Sailboat Racing Tips – Main Sheet, Spinnaker

I spent last weekend doing the 2016 POD Regatta which was my first race. There was a lot to learn, even for a somewhat experienced sailor. I made some notes on the two jobs I did over the weekend:

MAIN TRIMMING – SAILING
– Tighten boom vang
– Crank on the main sheet, center the boom where possible (without excessive heeling)
– Use traveller to keep rail out of the water, ease fine-tune also if need be, re-trim when possible
– Use fine-tune to bury the top tell-tale

MAIN TRIMMING – TACK:
– Release fine-tune back to neutral
– Pull traveller to windward side
– Switch sides
– Be ready to adjust

MAIN TRIMMING – ROUNDING WINDWARD MARK
– Ease boom vang
– Ease traveller
– Ease main sheet in stages as boat rotates until all the way out

MAIN TRIMMING – GYB
– Move to leeward side
– Pull main sheet over and try not to let it flop too hard
– If blowing too hard, will need to trim main in, pull main across to gyb, and then ease it

MAIN TRIMMING – ROUNDING LEEWARD MARK
– Fine-tune to neutral
– Trim boom vang
– Trim main sheet hard
– Trim traveller
– Adjust fine-tune to bury the top tell-tale

SPINNAKER – DEPLOY
– Deploy jib (if not already deployed)
– Deploy pole and tack line into position
– Bring spinnaker head to center of jib for raising
– Hoist spinnaker main behind jib
– Trim spin sheet
– Furl jib

SPINNAKER – GYB
– Ease working spin line
– Pull in lazy spin line to clew
– MAKE SURE YOU’RE ON THE (NEW) WINDWARD SIDE OF SPIN SHEET
– Pull clew around forestay, down to the deck and back
– Make sure spin foot clears bow pulpit
– Trim lazy spin line to become working spin line

SPINNAKER – DOUSE
– Deploy jib
– Make sure lazy spin sheet is on the leeward side of the hatch
– Open hatch, squirrel ready
– Ease working sheet
– Pull in lazy spin line to clew
– Get clew into hatch
– Release spin halyard at measured pace
– Make sure foot of spin gets on the boat and into the hatch

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