I want to race; now what?

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I want to race; now what?

Postby JRaut » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:21 pm

I guess this is a good first topic for a brand new forum page. Or maybe it should go on the noob page. Or maybe a new forum page altogether - the "noob racer" forum.

I've been racing sailboats (Lasers on up to J/120s) for a few years and I still get out once or twice a week to race. This is my first kiting season, but I've been getting out almost every day that I'm not on a boat, so I'm progressing nicely . I usually kite at TP/Emery Pt./Racetrack, I get upwind and stay upwind easily, I have been recently working on gybing a directional, etc.

I usually bring my phone with me to take GPS tracks (I highly recommend using MapMyTracks.com) and have been monitoring how well I go upwind, estimating my VMG, estimating upwind angles, and the like. At my best and on my directional, I can only make about 70 degrees off the wind (20 degrees above a beam reach) and can make up to about 2 kts VMG. I've read that the good racers make up to about 10 kts VMG. I blame a lot of that on not having a race board. Should I share in more of the blame?

So my main question is: what is the next step?

Do I go out and buy a race board? Do I go out and get a new quiver of "race" kites? Do I walk in to St. Francis Yacht Club and sign up for the next race and get my ass handed to me? Or do I just keep practicing getting upwind faster and more efficiently on my directional? I notice I can go much, much faster and seem to get upwind better if I keep my board flatter and use the fins to steer upwind (as opposed to driving the rail underwater and creating a lot of drag). Though that makes the little muscle on the tops of my feet really sore. I imagine a race board would help with that.

Any thoughts or insights would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers SS$$
J
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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby Greg » Fri Aug 10, 2012 6:37 am

get a used race board and practice tell your bored SILLY=
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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby kitenaked » Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:01 am

I have an old race board if you are interested.

Its not todays technology, but a place to start...

Pm me if interested.
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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby NCKite_Ryder » Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:56 am

Is there a surfboard class?
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Re: Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby kitenaked » Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:30 am

NCKite_Ryder wrote:Is there a surfboard class?


I interested in a strapless board class...
Chris

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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby NCKite_Ryder » Fri Aug 10, 2012 11:41 am

exactly... i know the races in Seattle have a surfboard class, maybe even a tt class (although thats pretty lame for Crissy)
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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby wmorris » Mon Aug 13, 2012 4:38 pm

Come out to Crissy this Thursday - we are almost at the end of our season (3 races to go) and we have a race which starts at 5:30. There are lots of guys selling used race boards / used fins. You will have a tough time making it round the race course with a surfboard, so you will need to get your hands on a raceboard at some point. The board is more important than having race kites, but you won't be competitive unless you have both and have learned to ride the race boards which is pretty different from riding a surfboard or twin tip. I would focus on tri-fin boards which is what everyone is riding these days (Mike's Lab boards are the most popular and what the fastest guys are riding, but you will have a long wait to get one. Nils boards have been performing pretty well also and a few guys are riding Aguera boards too). You can check out the race schedule at the St. Francis website and don't be afraid to ask for advice at Crissy - everyone usually has a few beers after the races which is a good time to learn more.
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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby Captain John » Thu Sep 13, 2012 9:54 am

Come out for training session with me and we'll put in some miles. I have radio helmets that are great for live coaching. Here's a session I had the other day:

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Re: I want to race; now what?

Postby JRaut » Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:06 pm

Captain John wrote:Come out for training session with me and we'll put in some miles. I have radio helmets that are great for live coaching. Here's a session I had the other day:

Cool video; sending you a pm now.

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