Meet the RS700 Fleet

Name: Chris Wright
Boat: RS700 – 926
How long have you been sailing the 700? Since July 2007
How long have you sailed? Since 1973
What boats have you sailed in the past? Grad, GP, Enterprise, Ospray, Lark, Laser 1, Laser 4000, Laser 5000, Must skiff.
Best bit of 2009? Going out in the RS800 with Pete Shaw in a force 6-7 and still being here to tell the tale.
Why sail the 700? Had my car blocked in by Richard Allen’s car, Pete Shaw had put my left arm over my right shoulder. Richard Allen then had hidden my RS600 sail and they both stuck post-it notes relating to an RS700 for sale, all over my car.
Looking forward to in 2010? The game is moving on, and with the stakes getting better, with better racing at the club. The battle is on for top dog, to keep in front of Pete Shaw and Richard Allen. Also, with the new boys getting better as well, light air days will be fun with Richard B, John, Colin, Matt and Sean having a chance to show us the way around.
Best advice? Take out life insurance. Keep away from k6 keels as half a cut mast is not very fast. Always stand up. Get Richard Stenhouse Video/DVD called ‘K16 taking control’.
What is it all about for you? Having fun with a nice lot of people.

Name: Colin Atkinson
Boat: RS700 - 973
Length of time sailed? 1 year in 700. Long long time in offshore boats and dinghies.
Best bit of 2009? I would like to say the first outing in the 700 but that was a damp squib (literally, as I swam most of the day). There have been many highlights but I think the big thing is getting to the point where I can cope with the basics and stay on the boat most of the day.
Looking forward to 2010? Continuing to improve, particularly in stronger winds. Taking part in club racing at least and possibly even try to attend some opens.
Best advice to anyone thinking of joining in? The 700 fleet at Carsington will give you the best chance of mastering a 700 anywhere in the midlands and possibly nationwide. The help and support is second to none. They have been sailing the boat long enough to know all the tricky bits and how to overcome them. With that, and knowing that when you are totally done in you can just ease the kicker and ride the boat home sitting on the racks you can't lose. See you soon!

Name: John Bumby
Boat: RS700 - 912
Length of time sailed? Around about 9 years – did RYA 1&2 at Carsington in 2001. Bought the RS 700 in May 2009 and have not regretted it for a moment.
Best bit of 2009? Loads of highs – first successful tack, first time on the trapeze with kite up, etc… the two that made the difference – the support and encouragement of the rest of the fleet and the moment when I realised that I could sail the RS 700 (the achievable challenge!)
Looking forward to 2010? Enjoying sailing with a group who are determined to have fun both at Carsington and on the class circuit – but beware, I will be sailing faster with fewer mistakes –Pete, Richard – I am coming to get you (good to have a dream!)
Best advice to anyone thinking of joining in? Just do it!!!, you will get loads of help and support from everyone. It is not easy to sail (but if it was why would you want one) – but it is far from impossible – and when it starts to fall into place it is FANTASTIC!

Name: Matt Jackson
Boat: RS700 - 982
Length of time sailed? 3 years in 700. 15 years in Dinghies. 7 years in Yachts
Best bit of 2009? Being really scared launching into 25kts off Abersoch Main beach for 'Dinghy Week' 2009 event.
Looking forward to 2010? Nationals 2010 and leaning to gybe well.
Best advice to anyone thinking of joining in? Come and find any of us at the club. We'll show you around the boat, and we'll introduce you to the fleet. Get stuck in, It's awesome!

Name: Peter Shaw
Nick Name: Pirate Pete
Boat: RS700 - 989
How long have you been sailing the 700? Since October 2005
How long have you sailed? Since a boy.
What boats have you sailed in the past? Cadet, Lark, GP14, Laser 1, Laser 2, Laser 5000, RS800, and RS700.
Why sail the 700? Because I like a challenge and apparently the Musto Skiff is easier
Best advice? Talk a good talk. The motto for my sailing is 'The older I get the better I used to be'
What is it all about for you? A great bunch of similar minded folk experiencing the same thrills and spills with an enthusiasm to see the class develop. Even as an old bloke I can compete at club level (if we get windward/leeward courses) I can compete on the friendly circuit and not look stupid (so neurotic) and go into Europe for the European Championships.

Name: Richard Allen
Boat: RS700 - 990
Length of time sailed? Too long…
Best bit of 2009? Well it probably has to be the European Championships in Carnac, France. Great weather, great racing and finding myself in the lead on the first race and taking my first ever open even win was just amazing. Going on to take second place overall was pretty special too.
Looking forward to 2010? Garda…
Best advice to anyone thinking of joining in? Be ready to get wet. It’s quite a learning curve that will include much swimming, but when it comes good it’s worth all the effort.

Name: Richard Bland
Boat: RS700 - 810 (oldie but goodie – like me!)
Length of time sailed? First sailed back in 1969, long before wetsuits were invented; I remember blah blah blah….
Best bits of 2009? Really enjoying every time I sail my 700, and getting much more confident in more breeze; the training days have been fantastic.
Looking forward to 2010? More training days, more windward leeward racing, and being able to keep up with the Captain, Yoda and Mighty more often.
Best advice to anyone thinking of joining in? Come and talk to us; we’re all completely nuts but very friendly; we all like training, blasting, swimming, racing, arguing and drinking beer together.

Name: Sean Pratt
Boat No: RS700 - 964
Length of time sailed? 2 years in a 700. 30 years in Dinghies on and off, or on and in, these days.
Best bit of 2009? Being escorted by 2 Bond Girls to receive a Scottish National Award at a posh hotel in Glasgow on the 19th November... sorry guys not even a 700 can distract from that...
Looking forward to 2010? Yes
Best advice to anyone thinking of joining in? "Don't try ..... do!" Have a laugh and drink beer outside... (did I get that right Pete?)