We’ve all capsized, and can all get the boat up ok. But when you are racing, time is of the essance. If during your capsize, you wonder why the boat comes upright then capsizes again, or it turtles, then there is something you are doing wrong (besides capsizing in the first place). If you are doing it the RYA method, then stop! Just like when you pass your driving test – once you have passed then you really start to learn to drive! Read the tips and routines below and work out for yourself if your method is quickest. The methods below pressume the boat capsized with the kite up.
The main thing is to get one of you on the board a.s.a.p. this stops the boat fully turtling. Doesn’t matter whether it is the crew or the helm that gets on the board, so long as one of you does. Even if you are too light to bring the boat upright by yourself, your weight should be sufficient to hold the boat half way and stop it turtling. You’ll find that usually one of you ends up in the water, the other ends up scrambling over the top before the mast hits the water. If no one gets over the top, you should make sure you drop into the water and not try and hold yourself out by holding onto the boat high up. This only encourages the boat to turtle. One of you gets onto the board somehow, doesn’t matter who, whilst the other is left to do the jobs which are as follows;
- Main off
- Jib Off
- Kicker off (Release the tension and re cleat to stop the boom falling off)
- Kite down (If wind speed force 4+ or total crew weight = light)
The person on the board holds the rightinglines, which have been fitted, and starts to pull the boat up so the mast is just out of the water. When when told to do so by the person in the water, the boat is fully righted. Presuming the mast is still pointing downwind, as the boat comes upright, the person in the water starts to get scooped up, When the boat gets to a certain point, the water person can stand up and lean over the high side of the hull to assist the righting of the boat. Also the daggerboard person can cock a leg over the top on climb in as the boat comes upright. When the boat is upright, first one in grabs the tiller and regains control. Get back into position, and sort the sails and kicker out. Bear away and get the kite back up and off you go.
From the time the mast hits the water, to getting the boat back upright with the kite back up and the boat back underway, can be done, if all goes according to plan, in about 1 minute!