Laser Training Center
September 2011

Some myths are repeatedly brought up by sailors from around the world who come to train in Cabarete. I decided to bust a few.

Mast rake myth: Put the lower mast in the boat, take a measuring tape from the upper aft of the mast, and measure the distance to the middle of the gunwale curve at the stern. The best measurement for speed is 382.5 cm. More or less than that, you have got yourself a very slow boat.

Truth: Lasers do have different mast rakes, and sometimes it is mind-boggling to see how big the difference is between two boats parked right next to each other. But, sailors compensate for these differences by trimming the sail differently, and in the end the best sailor wins. In the Worlds and Olympic games the sailors receive brand new boats, and can not control the rake anyway.

Laser name change myth: The Laser will no longer be called Laser, and at the same time a different boat will get the Laser name.

Truth: ILCA helped a lot to ignite this myth by asking sailors for class rules changes. But yesterday I  received a letter from Laser designer Bruce Kirby assuring me, that there is no need for class rule changes, and he reclaimed control of the design. Thus keeping the current name and design as one.

Wind strength myth: In colder weather 20 knots of wind, are stronger than 20 knots of wind in warmer weather.

Truth: I actually had a NASA rocket scientist help me on this one. His conclusion was: As the air is denser in colder weather, and assuming you hold everything else constant (i.e. sail size and sea conditions, as changes in the roughness of the water will change the boundary layer and affect the actual wind pressure on the sail), a change in temp of 5*C will bring about a 2% change in total wind energy.
So 20 knots of wind in 8*c does feel like just 19 knots in 25* c.

The Perfect hiking position.
 One more view of perfect hiking. We can not stress enough how important hiking efficiently is for upwind speed. Straight legs, shoulders out, hand and arms as far out of the boat as you can. 
Rulo's Tip of the Month.
This month tip busts another myth from the 80's. In winds over 25 knots: release the vang before tacking, then tighten it again on the new tack. To improve your tacks in strong winds..

Winter 2012. Bring your buddies and create your own group.
It’s time to book the best airfare, get the best room in the hotel of your choice , and commit to a training session at the Laser Training Center.  If you want to enjoy a Caribbean winter holiday with your Laser buddies, send us dates that fit  best, and enjoy special group rates.

Or join us for one of these planned activities:
January 3rd-6th, 2012
Up, down, and around clinic.
January 8-11. 2012
Pre Race clinic.
January 13-14-15, 2012
10th Caribbean Laser Midwinter Regatta.
January 17-20, 2012
Pre Brisbane Master Worlds Clinic, Cabarete.
January 21, 2012
King of the Bay Regatta.

Irish sailor Claudine Murphy joins the coaching staff.
Claudine represented Ireland in the Laser Radial Class, and  competed in Senior World and European Championships 2005-2009. Since 2005 she has also been a sailing coach and senior instructor for youth division and adult sailing programs. With Claudine’s help we plan to start an Opti program, and increase coaching sessions to intermediate and beginner sailors. Claudine will assist Rulo in the high performance clinics.

Laser Training Center, Cabarete