Between Giants (Lago 26 Foils) – Candidate Sailing Stories – Episode 14


To make the ‘Lago 26 Foils’ fly was a struggle from the start, but finally we are ready for the first regatta. Less than 12 hours away the crew is finishing their last preparations before the race. Nobody seems rested the next day. Come on guys, hurry up. There is a sail, over there is a bucket. We take the bucket with us? Moritz, what’s the bucket for? What?
What’s the bucket for? To take a dump.
Nice… The next morning, the Lago26 Foils is waiting eagerly for its passengers. In less than an hour the crew wants to race against the best boats on the lake to finally know how fast they really are. After a few hours of sleep the crew meets at the breakfast table. You had a coffee already, Moritz? Everything will be fine. Nothing can go wrong if you raise a cup of coffee. The only thing that is missing, is wind. I am checking the weather, unfortunately, there won’t be much wind, but some storms might appear which we need to look out for. That could bring some wind. The forecast says the north-east wind will shift to south and then might decrease a lot which isn’t that bad for us but all we can do is wait. During the night is was raining luckily we kept all our stuff outside so everything is pretty wet now. A great refreshment before the race. Yesterday we saw that we have still some issues with the mast. We should get a new mast pretty soon because we are repairing it very often. At high speed (22 knots) it still doesn’t look very stable so for this regatta we don’t want to push things too much. Anyways the wind will tell if we go hard or not. With less wind we should be on the safe side. That day more than 600 boats cruise to the starting line. All of them want to get the ‘Blue Ribbon’ with decorates the mast as a sign for the fastest boat. Roland Duller, is taking care of the crew. The distance between the start and the finish line is 160 km. The catamaran ‘fifty-fifty’ holds the record for this race with 7 hours and 13 minutes. With this wind this record can’t be broken today. A start from the first row seems impossible. Bigger boats with bigger sails pass us until we cannot see who is leading. In previous training sessions the crew proved that they can handle a lot of wind. Today patience is key. After hours of racing the wind dies. After 6,5 – 7 hours of racing we covered only a third of the distance. Unfortunately we are somewhere in the middle there are many boats around us and we are not where we wanted to be. We have light wind conditions and we are stuck for the third time now. The start didn’t work as planned, because with a boat like ours we had to start with the fast, big boats so we had to choose the left side. The slower boats could pick the right side and get more pressure. The big catamarans around us were catching the wind and left us behind. Here and there it didn’t look so bad and we thought we could catch up but again we got stuck in no wind. Our only hope is that the storm back there will bring something to push us forward because otherwise, this won’t end so well. We prepared some liquid food because we didn’t expect to have time to eat a sandwich on a foiling ship. But we didn’t think this through. Now a sandwich would actually be really good. Your wish is our command. The motorboat is better prepared and shares some food. Delicious, isn’t it? It looks like we will race through the night. We installed lights on the front and on the back. These are mandatory at night. Additionally we have head torches too. To be able to work. That’s the only big difference. All around the lake, the boats are stuck like we are. Not what the crew was hoping for as a debut for their first regatta. As we rush to the team to bring more food they have made a decision. It is 8 o’clock in the evening we are sailing since 9 o’clock in the morning and now the situation is that we give up. There is absolutely no wind expected during the night and we didn’t come very far. But we gained some experience and it was exciting. Simply wasn’t our day. We would have needed a little bit more wind to use our strength (the foils) Not a perfect sailing day for us, but a perfect background. As you can see, we still have some daylight not because we are done already. It’s the opposite. We learned a lot, gained experience yeah, we have some potential, we know that. In Austria you say: ‘Let’s say nothing happend.’ The crew came only half way, but is happy that they were a part of the race. This for sure wasn’t their last regatta. Basically we spent 11 hours together on the boat for the first time. Tthat’s more time than we spent on the boat in the last months in total. I have to say that we learned a lot. It was first time to compete against other boats at a regatta against similar boats. We saw that we still have lots of work to do and yeah, of course we will keep going. Hopefully next year, we can tell a different story, right? Yeah, with a little bit more wind. We have to admit, that it is the first time we didn’t break anything actually everything was working fine but still the end was a little disapointing. We were going not bad a few times but with nearly no wind we got stuck too often. Let’s call it a day, how about a beer? Well, there are better debuts, but everyone had some fun. Thanks for watching. See the next episode in two weeks.

One thought on “Between Giants (Lago 26 Foils) – Candidate Sailing Stories – Episode 14

  1. Wie immer tolle Bilder und gutes Storytelling! Hätte mich gefreut euch am Gardasee vorbeifoilen zu sehen. Ich wünsche euch bei dem Projekt weiterhin viel Erfolg und lassts euch von ein paar Mastbrüchen nicht unterkriegen!

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