Monday, November 25, 2013

Fizz Cup Qualifications

There was some serious fizzin going on in the Blake Sea this last weekend. The Fizz Cup 2013 Qualifications was held, and from what I saw and heard, it was a pretty good sailing weekend. Regretfully, I was only able to watch group 1, but the results of all three groups are available on the official Fizz Cup 2013 site. (Link at the bottom).
Ralf crosses first
The shot above shows what we saw most of the time in group 1. Ralf80 Titanium was just faster. He had one race with a crash, but other than that, his results are pretty convincing: Four firsts and a DNF. From the spectator platform it looked pretty simple. Ralf80 pinched better and he had better boatspeed. That's hard to beat.
The spectator platform
Here's one of the spectator platforms. This one is located behind the startline. There was another one to the south (right on the picture), and there was yet another one up at the top mark. The spectator platforms were very nice. Dicely decorated with flags, giant charts of the two qual courses and ofcourse the Fizz Cup 2013 trophies. The only thing missing was a beer dispenser in the corner; To set the mood...
Here's a shot right after the start. Ralf80 wasn't always the first to cross the line, but if you have a boatspeed advantage that's really not important. In a fleet this small you can always find clean air and simply outspeed the others.

The courses were not straight up/downs. They both had a little twist, but they were pretty straight forward to sail. No need for a navigator. That would be fun though. Perhaps that's a future thing to do: Set up a course that's so complicated you need a navigator. The courses used in the qualifications are avaible at official site, and if you chech the results page, you will see lap and course times;
The SL coastguard was in place with numerous helicopters and surface ship,. Dunno if they have subs. I never saw a SLCG sub. Anyway, there were few problems with "moving obstacles" on the course, but I did snap this picture in the first round. This guy crossed the course at full speed and cut the fleet in halfs. Not a pretty sight. Sadly he was moving so fast I couldn't catch his name.
Ralf in the fast lane
Something else was moving fast. Here's another shot right after the start. Again, Ralf80 is in the fast lane. Slightly ahead and in a very good position. Iteke up there to windward will have a hard time hanging on. Not only is there the psych-factor, but she absolutely needs to keep pinching. The Fizz has windbend like a real boat, so if she sails just a little bit lower for a few seconds she will be in trouble.
Bottom mark
That's probably what happened. She fell down into the windbend and it was game over. Here's a shot of the bottom mark rounding. Iteke rounds second, but Ralf80 is already far ahead, sailing his own race at his own pace, completely free to choose whichever path he finds optimal.
Iteke wins the start
However, Iteke did make a couple of really good starts, and if she finds just a little bit more speed, she will be a factor in the finals. Here's a great shot of Iteke starting first. Not that you can see the others. They must have lost their nerve. They're simply not there.
The others try to catch up
Here are the other boats crossing seconds later. Most of them. The last boat was further away from the line. So, not only did Iteke win the start. With a positioned like that she should be in total control of he race and in particular of Ralf80. He is sailing the red boat slightly behind and to leeward. A few starts like that and a bit more boat speed, and those final races will be very exciting to watch.

The other two groups? I didn't watch them, but from the results it seems they also had one dominating boat. I guess someone will be out looking for speed these next few weeks. This is regular sailboat racing; Great sailing and suer duperly organized by Silber and her crew. The only thing missing is the seaspray.

Link to the official Fizz Cup 2013 site.


  1. Hi Noodle :)
    The article is great, and I personally love the picture of Iteke winning the start. It shows what huge delevopment sailors have made during the last weeks who are still new with the Flying Fizz.
    Concerning the beer dispenser: not kidding, I had that in mind but finally thought, it might be too much maybe. Well.. I'll rez it for the finals, promised ;)
    *hugs* from Silber

  2. I like!. Btw, what happened here (Ralf vs. Iteke) has nothing to do with bad air / wind blending. Ralf sails closer to wind, while maintaining a good speed (planning), and thus sail a better course with less distance. It is obvious on video, especially in race 1 (Kris won the start and was last at the top mark for that same reason), and in this race # 2.

    1. Right Bea! Ralf was better on upwind. Faster and higher. Nevertheless Iteke was - several times - in a controlling position. She just wasn't able to execute and take advantage of that position as any matchracer would have.


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