United Kingdom

Coaching Weekend

RS800 Coaching with Roger Phillips at Grafham Water SC 6 May 17

A heavy, overcast sky and a fresh to feisty onshore breeze greeted the seven RS800s rigging up for the Grafham Water SC coaching day on 6th May.  While the crews finished rigging for 10am ('ish!), our coach Roger Phillips circulated to find out what they wanted to cover for the day.  After collecting hot drinks the company assembled in the comfortable top bar for a discussion about the key factors for successfully "turning the corners".

Once we were all clear on what we were trying to do, a strapped-down RS800 was used for a set of shore drills.  These put into practice the step patterns and eye-hand-rope co-ordination needed for crews to quickly cross the boat.  The drills over, crews put it into practice on the water with a session of tacking and gybing around windward-leeward marks as the coach followed each boat in turn to offer comments and advice.  The wind had steadied to a lovely F4 by now, which made for near perfect practice conditions - apart from the lack of sun!

After a late but very welcome lunch ashore and de-brief, crews returned to the water to practice starting and then a series of one lap races provided a slightly more pressured situation for practicing the tacks and gybe techniques from the morning session.  The coach boat was again in attendance, this time with video footage capturing the action.  With time on water maximised, there was just time for a final de-brief with each boat over a cup of tea and cake before the clubhouse closed and it was time to pack up the boats and head for home.  Despite the very wide range of experience in the crews, from RS800 newbies to top end flyers, everyone felt they'd had an excellent day’s coaching and looking forward to the next GWSC coaching day on 30 September.

Thanks to our coach Roger Phillips and Grafham Water SC for hosting the coaching.

Photograph by Clare Sargent of Roger Phillips and his crew Will Crocker checking their rig before launching to win the 2015 RS800 Inland Championship at Grafham Water SC.