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30 October 2003, 09:35 am
Speed Tests and Racing Underway Yesterday
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ISAF Youth Multihull Evaluation Event

Yesterday opened with rain and about 25-30 knots, although once the morning briefing had been completed the wind had decreased to 15 knots.
Two speed tests were successfully completed with the Stream and the Hobie 16 original showing good upwind pace. Downwind the Hobie 16 was eclipsed by the more modern speedsters with the Booster and the Stream showing the way.

Once the speed tests had been completed, one short race was started in a 10-15 knot westerly breeze. The Stream and the Hobie Max led off the line with most of the boats showing a similar pace in the slightly lighter breezes. At the top mark it was the Stream followed by the Hobie 16 original. The Dart 16 was close behind with the Booster, Hobie 16 Race and the Hobie Max. Downwind the Hobie 16 was outclassed as all of the other boats beat it to the bottom mark. The Stream continued to lead the race with the Hobie Max taking second and the Dart 16 third.

In the afternoon, the expected heavy winds swept through the Bay of Quiberon just as the fleet were setting out for the afternoon session. A squall of 40 knots hit the fleet with every boat capsizing within 30 seconds of each other. With safety in mind, racing was abandoned for the rest of the day with some of the more experienced crews opting for some free-sailing in the afternoon.

Early feelings are that the majority of the boats are of the same speed, with the Stream showing good pace in the medium breezes. However, in yesterday's conditions the Stream was somewhat disadvantaged once the heavy winds came in, when it quickly became too powerful.

In addition to the on the water evaluation, yesterday also saw the Evaluation Panel holding meetings with the Nacra and Hobie Cat representatives.

Today, the forecast is for 20-30 knots with the Evaluation Panel keen to carry on sailing to fully evaluate the boats.
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