Today I sailed the pole race from Manly sailing club which is a seven mile race from Beach to Pole and return.
On the first short reach I was worried I had the battens too tight as there wasn't much wind and the top batten didn't pop, but with a bit of breeze the boat very quickly accelerated and with a bit of centreboard up the TIWAL got on the plane. I held onto the Zephyrs for a while, but in the light patches they pulled away from me.
Around the first Mark then upwind for 3 1/2 miles sailing in 6-10 knots. I had the small sail on and I had plenty of power. I was using the controls through the puffs; playing with the outhaul, vang and the cunningham. I sailed towards the shore hoping to find some extra breeze there to make up some ground on the Zephyrs but it was a no go. It looked nice there - flat water but not as much wind. It was a warm, humid NWer with rain clouds that didnt produce breeze, only seemed to suck it away. It was one of those few occasions when heading to the shore wasnt the best course. Of course the local Zephyr sailors seemed to know this - should have followed them!
Downwind, unfortunately the wind died to 5 knots so the TIWAL wasnt given the chance to show its lightweight speed but it was pleasing that with each small puff there was a pleasant humming noise and slight vibration as the boat got on the plane.
Overall, it was good sailing the boat with plenty of power. I put plenty of shape in the battens before I left the shore which was perfect for the conditions. The adjustable battens will provide me with a bit of learning as I have never played with batten shape like this before.
I am a New Zealand sailor who learned to sail in the beautiful Malborough Sounds and then went onto represent NZ at the 2000 Olympics.