Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Olympic Sailing-A Day with the Swiss Team

Introduction by William L. Gills aka Bos'n Bill

The London 2012 Olympics are about to begin with a bang with the opening ceremonies scheduled for Friday, July 27.  One of the most exciting events for boaters, especially for sailing enthusiasts are the Men's Finn Races.

The races are scheduled to be held in Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbor in Dorset on the south coast of England where you'll find some of the best natural sailing waters in the UK, with great facilities on land to match.  

The sailing craft used in the 2012 Olympics is called a Finn,a single handed cat rigged Olympic class sailing dinghy.  It's been used in every summer Olympics since 1952.  Finn Race 1 begins July 29, 2012 with races scheduled every day concluding with the Medal Race on August  5, 2012. Here are a few interesting details about the craft. 
LOA4.5 m (14 ft 9 in)
LWL4.34 m (14 ft 3 in)
Beam1.47 m (4 ft 10 in)
Draft0.17 m (6.7 in)
Hull weight145 kg (320 lb)
Mast height6.66 m (21 ft 10 in)
Mainsail area10.6 m2 (114 sq ft)

Winning is about how you prepare your equipment, how you read the wind, the waves and how you position yourself in relation to the other competitors your are racing against.  There's no luck involved.  It's about commitment, hard work and experience.  Here's a clip of the Swiss Olympic team which will give you a glimpse of how Olympic sailors train to win.

Double click on the screen to enlarge and enhance to video.

William L. Gills aka Bos'n Bill, webmaster of this site, is the author of the book Lubber's Log, published by Llumina Press; a boating journal and adventure story of the author's first time experiences in the preparation, maintenance and piloting of a new, unfamiliar boat. 


  1. Should be some good boat racing at this years Olympics

    1. I agree. Keep and eye on Ben Ainslie (Great Britain) as he goes after his 4th gold medal. He's striving to be the best Olympic sailor or all time.