Our World

Sailing update from Hyeres Regatta

We were following the Hyères Regatta to see how our Musto-sponsored athletes got on and we were pleased to receive the following update from 470 helm sailor Ben Palmer:

Hyères is our second ISAF world cup event of the year just after a hard event in Palma.  Hyères is a grade 1 event and with 107 boats entered it looked to be even harder than Palma Regatta.’

‘Day 1

Day 1 started out with a 12 knot easterly breeze with left over chop from the previous 2 days windy weather.  First race we had a great start, middle starboard end and had good speed to take us towards the left hand side which looked favoured.

We tacked 10 boat lengths from the layline looking to cross the fleet on the right hand side until the wind went right putting us right back in the pack.  The racing was incredibly tight with 30 boats coming together at the reach mark and leeward marks.  On the second beat we managed to pull back a bit to finish 29th.

We didn’t have a great start to the second race so had to work hard to find a clear lane, also we had the girls fleet just in front on their inner loop which made clear air hard to get.  We managed by going left to get to the back of the pack and over the rest of the race pull it up to 27th

We were 50th overall after the first day.

Day 2

Early start to the second day and 3 races scheduled.  The wind was light at the start so after a bit of a postponement we went sailing.  The wind was coming off the land so was shifty and gusty flicking between valleys and round a headland.

We started the first race below the bunch and managed to pull out ahead and on a left shift tack and cross boats.  We just missed a lane to get all the way over to the right hand side and the wind did a 40 degree right shift to a SE sea breeze direction which put us into the back of the fleet.  Over the next downwind and upwind we managed to pull it back to a 29th

Second race was in a sea breeze starting, clear air and boat speed was the key of this race. We started in the middle of the line and managed to get an ok start and hold our lane.  A few boats crossed us from the port end but we got clear air on the left hand side. 

A little left shift helped us into the top mark in the 20s.  We managed to pull a few places over the next part of the race and after a few boats were black flagged came 14th in that race.

The third race was in the same conditions.  We had a hard start but managed to hang on until we got to the left hand side and could get a lane back.  The whole fleet came together at the windward mark and we had a bit of an incident after a French boat got stuck on the mark.

We managed on the second beat to get space and nice lift on the left hand side to come 22nd.

Overall we were 50th and happy with our day’s work.’

Sailing downwind at Hyères

‘Day 3

1 race needed to finish qualifying.  There was no wind for most of the morning so we were postponed until 1 o’clock.  We had a light SW breeze slightly more pressure on the right.  We had a good start at the starboard end and managed to get a lane out right.

We lost out a little when the boats came together at the top mark but rounded in the late 20s.  The fleet went high on the hoist so the people behind went low causing the whole fleet to be in a line.  We managed to keep our clear air on the right hand side and keep away from the rest of the fleet.

Over the next part of the race we kept our position and managed to take a few boats including Nick Rogers on the last leeward mark coming 24th in that race.  We qualified for gold fleet in 50th place which we were happy with as the racing and points were so tight.

Day 4

First day of Gold fleet which was arguably the hardest fleet in the world as no key players were missing.  Day started off with a light NE breeze.  The weather forecast was indicating postponement however after no word from the race office we launched into a very light breeze.

The rest of the ODS team launched 30 minutes later after difficulties which meant we got picked up on a tow 40 minutes later and only arrived to the race course after the start had gone.  We tried our best to get back into the race but only managed to get back to 52nd.  Second race we didn’t have a great start and got rolled, but managed after lots of tacks to get a lane out to the left hand side which looked slightly favoured.

A left shift happened and we managed to round the top mark in 23rd which we held to the finish.  We had moved up to 47th overall.’

Ben Palmer and Konrad Weaver

‘Day 5

Last day of gold fleet once again had a light Easterly breeze.  We started the first race well, forcing the Olympic Gold medallist to tack off straight away.  We held our lane out to the favoured left hand side.  We came into the windward mark in the late teens and held our position to come 18th.

The second race didn’t start quite as well we got forced to tack out and find another lane.  We rounded the windward mark in the late 30s and went for the low hoist on the reach but got taken high into the boats above so lost out a lot.  On the second beat we managed to claw back to 38th but lost 10 places on the last downwind and leeward mark.

We came 46th overall.  We were very happy with our result as we feel that our hard winter’s training is paying off and this fleet was the hardest fleet in world.  We have come on a lot in the light wind sea breeze conditions and learnt even more from this event.

I really enjoyed the tight racing as a result we are looking forward to our next regatta which is Sail for Gold on 6June.’

Share this:
  • Andy Groves says:

    Please pass my congratualtions on to Ben. Good to see him doing well in this competitive fleet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

7 + five =

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Thank you for submitting your email
Continue Shopping