What's New?
  For Sale
  A History
  Email List
  Members Only
  Marine Weather
  Local Weather
  Contact Us
Forums / Racing / Racing  
The discussions for this thread include the following:

Posted: 26 Apr 2007 at 12:26am
So, any one out there currently racing a dolphin? I am starting my first season racing her, and I would love to hear what works from any one more experianced with this boat. I raced two races last october in 10 and 25-30 knots of air, and had a ball. She seems to take the heavier air like she is supposed to be out on the whitecaps. I tend to think we get better perfomance downwind than upwind. It's hard to say though, my main was about 20 or so years old. I have a new one now which should help. I have raced for several years on a 39' but I love sailing my dolphin, it's just more......fun.

Yankee Dolphin Hull # 203

Posted: 27 Apr 2007 at 8:45pm
I race my Dolphin 3-4 times a year. I am always short handed, racing with 2 or 3 on board, 4 rarely. I should race with 5. I normally race in a spinnaker class. The boat has an excellent racing record and has won her class many times. She always has the highest PHRF rating in the fleet - spinnaker rating is 251. My experience is as follows:

1. Our boat is very fast on dead down wind or near dead down wind angles especially in light breezes. We have a big spinnaker maxed for downwind work, and a big, high roach main. 2. When there is a lot of reaching I feel that the Dolphin loses advantage - not a good reacher. 3. She is fast upwind in light breezes - but in 15+ knots and a 2/3+ foot chop you need weight on the rail to keep her down, and carry enough sail area to be able to punch through, otherwise you slow down. You can reef to keep her on her feet but then you lose power. 4. Our 'rule' is don't go out with a wind forecast higher than our 24' boat length. 5. Under 12 knots of breeze we feel that its our race and we lose only when we mess up by going the wrong way. 6. She is not fast through tacks so we don't get in tacking duals with others.

Ron Marionette

Posted: 28 Apr 2007 at 9:07am
Thanks Ron, good info. I will be racing spinnaker class as well. I am surprised about your observations on reaching, I thought downwind and reaching would be her better points of sail. I have to agree that she is slow through the tacks. A few questions for you though...

1. Are you talking reaching with a chute or genny or both?

2. How close to the wind are you able to sail upwind?

3. What is your sail inventory for racing?

4. Do you have a rule of thumb for what sails you carry in different wind conditions? (Upwind)

5. I figure 3 crew and a couple to ride the rail. Sound about right?

Yankee Dolphin Hull # 203

Posted: 29 Apr 2007 at 3:47pm
1. Maybe not a good reacher is misleading. My experience is that, relative to other boats that rate faster in her class, she ‘makes out” upwind and downwind in a light breeze. She seems to lose this advantage reaching whether with a genny or chute, and also as the breeze picks up. Other boats in her usual racing class are Pearson Wanderer, 26, 30, 31; C&C 27 and 28; Ranger 26 and 29; Morgan 24; Beneteau 30.

2. I am embarrassed to say I don’t really know the exact tacking angles – again depends on the breeze. As I say above she points at least as well or better with the boats listed above in under 10 knots or so. As the breeze picks up this advantage tends to diminish.

3. Our first team is a light 170%, a heavier 140%, a blade type 7/8 luff heavy jib that sheets to an inside track next to the cabin trunk (a sail we really like), a maxed out downwind chute and a high roach maxed main with longish battens and 2 reefs

4) We carry the 170% up to 10 knots max – it has a second tack grommet about 12 inches up the luff that reduces the SA a bit which helps. At 10 knots we go to the 140% which we can carry up to 15-17 knots, a bit higher if the have enough crew to hold the boat down, and maybe a double reef in the main. If only a total of 3 crew (helmsman, 2 on the rail) then we go to the blade at 14-15.

Again depending on crew weight we try to keep her on her feet by reefing – usually at 14/15 knots with 2 on the rail. We need the power to get through heavy chop but too much heeling is slow.

5. # of crew – This is a small boat. I have raced with just 2 of us – fun but hard work, not good in a breeze, but a winner in light air. Usually, there are 3 of us, more fun and better in a breeze, and also a winner in light air. Occasionally we have 4 and the weight helps to keep her down. I have never had 5. The boat is set up for single handing so trimming is simplified and the helmsman can do a lot more than on some boats

My overall experience is that, whatever the crew situation, in a regatta we hang in there in a breeze, and have an excellent chance to take home the silver in light air. In the interest of full disclosure, I race with my two kids who are former collegiate all Americans and 420 Class national champions. They think the Dolphin is just a big dinghy and sail it that way.

Posted: 29 Apr 2007 at 4:59pm
Thanks again for the great info. You sail a bigger #1 then I do. I can see why you like light air. I debated on using a 170 and taking the 3 second penalty, but opted against it. I like the idea of having a second tack grommet. probably reduces the sail to a 150 or so? I am also rigged to singlehand, but not as much fun without company! I figure most races will be three of us on board but I would like to have extras that are willing to learn. Two competent sailors could certainly race this boat, but like you said, a lot of work. Ideally, a foredeck, a trimmer, and a helm/main. Obviously a lot of variables for pointing, but your example answered my question. Thanks again, you have been very helpful. I will probably be back with more questions! -M.

Yankee Dolphin Hull # 203

1 [Home] [A History] [Technical] [Restorations] [Stories] [Forum]
[Members Only] [Links] [Marine Weather] [Local Weather] [Contact Us]

© Copyright 2007. All Rights Reserved.

Website Design by EasyWebCreations.com & Powered by ASP Hosting