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Posted by on Aug 17, 2009 in Sailboat Racing, UK, US | 2 comments

Video: Fiberglass Sailboats Meet Immovable Objects

Sailors in Sweden's Tjorn Runt disprove the notion that watching grass grow is more exciting than a sailboat race.

Our friends at Blur Sailing and RegattaTV sent us these videos of the action at the finish of Tjorn Runt, an annual summer event that takes a large number of sailboats in close proximity to a great many very solid bits of the planet.

Tjorn Runt winner, the J/109 Blur. Photo by Bo Bergqvist

Tjorn Runt winner, the J/109 Blur. Photo by Bo Bergqvist

The first video, while very blurry, shows some boats having more success than others threading the needle through a narrow gap in the rocks. Although it may have been low tide, I suspect that this passage will no longer be recommended for boats with deep keels. One boat offers a technique that I don’t recommend for slowing down in order to drop the spinnaker. Another shows how to use its keel as a depth sounder on both sides of the channel in one passage. Another shows in rapid succession how to hit the rocks, get clear, and recover a crewman who has fallen overboard.

This video shows an exciting sequence in which a boat with spinnaker overtakes a larger vessel at precisely the wrong moment, and neither crew is likely happy with the result. This is followed by a close call that, more happily, shows disaster narrowly averted.

By the way, Blur Sailing blogger Peter Gustafsson won his racing class as well. Good job, Peter.

—John Burnham

2 Comments

  1. JB
    Hope you saw the IOD in the beginning of the second video.

  2. I didn’t notice it before but no question the white, black, and gray spinnaker is an Int’l One-Design. I think that’s a wood one too…glad it didn’t bump the rocks.