Do we really want the A Class to be about who can build the fastest boat, or who is the best sailor. It seems the foiling thing will always be about the latest, fastest, configuration, not the best sailor. Leave the foilers (really cool) to foil, and leave the
A cats to race as they have always done. Yes, I have an A Cat, and no, I don't want ( can't afford ) to play the foiling game. I know I can go another to another class, and I will if we go spending, I mean foiling. My 2 cents
Suggest that you are one of the sensible ones.
Too many huge egos in sailing, with "my boat is faster, blah blah blah"
Haven't sailed A's though my time in skiffs was enough exposure. Certainly fun to sail but there is an element that tight racing supplies that I've never seen development classes deliver on.
Personally I am for foiling in the A cats. It seems to me that the only way to effectively ban foiling in the A cats is to make a rule prohibiting lifting surfaces in the back of the boat, i.e. require straight rudders. The I-14 class uses a similar method to prevent foiling 14s, they only allow 1 foil with lifting surfaces and limit the area.
Have to admit that the method the I-14s use is not insurmountable but is pretty hard to overcome. Perhaps this is a way the A-Class can move forward with some sanity
You can see by my number of posts, that I am not one to frequently share my opinion here. On this particular topic, however, I feel compelled to do so.
I’m afraid the pros are going to spoil the A-Class. I believe that foiling is beyond the financial tolerance of the majority of the class. And the higher physical demands, along with the higher risk of boat damage and bodily injury from crashes, make the whole prospect that much more unappealing. (This opinion coming from a guy who’s a bit of a speed demon/dare devil already...I race iceboats, for crying out loud! And for my age (52), I'm in exceptional physical condition and still quite athletic).
Yes, it’s a development class, but when the speed of development makes competitiveness only plausible for guys who get paid to sail and/or guys who don’t have to pay for their boats and all their broken equipment, than most of the rest of us will exit the class. Who’s going to fill the pipeline then? Certainly not the young guys, because it’s too damn expensive. Too many other options for much less expensive thrills. I don’t believe that two A-Cat classes—a foiling and non-foiling—would be successful, either. Our numbers are not strong enough for that type of fragmentation. We already struggle with having enough critical mass for regional events.
Few of us expect to be at the top of the fleet, but we want to at least feel like we’re “in the game.” Foiling in the A-Class will create a game with fewer and fewer players. That’s simply not good for sailing any way you slice it.
Agreed. If the costs go up, then people find other places to put their scarce cash.
14' skiff numbers are not what they used to be, part of this would be due to the costs of competing. Who knows, perhaps the Taipan 4.9's numbers will rise by a large movement away from the As