Henri Antoine is an International Race Officer at the International Sailing Federation (ISAF). This week, he tells us about a recent boat racing training session that was organised for newcomers to sailing racing: Racing for Dummies!
The first ‘Racing for Dummies’ training session was held in Dunkerque, Northen France on Saturday, April 5, 2014, on the premises of the North Sea Yacht Club.
This event was designed to encourage boaters to take part in boat races. Boaters often want to race but are apprehensive about beginning. It is a fear of not understanding how it is done, or looking ridiculous in comparison to more seasoned competitors.
Thierry Maurick, Chairman of YCMN, (the North Sea Yacht Club) immediately found the idea interesting and fun. It was a way to bring a new audience to boat racing without any pressure in a relaxed setting. Hence the idea of the event title “For Dummies”.
The goal: to demystify and “play down” boat racing, which many people believe to be more complicated than it is.
Participants in this Dunkirk training session really enjoyed it and the event was very successful. To make it as accessible as possible, many concrete examples, diagrams and pictures were used.
MaxSea TimeZero was used to demonstrate how coastal routes can be easily viewed. In coastal routes in areas where marine navigation is tricky, this helped participants to quickly understand how to approach this type of race. They learned how to read and understand nautical charts in a practical way.
The participants really liked how easy it was to integrate wind information (using GRIB files in TimeZero) and tidal current data. These types of information are of course, very important for boat racing.
There was positive feedback from participants, and another session in mid-May is planned.
On February 1st, the French TV channel TF1 broadcast a special report named “Sailors like no others”*. The show was presented by well-known French television personality Claire Chazal and gives us a recap of the 2013 season for Team Jolokia: their crew selections and the Rolex Fastnet Race.
*Original title: “Des marins pas comme les autres”
Team Jolokia is a MaxSea partner, and this sailing team has recently been receiving increased media attention. This is due in part to the fact that this successful team comprises twenty-five people from different backgrounds, including seniors, young people, men, women, able-bodied or disabled.
For more than 30 minutes, the camera recounts an intense year of emotion: Tour de Belle -Ile, Armen Race, Record SNSM, and finally the race of the year: theRolex Fastnet Race! We are shown several moments experienced by the crew of novices, for better or for worse!
The report also immerses us in the personal lives of these amateurs: envy, challenge or discovery, they reveal why they signed up for this unique adventure.
We also see beautiful landscapes at sea and ashore. The crew shows us their desire to excel to achieve a common goal.
MaxSea’s partner Team Jolokia is committed to promoting diversity in their racing crew and they have enjoyed huge success over the last few years. This winter, Jolokia team’s big events are taking place primarily on land. Selections are being made for the 2014 crew and a TV report was broadcast on the French channel TF1 on Saturday February 1st.
Team Jolokia is definitely continuing its momentum and starting the New Year with a bang!
The first steps in the crew selection process took place in Paris on January 27th and more will be run on February 6th and 7th, followed by Lorient which is the home port of their vessel, in late February and early March.
Tests on land and Seine – Three Selection Phases
In the previous try-outs 130 candidates sent in applications during the 6 months following Jolokia’s ad. However, in the 2014 try-outs, between October and November 2013, they received 190 applications to be considered in the first phase of selection.
The number of applications was a great success for the Team, as it continues to receive more and more support. Among all of these diverse and highly-motivated profiles, 45 were selected to participate in the second phase of selection.
This group included 27 men and 18 women from all backgrounds, aged between 18 and 64, from all over France and into Germany, Poland and Spain. They all wanted to join the adventure of diversity that Team Jolokia offers.
Sailing skills, team spirit, ability to share and commitment are all criteria used by Team Jolokia to make these selections. These qualities are desirable as they help enrich the whole team.
Candidates met on January 27 at the premises of the Navy in Saint -Lazare. There, they took written tests on various topics such as weather, hydrodynamics, aerodynamics etc. This was followed by written psychological tests. The Navy is a loyal partner of our Team, and we use the expertise of their psychologists in the recruitment for extreme trades.
On February 6th and 7th, the Nautical club of Sèvres will welcome Team Jolokia for the second consecutive year.
On the Programme: dinghy regattas between barges on the Seine and indoor physical and sports tests.
To complete the day, motivational talks will be given by the organisers as well as psychological interviews with the Navy.
The third phase of selections will be held in Lorient, home port of Team Jolokia’s boat: 3 days of navigating aboard the Volvo Ocean 60. Two sessions are planned to welcome the future teammates in late February and mid-March.
At the end of the third phase, the crew will have 25 teammates in 2014: 17 new candidates and 8 of the 2013 crew will continue the adventure.
.The Team Jolokia Adventure on Television!
The report “Des Marins Pas Comme Les Autres” (“Sailors Like No Others”) recounts the 2013 season, selections of the crew leading up to the Rolex Fastnet Race. It was co-produced by GEDEON Programmes, Ushuaia TV and TF1, and runs for 32 mins.
It was broadcast on French TV channel TF1 on Saturday, February 1 at 1:20pm, just after the news, in the magazine show “Reportages” presented by Claire Chazal.
A great year for Team Jolokia begins under the sign of diversity and living together!
This module allows advanced sailors to manually control and adjust the weather file parameters in order to get more accurate results. It also introduces the variability notion, helping the skipper to identify the particular moments in the navigation where strategy choices are critical.
Marine navigation software has become an indispensable tool in the world of offshore racing. It is critical for race directors to ensure the most accurate preparation and conduct of a competitive race.
The question of whether to install electronic chart software can arise for coastal navigation (cruises or racing) and for offshore trips, so it is very important to identify the merits of using this type of tool….
If a reminder was necessary, the sea is of course, a formidable environment. It requires accurate planning, both on land and at sea. This anticipation is needed in order to fully understand, prepare and carry out navigation with good seamanship.
The following factors affect each and every route navigated: the distance and time needed to cover it depending on the boat specs, the type of coastline and its dangers, weather and sea conditions, tidal currents, the ports or shelters along the route etc.
Nowadays, a navigation software installed on a laptop such as TimeZero developed by MaxSea, allows integration with, and quick and easy access to all of the above elements in just a few clicks of the mouse.
Whether you are at home in the preparation phase, or in live navigation mode, course preparation is made extremely comprehensive, and also allows a high level of interface customization.
The TimeZero software features a wide zoom level on charts, (which is identical to SHOM charts, and should therefore remain “familiar-looking”) which is the equivalent of having a wide portfolio of paper charts immediately accessible. Thus the tools zoom-in and zoom-out then allow you to have a good visual picture of the desired navigation area.
TimeZero allows you to overlay satellite photos on your chart, so that you can visualize specific places in advance, and plan a correct approach to the area!
In addition, the “divider” tool (bearing/distance) can be used to quickly segment the route, or measure distances and position themselves in relation to geographic points of interest. It is possible to simultaneously create a course outline using the “route” tool and to start live navigation. With just a few clicks along the way, you have your route, distance and direction (true or magnetic option) between each waypoint, as well as the cumulative distance. You can name each waypoint, and insert or move a waypoint at any time during navigation of the route.
Preparing a route becomes fun and you can always refer back to your navigation logbook. By making all the possible adjustments, a basic route gradually transforms into a detailed course, corresponding with your expectations such as your safety criteria in relation to distance from shore or a shoal, a place that you want to see up close etc.
All data created in the software can then be saved with the route name, and even assigned to a specific layer, which as its name suggests can be displayed or hidden according to your wishes. Once activated, this route can be exported to your GPS for rapid access to route information.
Once the software is integrated with onboard navigation hardware (GPS and other suitable instruments) TimeZero is transformed into an even more powerful navigation aid. Your boat is symbolized by an icon to scale that moves in real time on your screen, as simple as a video game.
After importing the marine weather forecast file (commonly known as a “GRIB” file), you can launch the routing function to optimize your route by integrating the effects of weather conditions on your route. You can also calculate the ETA on the next waypoint or decide the fastest route to reach your end point. The routing function and comprehensive weather of TimeZero opens the door to anticipation, and accurate planning.
In conclusion, after many years at the chart table equipped with a Cras Ruler, a handheld compass and dividers, with an eye on the GPS, it now seems essential to have TimeZero onboard, whatever the intended sailing, inshore or offshore, whether racing or cruising!
Happy navigating to all of you this summer.
Race Director – Navigator
Gilles Chiorri is a French sailor and Merchant Navy officer with an impressive background as a skipper.
He is the new race director and race manager of the MOD70 European Tour and other major ocean races. He works also as OC Events Director and Yachts Consulting Executive Director.
Chiorri won the Mini Transat in 1987, the Jules Verne Trophy in 2002 (with Bruno Peyron) and finished second in La Solitaire du Figaro in 2002.
Gilles Chiorri is currently using MaxSea TimeZero marine software, nautical charts and modules as a sailor and race director.
Pour la saison 2012-2013, Sam Davies bénéficie du résultat d’une alliance technologique, le nouveau PC radar, et devient ainsi une des premières sportives à l’utiliser à bord de son nouveau bateau Savéol, récemment mis à l’eau.
Cette solution révolutionnaire permet aux coureurs de bénéficier d’un équipement très performant tout en préservant les contraintes de poids et d’espace à bord (connexion directe du PC à l’antenne radar).
La skipper, qui se prépare d’ores et déjà à la prochaine édition du Vendée Globe, a mis son nouveau bateau à l’eau la semaine dernière et a commencé à naviguer à Port-la-Forêt afin de tester Savéol dans des conditions réelles.
This 2012-2013 season, Sam Davies will benefit from a unique joint venture technology, the new PC radar, and be one of the first racers to sail with on her recently launched Savéol boat.
This revolutionary and lightweight solution allows racers to have highly-performing equipment without sacrificing speed and space by connecting her PC directly to the radar antenna.
The female skipper, who started training for the upcoming Vendée Globe, officially launched her new boat last week and started her sailing sessions off Port-la-Forêt in order to test Savéol in real conditions.