Mussanah Race Week

Mussanah Race Week, 16.-24.1.2015

Straight after the National Regatta at DOSC I went to the airport to catch a flight to Muscat. By chance it was the same flight the Danish team was on… That was about it with luck, after a delay we also had to missing suitcases from a Danish family in Muscat… All this meant we were in bed slightly later than anticipated…

After some hours of well deserved sleep  we were ready to go again on Sunday morning. First thing on the list was sorting out the charter boats and rigging the sails which was plenty of work for the morning. While the kids sorted out the Optimists I arranged for a rib for the next couple days. In the mean time Walter from Finland did the same independently.
After lunch we went on the water to test the set up and to get the Danish (who haven’t been sailing much in winter) up to speed again. At the end of the day we joined the NOR team for a race.

Monday was light wind. So we started by having a look at the sail set up and the effect of various set up changes on the sail shape. Once the wind picked up enough to go sailing we went out and worked on acceleration and holding the line after the start and some mark rounding. Later on we did some test races with the international sailors – quite a big group and a nice tune up for the races to come. By Monday evening late arrival Rebekka has sorted her boat out as well and all the DEN sailors were race ready.
Last task for me was to organize the boats for the DOSC kids. With Leo’s help that was also quickly done.

Tuesday was already the last preparation day with a practice race in the afternoon. But the morning started with a great rule 42 seminar organized by the japanese Jury. Impressive how things look differently if you explain them on a real opti on some bean bags. It must have worked on the kids too because there weren’t too many yellow flags from the jury later on during the races.
In the afternoon we joined the practice race to get a feeling for the race management. Since there was only one race and the wind picked up nicely I decided to stay out and run an exercise on wind shifts.
It was quite late by the time we were back in and most DOSC sailors have arrived and set up the boats while I was out. We were ready in no time for the races on Wednesday. Well the kids were ready but not my rib… I had to hand over mine to the race committee and got another one.

In order to have the best coaching for everyone I cooperated with René and Kostas. Former took the 4,7 under his wings and the later looked after Julius on the radial. On Wednesday morning I had the first combined briefing with Walter, the Danish and the DOSC kids. We went over the sailing instructions and had a look at the game plan of the day.
As expected Marina run three races quite quick back to back – very professional And also as expected the level was quite high. The first half of each start group was quite a fight to get into and then hold the position as well.
Some kids could show their best sailing whereas others struggled a bit to come up to speed. Generally a good first day in light wind of 6 to 12knots.

The second day will already be the last day of the qualifier. So briefing was about playing it safe and sail smart and consistent. Since speeding up before the gun was an issue with almost all the sailors, this was a topic too.
General the day went really well and some kids beefed it up quite big. In the end, after 6 races and one discard, we had 6 sailors (Walter, JC, Emil, Rebekka, Charlotte, Kamille) in gold and 7 sailors (Isaac, Noah, Mathilde, Filippa, Luke, Max and Athos) in silver. Unfortunately Isaac missed gold by one place and Filippa scored a OCS in the last race, throwing her back to silver.

On the third day of racing, first day of finals we changed the approach a bit. Since this was a training regatta for everyone and the results would not have an influence I told the kids to sail accordingly. The ones who do not have a really high discard yet should really go for it. the ones with good positions I pushed to don’t let it be at it but to try to climb even higher and the one somewhere in the middle I advised to try something different they usually would not in a race.
With the finals set up the kids got a big eager on the start as well. Gold did have one general recall with about 10 boats out and silver had half the fleet being over the line and bfd’. Unfortunately Rebekka and Filippa got caught as well.
In the end we had 3 races in for gold and 2 for silver.
By the end of the day we actually had some kids managing to climb further up (Emil, JC and Walter), others holding the preassure (Isaac still leading silver) and some suffering from letters and/or bad results.

Marina managed three more races for both groups on the last day. The day was yet again mixed (Filippa and Isaac scoring BFD’s) and fatigue settling in having some kids collecting points.
In the end there were quite a lot of success stories nevertheless. Walter managed his personal goal as best FIN, JC kept his place from the day before, Kamille, Charlotte, Rebekka and Emil managed damage control and had solid overall results. Isaac unfortunately dropped to 4th and lost 3rd Cadeti place but it was a great learning experience to handle pressure. Noah put the icing on the cake with finishing the regatta with a bullet in the last race. Mathilde learned the value of consistency and was the 3rd DOSC boat in top 5 silver.
For Luke, Max and Athos it was a great learning experience and they managed to get into the middle third of silver group. Quite an achievement, since there were quite some kids sailing worlds and european championships in both gold and silver fleet.

As for the lasers, the competition wasn’t any easier. Strong participants from FIN, DEN, UAE and OMA were on the start line. For sure it was a great training for all three sailors. Best indication for that? All three sailors managed to get better throughout the event. On the last day top ten results were achieved and top 3 finishes wer not out of reach anymore. All three did not finish far of the top half of the fleet and with the results from the last day throughout the event the would have been easily in the top half. Work on getting into the game quicker, guys and you are up there! Super happy that the learning curve shows that neatly upward,  Marie, Ben and Julius!

To sum it up: It was a great learning experience. More pleasant for some than for others but all the experience is money in the bank and will come in handy at the next race!

Regards

Cyrill

 

vlcsnap-2015-01-26-12h58m35s44Ideal for all those who want to train at a high level during January. Perfect sailing conditions and a high level of participants make this event unique.

The regatta at the end of the week offers the possibility to use what you have learned in the clinic during the days before.

The organizers have put together an interesting package.

Interested? Send an application to coach@optimist-academy.ch

Coaching will be in German, French and English

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