Giggling fits and The Flying Finn to the fore

Posted on June 18, 2018 9:29 am

Giggling fits and The Flying Finn to the fore

The Death Roll. A rather dark and sinister description of a fairly common capsize format, which triggered a giggling fit in my crew, Imogen, today.

It happens when sailing downwind in strong and gusty winds. The boat starts to roll from side to side, with the boom tip looking like it’s trampolining off the water. Eventually, the crew are unable to counter the rock and roll and you fall backwards, upwind, into the water with the sail and boom descending from a height on top of you.

It feels similar to when, as a student, you trusted people to catch you when you fell backwards off a stage or table. You just need to remember to shut your mouth in a boat, which is tricky in the middle of a giggling fit.

A brilliant, if bouncy day, with several youngsters from last season’s F3 club unperturbed by the dark skies and white horses in the force 4 gusting-5s.

Finn, hereafter called ‘The Flying’, is getting rather competent in a Pico and I did wonder if overtaking his teacher during our capsize, had triggered the mirth attack.

With the Hewitts teamed together in their Miracle, super septuagenarians Keith and John in another, a senior instructor and experienced crew in a Bahia and Dave, Finn and Max in the hyper PY Picos, we had little expectation for victory in the Vago.

Maybe it was James keeping his dad dry on Father’s Day, maybe luck, or rather less likely, a stunning display of agility and ability by yours truly, with Imogen providing ballast and tactics. In any event, by the final race we had a substantial lead over the line with a reasonable expectation of last place once the handicaps are processed.

I don’t care – it was a giggle.