and see the Chalk Talk hosts dress up like sailing coaches as the prediction contest winner is announced.

Chalk Talk is presented by US Sailing with support from Zim Sailing and produced by Chris Love Productions.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

College Sailing's Chalk Talk: National Championship Coverage

Chalk Talk recaps the 2014 Sperry Top-Sider Women's National Championships and APS Team Race Nationals which concluded in Maryland this week. The gang looks over the list for Gill Coed Dinghy Nationals, which includes two days of semifinals racing this year. We will preview the contenders!