Saturday, March 13, 2010

Thoughts on a Perfect World's Venue

With comments rolling about the conditions in Dubai and whether it was a good choice, here're my thoughts for what they're worth:

1. Warm water. Given the choice who doesn't like sailing where it's warm? Forget any spot with water temps below 55˚F (13˚C.) The perfect temp? Just about 75˚F (24˚C.)

2. Fresh water. Given the option, I always enjoy fresh water over salt water. Less to wash down after sailing and the gear dries more quickly.

3. Friendly beach launching. Imagine a well manicured grass lawn adjacent to a wooden bulkhead with about 5 feet of water at the edge. Of course, a sandy bottom to boot. Sloping beaches are okay, but rocks popping up at random heights aren't. Why sail where there's a concrete ramp, unless there's not other choice?

4. Shore facilities. The Gorge proved these aren't necessary, but I would love to see plenty of showers, toilets, and changing rooms. In this respect, Weymouth was nice.

5. Accoutrements for the spectators and press. The course should be within view of shore and there should be sufficient wifi and internet resources.

6. Social scene. For getting together before and after racing. Wine, women and song...

7. Climatological history of varied breeze. That's the rub. Nobody likes low riding and nobody likes 30+. So the ideal venue will have a mix over the six days of racing of a couple of days each of 7-10kts, 10-18 kts, and 18-25kts. Or, perhaps, light in the morning and gradually building each day with a sea breeze. Give the lightweights and the heavy air specialists a shot at "their" conditions, but don't let one condition predominate.

So, while Weymouth was at the heavy end, the Gorge in the middle, and Dubai at the light end, we really haven't had a varied mix in the past three Worlds. It’s gratifying to see Amac near the top this week, given he finished 2nd in 2008. What will Lake Macquarie bring?

1 comment:

Phil Stevenson said...

Sounds a lot like Belmont.
Shortfall on Joes list is salt water and a short wade out to foil depth.

It does have a huge club with bar, spectator balcony great showers, grass rigging area, racing close to spectators etc