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Saturday, 25 Nov 2017
Time: 07:00 am - 02:00 pm
Location: Queenscliff

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Time: 09:00 am - 05:00 pm
Location: Queenscliff

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Time: 10:30 - 17:00
Location: Station Pier

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Location: Portsea Pier

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Time: 0:00 - 0:00
Location: Portsea Pier

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Time: 08:15 am - 05:00 pm
Location: Wesley College

Sunday, 4 Mar 2018
Time: 8:15 - 17:00
Location: Wesley College

Safety is our focus, safety related news articles are shown below.

Safety is embraced and encouraged before and during sailing events.  It is fundamental to our training, our racing and culture.

 

ORCV Safety and Training


Gybing in heavy airs.

 

Tony Bull from Ullman Sails Geelong offers some advice on one of the most crucial manoeuvres in racing - the gybe in a breeze. If you weren't around, Tony was behind the helm of eXtasea when they were barrelling up the West Channel in the recent M2AB (not) race, which you can watch on video, HERE. This is what he offers on the one thing bound to get your attention and brain thinking about things going on up above and down below from you and far less about how cold and wet you might be!!!

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Tony behind the helm and the newly crowned (again) Offshore Champion crew from eXtasea.

It is justifiably the most harrowing manoeuvre to undertake on a yacht. A lot can and often does go wrong. Anecdotes and imagery abound of horrendous wipe-outs and roundups from gybes gone awry on windy days. No wonder so many sailors approach it with trepidation.

Every sailor of any experience has been involved in these mishaps – they are an everyday facet of sailing. But there are a few rules that can make it a lot more feasible to perform these gybes with a strong chance of success. There are two components in gybing a boat – changing the course and transferring the sails from one side of the boat to the other. It is a reasonably tricky manoeuvre in its own right, but can become incredibly difficult with the strong wind factor placing so much extra load on the sails. Not to mention the waves making the boat a much more unstable platform to perform on.

Symmetric spinnakers

With Symmetric spinnaker the gybe is made easier if the spinnaker is kept flying right through the process. If it collapses and resets, the extra impact of the spinnaker popping when resetting can really make things awkward mid- or post-gybe. So it is imperative the helm and the spinnaker trimmer keep the sail stable right through the gybe. It amazes me the number of helmsmen who just turn the boat with scant regard for the flying of the sail and expect the trimmer(s) to be able to cope. Both need to keep an eye on the spinnaker as much as possible – the trimmer to keep it flying and the helm controlling the turn to make it as easy as possible for the trimmer to do so.

If the spinnaker remains full during the whole process then the chance of it being successful are greatly enhanced. A common mistake is to be overly concerned about the spinnaker getting away and as a result being sheeted on too tight to keep it close to boat. This makes it harder to fly and if it is sheeted on too much the sail will wrap around the forestay or get blown between the mast and forestay on the wrong side. When I am the spinnaker trimmer, I like to take the sheets into the bow and make a mark on them that I can refer to from my normal position. If I have the sheet eased out to close to this point as we gybe, I know the forestay will not hook up the spinnaker as we change course.

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This is what Tony is trying to help you avoid!

Asymmetric spinnaker

With an asymmetric spinnaker it is a completely different kettle of fish. We actually have to collapse the spinnaker and pull it inside-out to reset on the other gybe. On heavy days make sure you run the sheets on the spinnaker with the lazy sheet run around the outside of the spinnaker luff rather than in between the spinnaker luff and forestay. This outside gybe will reduce the chances of the spinnaker catching and semi setting mid-gybe, causing an unwanted load-up on the helm. Once again it is imperative that the sheet is eased off to a point where it will not catch on the forestay as you swing the boat.

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Hhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmm! Whenever you're ready, Scotty!!!


Go Fast

In strong winds it is always much easier to gybe when you are at maximum speed, preferably surfing down a wave. This is when the apparent wind in the sails is at its least and therefore reduces the load. This makes it a lot easier to manhandle them from one gybe to another. So time your gybe for this, get on a big wave and as you race down it the reduced load will help enormously. If you do slow down as you begin to gybe, don’t go through with it. Wait until a more appropriate time.

Mainsail

 The single biggest problem with heavy air gybing is invariably getting the mainsail across from side to side. It is a big sail with a lot of load and it can take a huge amount of effort. There is no easy way. To winch it on means the helm will load up and threaten to broach the boat. Doing the gybe at high speed does help a lot and some sportsboats or high performance boats can make it a simple, one-handed flick through as the sail loses its apparent wind. But on most reasonable-size boats it may take a few extra people (and strong ones at that) to haul it in and throw it across. Once the sail has gone past centre it is very important to ease it out as quickly as possible to unload the helm.

Always go into the gybe with your vang pulled on – you want the sail to swing across the boat like a big barn door in one motion. To have no vang on and a lot of twist in the mainsail means the bottom will gybe before the top and completely throw the boat around. This split-loading can also have a catastrophic effect on the sail, not to mention the rig!

Once the gybe has been completed it is a good time to ease the vang to keep the boat on its feet. The sheer weight and impetus of the mainsail crossing the boat is the majorfactor in the boat rounding up or broaching. So a quick vang ease to depower post-gybe will help lessen this effect and keep the boom out of the water if the boat does fall over. On boats that have limited crew numbers it is a good idea to use your resources to gybe the main first and then gybe the spinnaker. This is popular in three man keelboats and works very well in the really big winds where two men are needed to get the main across.

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That main is going to go with one hell of a bang.
Remember the adage - Why do that call it a boom? Because that's the sound it makes when it hits your head!!!!

Steering

The steerer is a key person in a gybe. It is extremely important to keep the boat level, and the helmsman will have to be right on his game as the crew are trying to get through the gybing procedure. As I stated earlier, the impact of the main being thrown across is usually what causes the wipe-out. To negate this it is important to steer in an S curve as you go through the gybe. Turn the boat into the gybe, but as the boom passes over your head and the mainsheet is being dumped on the new angle, steer away back downwind to unload the rig and keep the yacht level. Your course through the water should resemble a shallow S.

On an asymmetric boat this is more pronounced. The steerer will have to sail a bit higher out of the gybe as he will have to help reset the spinnaker by making sure the course is high enough to catch the wind, but on a windy day it will load up quickly. So be ready to bear away as soon as it sets. The trimmer will need to throw the sheet off quickly as well to enable this. Remember the boat will be a lot easier to steer keeping the spinnaker in front of the boat and not to one side causing unbalance, so keep steering under it. 

Be Prudent

You are steering into a gybe and the boat is rolling to weather, the boom is cocked pointing skyward and you can tell it will get ugly if you go through with the gybe. Pull out, even if you are trying to round a mark. Try again when you are under control or, if you can’t see it happening at all, then drop the spinnaker and complete the gybe or even “granny” tack. It can take a long time to recover from a botched gybe in heavy airs so be sensible and take the course of least potential loss. An out of control gybe can be very dangerous to your crew.

Recovery

When you have been wiped out gybing (it will still happen occasionally despite all your precautions) concentrate on getting back on your feet in methodical fashion. Don’t hold the helm in full lock tugging at it to get it back under control; you are simply stalling the boat. You need to get water flowing over the rudder to regain control, so hold the helm in the centre and wait for the boat to semi-right itself. Once it does this it will be easier to get steerage and bear away.

If the spinnaker is flapping in the wind and won’t let the boat right itself, it will need to be dropped. You may have to fire the brace on a symmetric or the tackline on an asymmetric. In extreme conditions, ease some halyard as well. Make sure you have no knots in the sheets as they may need to run fully out in order to haul in the spinnaker. It can have a lot of load on it and be hard to recover.

So to gybe successfully in heavy winds, you need to make sure you are going fast down a wave if possible, keep the boat flat, the vang on hard through the gybe and eased immediately after, be ready to steer back down as the gybe is finished, and all the while keep control of your spinnaker by flying it out in front of the boat and not to one side. Easy!

Obviously the key to mastering the technique is practice – make sure you get out there and put yourself through the paces. The skills will come and you will learn a lot about the limitations of your own boat and when it is plausible to gybe. Maybe the nature of your boat will require a conservative approach, but more likely you will find yourself comfortable with gybing in strong winds. You will never know unless you incorporate it into your training.

There is a great deal of satisfaction in really nailing gybe after gybe in conditions where others around you are struggling.

 

Many thanks to Tony for preparing this material for us...

 

 

© John Curnow, ORCV Media

Please contact me for re-issue rights.

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Tony Bull runs the
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June 5 First Aid class underway.

 

It used to be a two-day course, but the Apply First Aid with a Yachting Focus course conducted by the ORCV and Benchmarque offers a distinct set of advantages over other courses in the marketplace. Not the least of which is you get to do a day's homework at your pace before showing up to Melbourne High School, which is the images below!

So if you're there doing it, I guess pay attention and also hope you have got no less than 45 out of 50 for the Written Assessment in the Pre-Course Workbook and then be assessed as Competent in the Practical Skills Assessment throughout the designated classroom day. You'll be then qualified as the one of two per crew required for Cat1 or one for Cat2.

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The Infant, Child and Adult CPR mannequins.

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Receiving instruction on Treating Spinal Injuries - four person log roll.

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Go HERE to read the whole overview and outline of the Apply First Aid course.



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ORCV Safety and Training


Weather Course - June 25 & 26, 2011.

 

The one constant that's always changing - you NEED to know the weather! No matter whether you're an old sea dog or a newbie, the weather will treat you the same. The ORCV leads the way with training for all offshore racers and cruisers. The upcoming Weather Course is just one such example. The key educator will be the informative and entertaining Kenn Batt. Kenn grew up around yachts in Tasmania and has completed many significant ocean races. Kenn's name pops up at several yachting events around Australia and as a job he works for the BoM as a Senior Bureau Officer for the Tasmania/Antartic Region, based out of Hobart (so he knows his stuff and the area, too).

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There are three ways to get some of his expertise:
1. All About The Weather. This is the basic understanding of weather and it will run for one day on Saturday 25/6/11 at a cost of $85.00 for financial ORCV members and $100 for non-members and non-financial members.
2. Yet More Weather. This is all about advanced weather understanding, including long distance ocean racing and tropics. It too runs for one day on Sunday 26/6/11 at a cost of $85.00 for financial ORCV members and $100 for non-members and non-financial members.
3. From Becalmed to Force 12. The complete synoptic picture, it combines both the Basic and Advanced curriculum over both days at a cost of $150.00 for financial ORCV members and $180 for non-members and non-financial members.


Go HERE now to read the outline and more importantly, get the form!!!

 

 

© John Curnow, ORCV Media

Please contact me for re-issue rights.

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First Aid for June 5, 2011.

 

Applying First Aid with a Yachting Focus is on this Sunday, June 5. You can still be a part of it and either keep your spot in your crew or make yourself even more indispensable, as a result!

The thing is, there's not too many times when it all goes a little sideways and you don't need some urgent help. Fingers, abdominal issues, eyes, concussion and split skin seem to be perennial favourites. Wouldn't you like to be in a position to help? I was lucky enough to spend a lot of time sailing with doctors and nurses around, so fortunately, I cannot speak from direct knowledge on this one, but I would think having more than one great first-aider in the crew would be very cool, indeed. (Cat2 requires one soul per crew to be qualified. Cat1 is two. (- and one one was a horse, Basil Brush.)

So here's the deal. There are a couple of spots still available for both the CPR annual update and also the entire course. It costs $190 or 220 per person, depending on your status with the ORCV and the update is just $80 or $90.

 

Go HERE now to read the outline and more importantly, get the form!!!


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You know, the more I think about it, the more I realise how lucky I was to be blessed with such great fellow crewmembers!!! (And many thanks to you, my friends). Anyway, do it for yourself, your friends and your family.

 

 

© John Curnow, ORCV Media

Please contact me for re-issue rights.

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New Tassie Weather.

 

No. The Apple Isle has not upped anchor and gone to the top of Cape York. The BoM has very kindly sent out a bulletin relating to the new forecasting sysytem they have deployed and it has some cool things about waves and the like. So whilst no on would really want to be heading there right now, in just a few months we are going back, yet again, so this may prove to be beneficial...

The Tasmanian arm of the Bureau advises, "There are major changes to marine forecast and warnings that will occur in the last few days of June." So don't say you were not told.

Inside the document listed below, you'll get to see what all this means.

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And this...


Go HERE to get the latest information from the BoM in Tassie.


Right Oh. Winter Series coming up, but before that, there's the First Aid Course on June 5 and in between the two is the Australian Women's Keelboat Regatta at the Squadron from June 11 to 13.

 

Racing, racing, racing...


 

© John Curnow, ORCV Media

Please contact me for re-issue rights.

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