Royal Navy Formula Training

8 May 2005

Mark Kay's Formula Training

Weymouth - April 05

Mark Kay at Weymouth a couple of years ago. The recent Royal Navy training session at Weymouth turned out to be a fantastic weekend. Mark Kay made the 275-mile journey down to Weymouth. Weymouth is surely one of the best windsurfing venues in the country. After the long drive an early night was in order a big thank you to Alan Round for letting me stay in his 4 star Campervan accommodation.

Saturday morning was sunny with a blue sky and very little wind. Three of the youth sailors, who attended all the winter training sessions, had travelled down to join in. By 9.30am all three of the youth sailors were rigged and ready to go but there was no sign of her majesty's Navy.
At around 10am the Navy lads started appearing one by one and we had a quick briefing. After the briefing rigging was conducted at a leisurely pace and all were on the water well before lunch! (It's a good job we were in no rush as they were so chilled out!)

In the very light wind the Navy lads were not really up for any type of training and the youths were showing them up, however once they got into the swing of things the Navy started to show just how good they are. After a couple of hours of hard work all the sailors understood just how important sailing in light winds is. It can improve your skills. After lunch the wind just picked up enough to get planing and we all had a good afternoon practicing some sail techniques.

That night a few of us went over to Nick Deverell's house for drink, a big thank you for the use of the shower. Then it was time to meet up with the Navy for a curry and a few games of pool in the local pub. What a really good night!

Formula racing at WeymouthSunday brought more wind however clouds and rain were to follow. After some intense upwind, downwind sailing and a few rigging tips the wind picked up to 16 - 20 knots and the race training was hard, fast and fun.

Everyone followed Mark straight down wind in full on planing conditions. Once at the far wall of Weymouth Harbour a race was planned, unfortunately 30 seconds before the start the wind started to drop and become very gusty. One minute there was nothing and then from nowhere 18 knots, wind shifts of forty-five degrees too. After a very long beat back we all arrived at the beach totally knackered. A debrief took place about the weekend's training and then time for some free sailing.

Thank you to Jamie Walker for organising the training and a big thank you to Alan Round, who became mother for the weekend cooking and cleaning, made me feel welcome.

See you all at Pwllheli.

Mark Kay