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 Post subject: Racing positions
PostPosted: 17 Mar 2022 14:14 
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Rail Meat

Joined: 18 Jan 2021 20:46
Posts: 24
All -

Iíve decided to try my hand at local Tuesday night racing and Iím looking for recommendations on crew positions.

With the main and traveler booth located on the cabin top, how did you arrange crew?

Iím thinking:
Bow
Mast
2 cockpit trimmers
Tactician
helmsman

Do you have a pit person who trims main and deals with the traveler and spin downhaul?

Do I need someone else?

Appreciate your thoughts and experience.

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-Steve

Heart of Gold #343
Long Island Sound


 
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 Post subject: Re: Racing positions
PostPosted: 17 Mar 2022 22:08 
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Skipper

Joined: 29 Dec 2006 09:38
Posts: 635
This seems like way too many people on the boat. Particularly if the crew has not worked with one another in racing situations. I have raced my T37 with two crew (bow guy, winch guy--I do my own tactics with advice from experienced crew--team effort) in addition to me and it works fine in short races in moderate winds. If you are going overnight and offshore you need folks for alternate watches and a schedule you really follow.
My view is that the skills and experience of the crew is more important than how many once you are above 3 folks.
Ray Durkee


 
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 Post subject: Re: Racing positions
PostPosted: 18 Mar 2022 11:30 
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Midshipman

Joined: 06 Sep 2020 10:08
Posts: 72
Speaking of spinnaker use while racing: my experience on lightweight, planing boats (dinghies, J22, Express 27, Synergy 1000, etc) is that we always use the spinnaker downwind because more power means more faster. The Tartan 37 is a lot heavier and doesn't plane (at least not for us).

So we've come to think the benefit of the spinnaker is in light wind. Under 10 knots apparent, using the spinnaker downwind helps us go 5 or 6 knots instead of 3-4 with white sails. Once the breeze is up to about 15 apparent, the spinnaker doesn't really provide any extra speed. (And then we usually twist it, rip it, or get it fouled up so we can't get the sock down.)

Yes, we need a lot more practice, and maybe some sock improvements.

Does the rest of the fleet agree that the spinnaker doesn't help much in heavy air because, broad reaching with the genoa, the boat is already at hull speed?


 
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 Post subject: Re: Racing positions
PostPosted: 19 Mar 2022 07:55 
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Skipper

Joined: 21 Oct 2006 18:12
Posts: 305
Yes that is what I've found, she only goes so fast and improving light air performance is what is important.

Richard


 
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 Post subject: Re: Racing positions
PostPosted: 19 Mar 2022 17:40 
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Skipper

Joined: 29 Dec 2006 09:38
Posts: 635
I would agree that putting the chute up on short legs with higher winds is for experienced crews who have worked together a lot. My boat will surf (not plane) with a following sea of 5 or 6 feet and the chute will help on some long legs in SF Bay. But crew experience and coordination of the foredeck and helm person is key to making it useful in a short race.

Another, unasked for, hint in racing: in VERY light winds, the boat is incredibly sensitive to crew movement around the boat. Very dinghy like in how quickly it can be stopped. Surprised me. I have moved on the fleet in light air because the weight of the boat is actually an advantage in very flukey light air where momentum can be a factor--and everyone is in displacement mode. The T37 collects momentum from little gusts (that the lighter boats do not seem to respond) if crew can keep movement to a minimum.

Seems like they should recognize planing and non planing differences in race rules, just as they do for spinnaker and non spinnaker classes. PHRF and other rules just do not make up for the planing boat advantage, particularly downwind. It has resulted in a real division of racing and cruising sailboats. The Tartan 37 is one of the last of the boats to try to bridge the gap (Cal 39, Ericson 38, Sabre 38, etc) in performance and comfort upwind and downwind.


 
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 Post subject: Re: Racing positions
PostPosted: 20 Mar 2022 19:33 
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Rail Meat

Joined: 18 Jan 2021 20:46
Posts: 24
All - this is great and a lot of good info.

I guess I need to be more specific. I'm racing in Long Island Sound - evenings are almost always light air, 5-12, so a spinnaker will be used. I actually crewed occasionally on a T-37 when I was a kid and they were brand new boats. Danged if I can remember all of it, I was the bow kid.

I've done a decent amount of racing (on smaller boats - Lightnings, J-24s, Etchells) and we are rounding up a crew that has some decent racing experience as well. And we can all learn more!

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-Steve

Heart of Gold #343
Long Island Sound


 
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