Tuesday, May 26, 2009

RC 44 - Gmunden, Austria

RC 44 - Gmunden, Austria

Tomorrow will be the first day of racing for the RC44 fleet here in Gmunden. The RC44 is a relatively new class of boat designed by Russell Coutts and Andre Justin. It looks like a 1/2 scale of the America's Cup boats from 2007. But it is relatively lighter and very high performing. It planes downwind in 16 knots of wind and it is fully powered up in 7 knots upwind. It is a one design class and the boats are very high tech being built out of carbon fiber and even having a trim tab on the keel fin.

The RC 44 fleet has a circuit around Europe and the Middle East.ᅠ So far this year, the fleet has competed two events, one in Lanzarote and one Cagliari, Sardinia.

I have been asked to sail onboard Ceeref for just this regatta as the tactician, Sebastian Col is off doing one of the World Match Race Tour regattas.

The format for racing in this class is: Wednesday and Thursday Match Racing where a professional can steer the boat and Friday-Sunday is Fleet Racing and an armature must steer the boat which is usually the owner.

So we will race each other team once in a round robin over the next two days. There are some very good match racers here and I haven't match raced in a while so it will be a good challenge for me.

Gmunden in on Lake Traun. This lake is nestled at the bottom of some very high mountains. So far, two of the three days, the wind had trouble getting down to the lake with any kind of steadiness. Yesterday was a fantastic day with the wind blowing down the length of the lake due to thermal convection in the mountains at the far end of the lake. The lake is about 8 miles long and 2 miles wide. It makes for a beautiful setting. There are many summer homes here is Gmunden is just 40 minutes from Salzburg.

A big wind just blew through the town and knocked a couple of the boats off their mooring. I am told there was a bit of damage to one of them when another drifted into it.ᅠ We'll see in the morning.

It has been about 33C for the past two days but the temp is supposed to drop to 15C tomorrow.
Cayard Sailing Website