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Old 28-08-2015, 11:09   #1
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How to practice start?

Hi,everyone.

I'm a beginner. Sailing with 420&FJ.
But I'm the leader of sailing club of my high school.

So I have no idea to practice "start".
Do you know how to practice "start"?

Our club contains 13 men.
So we can sail 6 boats one time.


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Old 28-08-2015, 11:16   #2
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Re: How to practice start?

Set up a line, can use two fenders with light anchors or anything else you can agree on.

Designate a start time, use your GPS atomic clock.

Have at it.
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Old 28-08-2015, 11:19   #3
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Re: How to practice start?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Set up a line, can use two fenders with light anchors or anything else you can agree on.

Designate a start time, use your GPS atomic clock.

Have at it.

Thanks!

We have no money to buy GPS or Starting Clock...OMG


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Old 28-08-2015, 11:25   #4
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Re: How to practice start?

Make sure your starting line is perpendicular to the wind, to simulate an upwind start. I suggest making it more realistic by putting one of your people in a boat at the end of the line suggested by Stu to act as the committee boat with a stopwatch and a horn. That way, you can accurately tell the time, and if someone is over early. You can get the normal starting sequence (6 minute-5-1-Start) specified by the Rules from any sailing web page.

Ideally, you need to be going at top speed, in the right direction, on the right side of the line. In my experience, if you're not over the starting line early about 1/4 of the time as you start practicing, you just are not competing. For short races (3-5 nm), particularly for one-design dingies, the difference between winning and fourth place is under a minute. That means if you're messing around on the wrong side of the line for a minute trying to start, you have lost.
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Old 28-08-2015, 11:26   #5
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Re: How to practice start?

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Originally Posted by Kaito Matsumura View Post
Thanks!

We have no money to buy GPS or Starting Clock...OMG


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They used to call them WATCHES. Things that went on your wrist to tell the time!

Now folks use smart phones.

Or get everyone a kitchen timer or a sand clock.
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Old 28-08-2015, 11:43   #6
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Re: How to practice start?

The only way to practice STARTs is to go out and do it.


Sometimes the wind will shift, that's life.


And sometimes the race committee won't be on time, they may be early or late. Part of practicing is dealing with that.


If there is a radio, telephone, or other "time service" in your area, you can agree to use that, and each set your watches by it before heading down to the boats. There's always something, and if not, then pick some easily accessible time source and agree to use it, to set your watches, or phones, or use kitchen timers if you need to. They're all accurate enough for the job.
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Old 29-08-2015, 02:55   #7
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Re: How to practice start?

Thanks for replies of everyone.
I will try your practices tomorrow.


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Old 29-08-2015, 05:58   #8
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Re: How to practice start?

We always just had one guy give a count down and then we'd start our watches during practice regattas. We usually used a 5 minute countdown start.

As far as the start line, one side or the other is usually always favored. Even when you have a true race committee, they rarely get the line square.

That's just part of racing and up to the sailor to figure out the favored side whether it's due to a start line that isn't straight or the angle of the wind, etc.

Sometimes boats will choose clear air (away from other boats) rather than deal with the traffic on the favored side of the course


Start lines can get crowded though so you have to be patient if you find yourself in a bad spot:


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Old 29-08-2015, 08:39   #9
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Re: How to practice start?

Use your phone for the clock set the line perpendicular to the wind and have every one go.
I have been in races where thats just how the worked even sailed to an set coordinate (need a gps for that) and finished taking are own time.
Who needs a race committee. Then had beer at the dock
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Old 29-08-2015, 08:51   #10
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Re: How to practice start?

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Originally Posted by Kaito Matsumura View Post
Thanks!

We have no money to buy GPS or Starting Clock...OMG


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hell, we didn't have gps back in the sixties either when i began racing as a teen. true that you don't see many wrist watches today but my guess is you can tell the time on your cell phone.

that said, practicing starting tactics is tough to do alone. best to have a competitor. about the only thing you can practice alone is boat handling and crew coordination. if you have a buddy to practice with, set a line perpendicular to the wind as someone suggested earlier. you can shout the time to start the five minute, or whatever, prestart clock. now the racing rules are in effect. the two of you now try to maneuver for the best advantage at the start. of course you're not likely to be starting many match races. one boat on one boat, so in a fleet race position at the start is much less valuable in most cases than hitting the line on time, up to boat speed in clear air. just get on your way to the weather mark and let everybody else fight for what ever end of the line their brilliance told them was favored. once you become more experienced you can then get in their and mix it up with the best of the them but do so too early on at your peril of being tossed out of a race before the starting gun sounds. good luck and by all means, enjoy.
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Old 29-08-2015, 08:58   #11
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Re: How to practice start?

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that said, practicing starting tactics is tough to do alone. best to have a competitor. about the only thing you can practice alone is boat handling and crew coordination.
Good points, but there are two parts to starting: other boats AND timing to avoid going over early.

Until a skipper and crew get the timing thing right, other boats are pretty much irrelevant.

Practice timing to hit the line at the right time CAN be done alone.
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Old 29-08-2015, 10:26   #12
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Re: How to practice start?

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Good points, but there are two parts to starting: other boats AND timing to avoid going over early.

Until a skipper and crew get the timing thing right, other boats are pretty much irrelevant.

Practice timing to hit the line at the right time CAN be done alone.
sure, but that only involves boat handling and crew coordination as i said earlier that can be practiced alone. hell, after all these decades i still practice slowing and accelerating often just passing the jetty for a day sail. and on time is great if everything else is right but clear air and up to speed but a little late is a great start with no chance of being over early in my book for a sailor new to racing. who wins the the start of a handicapped fleet race is really not important. i look back and wonder how many times i've seen someone WIN the start and go home with a trophy outside of match racing. and even there the only thing one might bet on is rounding the weather mark first. but round second within a couple boat lengths and you got him more often than not.

my overall point being, that a sailor new to racing could spend his practice time far better by not worrying about the start until he has a bunch of races in his belly. practice tacks until you can get up to speed on the new tack as fast as possible for instance. another need for a watch. how about a tack immediately after rounding the leeward mark to break from the dirty air that is sure to be there. and we haven't even begun to discuss spinnaker handling. it's not all good boat handling but try to win without it.
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Old 29-08-2015, 12:04   #13
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Re: How to practice start?

RaceQs.com has a good blog about racing. You can view it on an iPad or computer. Make the line wide enough to accommodate all of the boats, plus extra distance depending on how uncomfortable you want the race committee to be. For 6 boats, 6 boat's widths would make them very nervous; 12 boats widths, not so nervous.
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Old 29-08-2015, 14:34   #14
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Re: How to practice start?

Here is a great YouTube series of Laser starts to watch



Peruse the YouTube site for sailboat starts and one design racing

There are some really good ones to watch.
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Old 30-08-2015, 01:52   #15
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Re: How to practice start?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaito Matsumura View Post
Hi,everyone.

I'm a beginner. Sailing with 420&FJ.
But I'm the leader of sailing club of my high school.

So I have no idea to practice "start".
Do you know how to practice "start"?

Our club contains 13 men.
So we can sail 6 boats one time.


Sent from my iPad using Cruisers Sailing Forum
The line can be made with two cheap buoys or fenders.
You may anchor them with a long piece of string (it should be longer by about 2-3 meter (~10feet) than the depth of the water where you deploy the line to allow for wave action).
The anchor will be any weight you find around (e.g. couple of bricks, paving stones or whatever that will be enough to keep the buoys in place).
As already said - in 90 deg to prevalent wind.
Length of line - combined length of all starting boats in particular run + 50% (e.g. 6 international 14 - each is 4.2m long, the line should be at least 40m (130f). This to allow a start without danger of collisions. You may start with longer line and shorten it as sailors gets more experienced.
The best is to have a boat to call the start at the proper (right) side of the line. This "race officer" will call times and premature starts.
If you have the funds it will be nice to supply this boat with a loudspeaker but it is not a 'must'.
The boat may call the start using visual signals - flags. Any two rags on a stick will do the job (you need to study the starting sequence issue).
If a boat is not available, you should agree on the sequence on the shore and agree on the signs to be used. No one will hear your shouts while sailing.
You may use a whistle or a flag on your boat to call times and orders to regroup at the line.
Normal watches will do the job. Better - watches with countdown functions. Any smartphone will have these, just take care to keep the smartphones dry and safe (the teams may purchase for a few $ aquapacks or similar bags).
Start reading racing related info on the web. There is much to a proper start, whole books have been written on this subject.
Have fun.
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