Frank Bethwaite High Performance Sailing

ISBN 13: 9780877424192

High Performance Sailing

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"Nothing could be more different than downwind speeds of 6 knots and 12 knots. But I have watched helm after helm settle for 6 because it never occurred to them that 12 was available. This 'mindset' - the conviction that there is only one best way to handle a boat and that we already know it - appears to affect the crews of all classes, from dinghies to 12-Metres. So often, what holds us back from achieving what we want to achieve is our own rigidity of thinking.
The purpose of this book is to open a few windows."
The text above, demonstrates Frank Bethwaite's original and innovative concept of yacht racing today. This book is the result of many years painstaking research and his intuitive deductions will influence almost every aspect of the sport.
During the past two decades there has been a revolution in the way some Australian skiff-class designers and sailors have thought about, designed, built and sailed their boats. These classes are free from all restrictions and so create an environment in which new materials and technology can be tried, developed and optimised. The combined effect of these changes has been to achieve a spectacular increase in performance. This book is about the new ideas which have led to these greater speeds and the faster sailing techniques which have been developed to achieve them.
In suitable conditions some high performance boats can now sail around a course at an average speed faster than the wind. The new ideas and handling techniques which have developed around these boats are proving faster when applied to conventional boats also. This 'spin-off' can help everybody sail faster.

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About the Author:

Frank Bethwaite has been at the leading edge of national and world class sailing for over fifty years. Apart from his own outstanding racing successes, he has coached every level of would-be champion from basic to Olympic standards. Within his own family, three are Olympic champions and three are world champions in four classes.

From a background which included aeronautical engineering and meteorology, Frank spent thirty years in military and civil aviation and finally in scientific flying. His leisure pursuits, other than sailing, have been model gliders (twice open world endurance record holder) and also flying high performance gliders, which he used to explore the detail of some of the atmosphere's movements.

When he retired from flying he decided to find out how sailboats worked, so that he could try to make them sail faster. The experimental years followed, in which a combination of controlled experiments and fleet evaluation released a surge of creativity and the average speed of small sailboats increased from about one third the windspeed to about one half. This work then blended into a period when Frank and his family became involved with very high performance boats, partly the eighteen foot skiffs of Sydney and partly a series of twenty much smaller and progressively faster experimental craft. That the average "round the buoys race" speed of two thirds the wind speed has now increased to windspeed or faster, is in no small way due to Frank's theoretical and experimental input.

Review:

"One of the most readable books on the complex subject of sailing faster, and without doubt, a must for every racing sailor."—Yachts and Yachting

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