For the 2015 Blind Sailing Worlds, please head to the event page of the Chicago Yacht Club.
Two races were sailed today, and the results include now also the two discarded races into the calculation, available here.
The windy waters out of Seabournia Yacht Club were the stage to four races on the third day of racing, where increasing wind and waves made things tricky for the vision impaired sailors, but also for their sighted crew, and unfortunately resulted in several contacts damaging boats, and requiring the organisers to bring in two replacement boats.
However, the previous day's results are underlined, with three countries showing their talents. GBR ranks first in both B1 and B2 divisions helmed respectively by Sharon Grennan and Lucy Hodges, while the B3 team with Liam Cattermole on the tiller is scoring second before discards. Japan's blind B1 team with Chifumi Uchimara is in second place, while B2 sailor Keiko Ogura and B3 helmsperson Noriko Yokokura are holding third places in their respective fleets. New Zealand's David Allerton is one point ahead of Japan in the B2 division, but Tony Holmes, also from far south has a comfortable lead in first place of the B3 sailors.
In this type of racing, team dynamics holds a primary role in getting good results. The sighted tactician is prohibited from touching any controls (neither tiller nor ropes or spars) leaving him with only oral instructions to accurately guide the helmsperson on the right track. The sighted crew on jib can help control the boom, and guide the vision impaired person adjusting mainsheet. A misunderstood instruction, or simply giving more or less helm than expected can result in dramatic results, from missing the start line to hitting a mark or another boat.
With forecast of strong winds and heavy seas, Thursday's racing is cancelled, so reserve day Friday should be used to run two races if possible. After windy and close sailing Wednesday, the rest will be appreciated.
After yesterday's lay day the sailors were today again on the water for four more races. The provisional results are posted here. The pictures and videos of the third racing day are available on the Images and Video pages.
The second day of racing in the Japanese waters of Koajiro Bay proved challenging to the Race committee, as variable light winds were slow to steady in direction in the morning, and obliged moving marks and changing courses as the day progressed.
Despite the difficulties, three races were completed, for a total of seven races, allowing results management to drop the worst score for each boat. Numerous protests the previous day had changed the scoreboard, and day two further shuffled the results, which should soon be available here : www.2013worldblindsailingjp.com/results/
In the B1 division, Sharon Grennan and Vicki Sheen (GBR) comforted their lead by scoring third in the first race and then winning the two following races. In the B2 fleet Lucy Hodges and Martin Phillips (GBR) did likewise, scoring 2 -1 – 1, while the B3 team from New Zealand, Tony Holmes and Benjamin Geddes continued their series with three bullets on day 2 !
Day 3 is scheduled to be a lay day, the organisers have already run seven races so the sailors deserve a good rest. Many will use this day to see a litlle of the lovely agricultural and cultural area around Miura City – famous for local cabbage and radish, but above all for being near Kamakura, the home of the Samurai, with great Shrines and Daibutsu – the Great Buddha of Kamakura.
In the Land if the Rising Sun, dawn breaks a little after four in the morning, leaving ample time for the 19 teams from around the world participating in the IFDS Blind Sailing World and International Championships 2013 to awake and get ready for the first day of racing. Breakfast was served in the Seabournia Yacht Club which is hosting the event. An occasion for the sailors to share enthusiastic comments on the previous evening's Opening Ceremony with its Traditional Japanese dancing and music, Lion dances and buffet dinner. The J 24s chosen for this event were drawn after the opening ceremony according to a traditional Japanese method.
These IFDS Worlds use the fleet racing format, where each boat is manned by a crew of four persons. Two of the crew present a vision impairment, the person at the helm deciding the category in which the boat sailed. B1 category is helmed by totally blind sailors, while in the B2 and B3 categories the helmspersons are respectively less impaired. The second vision impaired person handles the mainsheet, while aboard each boat there is also a sighted jib trimmer, and a sighted tactician who can only give oral instructions but never touch any of the boat's controls
In the warm and sunny waters off the coast of Miura, Kanagawa, Japan, the breeze grew steadily Sunday morning from the south enabling the race committee to run four races for each of the fleets of B1, B2, and B3 sailors. Weather predictions for later in the week are not encouraging, and the organizers were eager to get as many races in the first two days as possible.
In all three fleets, racing was close, as can be seen on the scoreboard available here: www.2013worldblindsailingjp.com/results/
A considerable number of protests however changed the final results.
In the B1 division, the Japan-A crew skippered by Yuki Kawazoe won two out of the four races, putting them into the lead at the end of the day.
B2 skipper Lucy Hodges, and her crew from Great Britain showed consistently good speed, rewarded by the top score overall after four races, while in the B3 division New Zealand's Tony Holmes demonstrated that he was a good contender for the top of the board coming second in one race but winning the three others.
The weather forecast for Monday's racing is similar, with partly cloudy skies and a building southerly breeze which should make for some good racing the second day.
Day 1 of racing is finished and the provisional results are published on the Results page.
The Sailing Instructions and the first two Questions and Answers are published and available on the Download page.
The first sailors and their supporters have arrived in Japan!
Also, the boats were delivered to the marina and the volunteers together with the measurer are preparing them for the race. This link shows not only the actual weather at the marina, but also the piers with the boats sometimes visible.
In order to ensure the safety of all competitors and guests, the organizing committee has prepared a procedure document describing what to do in case we receive a Tsunami warning while on the water or at the marina. The document is available here and on the Downloads page. We will also explain this procedure at the skippers briefing. In case a Tsunami warning is issued while at the event hotel: the Maholova Minds is a designated evacuation building and bilingual volunteers will be also staying at the hotel.
Dresscode: during the opening ceremony and also the award ceremony, semi-formal dress code is asked for. All competitors and their supporters are welcome to come in their team uniforms. Please leave your shorts, sandals and T-shirts in your sail-bag or at the hotel. Showers and changing rooms are available at the marina.
See you soon!
The provisional Sailing Instructions are available on the Download page in PDF version and also in TXT version for users with screen reader software.
Also, Notice to Competitors No. 2 is published.
One month to go!
All teams have completed their member lists and several pictures were added or updated. Please refresh your web browser cache and see the updated Teams page for details.
Most teams have also fixed their flight schedules and the organizer team is preparing the transfer arrangement between Yokohama City Air Terminal (YCAT) and the event hotel. Volunteers will be greeting the teams at the YCAT and assist with the transfer.
Less then two month until we race!
We have entries from six countries/states, with seven teams in the B1 class, five teams in the B2 class and also seven teams in the B3 class. The team members, their profiles and pictures are awailable now on the Team page. Some people and their pictures are still missing - we will add them once we get their documents.
For questions, please contact the Organizing Authority.
The link page provides now also links to the official web pages of the two international airports, Narita and Haneda. Also, information about renting cars and the challenges of driving in Japan is now awailable.
The entry form sheets and an information document for travel and accomodation are now available on the Downloads and Forms page.
The Notice of Race has been published on the Downloads and Forms page.