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Lessons will be learned

zoidberg

Well-known member
Joined
12 Nov 2016
Messages
3,504
There will be much to extract from the current GGR and the tribulations of its skippers.

What might some of those lessons be, and are we likely to learn them?
 
Joined
22 Nov 2018
Messages
616
Location
Newport IoW
I am not really knowledgable to comment; but I would be interested if the experts consider that the strict rules on boat size and design, and equipment carried, actually caused any mishaps.

(Not looking to apportion blame, to anybody: the rules were clearly stated.. tho I remember the phrase "gratuitously luddite" being used..)
I wonder if the same race rules would be thought responsible to repeat, if a second or even regular event is contemplated?
 

zoidberg

Well-known member
Joined
12 Nov 2016
Messages
3,504
I've just finished re-reading Dr David Lewis' 'The Ship Would Not Travel Due West', which is his very lucid account of his participation in the first Singlehanded Transatlantic Race in 1960 - and back again - in his much smaller wooden 'Cardinal Vertue'. There were gales and storms aplenty, broken gear and chafed-through ropes, and lessons to ponder.

I'm no expert. The individuals who do this as solo skippers are, and should be heeded - but it seems clear to me that a minimum of rules is sought. These individuals know, from their own and others' accumulated experience, what is required. They also know, as do I, that a proliferation of rules, regulations and inspections does very little to make deep-water sailing 'safe'. It does, however, encourage a number of inexperienced individuals to tackle big offshore passages in the mistaken belief that 'the committee' has made the necessary decisions and that these tyros need only carry the kit listed, to 'make it through the night'. Wrong.....!

Lewis warns of the problem of barnacle infestation in the first few pages. He and others came close to running out of drinking water. He rations matches 'cos he didn't bring enough. His foul weather clothing is inadequate. The bridle for his drogue comes close to pulling the transom off. Stainless runners chafe through due to inadequate leads, threatening his mast. There are many other examples in this and the other 'classic' accounts to inform the would-be participant of 'lessons learned'.

It is not yet known what failed in 'DHL Starlight's Jordan Series Drogue, but that lead to the loss of the vessel. Certainly there is something important to glean from that, but the boat itself was in superior condition and fit, while SG herself quite clearly demonstrated a superior degree of seamanship.

It's my view that an absolute minimum of rules - solely to ensure level racing - is desirable. That puts the obligation for safety onto the participants and not the Race Committee..... and that means the participants have to learn and decide on what's needed.
 

zoidberg

Well-known member
Joined
12 Nov 2016
Messages
3,504
I'm dimly aware that question are being asked, as the GGR 'demolition derby' continues, of the choices made regarding self-steering gear... and also that some criticisms have been levied at the Wind Pilot gear and at Peter Foerthmann, the company's owner.

Now, I have no commercial involvement. I don't own one. But there are those who do, and - after thousands of ocean miles - continue to endorse and praise the things.
One example is Roger Taylor, in his brief account of his 3000nm summer voyage in Ming Ming II here at about minute 3:10.
 

Gargleblaster

Active member
Joined
16 Dec 2003
Messages
1,104
Location
Medway, Gillingham Reach
I'm dimly aware that question are being asked, as the GGR 'demolition derby' continues, of the choices made regarding self-steering gear... and also that some criticisms have been levied at the Wind Pilot gear and at Peter Foerthmann, the company's owner.

Now, I have no commercial involvement. I don't own one. But there are those who do, and - after thousands of ocean miles - continue to endorse and praise the things.
One example is Roger Taylor, in his brief account of his 3000nm summer voyage in Ming Ming II here at about minute 3:10.
I don't understand this comment about the Windpilot. My understanding was that Susie Goodall had a Monitor and that is what shows up in the pictures of her boat.
 

Pords

Member
Joined
30 Jul 2013
Messages
158
Having just finished reading Peters response to the criticisms and insinuations regarding the Windpilot. It seems to me he has done everything he can to assist in solving the problems being experienced in the GGR. It’s apparent that the main issues are from incorrect installations and understating of fine tuning. That coupled with lack of sea trails,and timely 2 way communication with Peter have led to these sailors having problems that maybe could have be avoided. When I ordered my Pacific Light from Peter this year, the communication was first class. He wanted pictures and videos to ensure I had installed correctly, and that it was performing as it should. He always responded to my emails the same day, in some cases immediately. I will continue to support the Windpilot Brand like many others.
 

Sandy

Well-known member
Joined
31 Aug 2011
Messages
15,760
Location
On the Celtic Fringe
I feel I am tip toeing on hallowed ground posting in here, but am "sort of" following the GGR as I am prepping the boat for some long distance single handed passages in the next few years.

The one thing that I feel about the GGR is they are using 50 year old designs with modern sails/rope, other equipment and skippers. Are the skippers pushing hulls faster than they are designed for?

I am surprised that the Windpilot needs so much attention from the manufacture for it to work as designed and have removed it from my list of potential equipment. Hydrovane is my current top of the list for self steering kit.
 

co256

Member
Joined
10 Jan 2009
Messages
394
Hello Sandy,

No tip toeing necessary...

I suspect that the GGR skippers are pushing as hard as they dare, particularly early on in the race when they were not nursing a damaged boat or sails etc.

In my limited experience, Navik and Windpilot, wind vanes do not appreciate being pressed by too much canvas and become increasingly “twitchy” the more you bare away from the breeze. I found a good balance off the wind by balancing the wind vane with a rudder trimmed for weather helm.

I cannot comment on the Hydrovane though they appear to be standing up well to the rigours of the Southern Ocean.

I don’t believe the problems experienced stem from any relationship between hull form and modern sails etc. I think they are racing and possibly some of the Windpilot users lacked time on the water learning about their boats, which unfortunately has had an impact on the reputation of the Windpilot which I have found to be very good.
 
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