Portland Harbour, Dorset
27 September-3 October, 1997
Comments are by Robert Downhill and Dave Culp
Toastrack appeared again this year and was sailed by Sir Robert Hill. This Catapult equiped with foils has been around for some time and this shows up with the ease of rigging launching and dropping the foils into flying position. As was the case of all the foilers it was unable to get foilborne in the light winds but is never the less a delightful boat to sail. Its highest recorded speed was 6.79 knots.
Here's a page of photos of this boat, showing her both at speed and ashore, featuring close-ups of her foils retracted. This basic foil set-up is the same used by Icarus, Mayfly and a host of other boats.
Mario Capponnetto's craft was a trimaran with planing hulls and sported a standard windsurfer sail and managed only 3.17 knots maximum in the breeze. mario had to leave early and missed out on the better winds toward the end of the week.
Gilles Goarin in Rage 20 achieved 7.15 knots in a conventional catamaran with an unusual below the water line shape. Intended as a vessel for all types of sailor including handicapped its is designed to be stable but of high performance. Again we did not see its full potential at a speed of 7.15 knots. its 14 foot sister Rage 14 attained a speed of 5.29 knots. Here's a close-up of her unusual planing hull shape.
Slade Penoyre brought his Catapult inflatable catamaran to Weymouth equipped with a sitting-out/trapezeing aid in the form of a fabric covered rectangular frame of aluminium tubing looking something like a stretcher. He explained that he is developing a device to give enhanced righting moment and speed in strong winds and to be suitable for use with a wide variety of beach cat designs.
The aluminium frame can be fixed to project outboard from either hull and a crew member can either lie on the canvas covering, which is possibly more comfortable than using a trapeze, or one could possibly trapeze from the outer end. Slade's first prototype for this device appeared at Weymouth three years ago and caused some amusement being nothing more than a full length heavy duty wooden roofing ladder lashed to the foot of the mast.
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