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It's Now Or Never: Preparation is key to success for Appleby and Tobutt
8:55am Friday 18th January 2013 in Sport
THIS week has taught us the importance of preparation and attention to detail.
We are learning that there many elements to a successful sailing campaign – boat handling, racing tactics, fitness, and one of the most important – equipment preparation and maintenance.
We received a timely – and very cold – reminder of this as a small but vital piece of rope snapped, unceremoniously dumping us both in the middle of Portland Harbour while the boat sailed off on its own for about 20 metres before turning itself upside down.
Following a very quick swim, and getting the boat back the right way up, we limped back to shore.
While nothing major or irreplaceable had broken, having something like that happen in a race would ruin an event and waste a lot of time and effort.
Even this incident cost us valuable training time as we spent the next day working on the boat.
On closer inspection, we had damaged a couple of key parts of the boat that needed replacing. With some help from the guys at Bussells Chandlers we were able to get the boat back in working order but ran out of time to get out sailing.
Hopefully we have learnt our lesson and will, in the future, be doing this work before it creates problems on the water.
We were putting the boat back together in the dark and rain, using our car headlights to see what we were doing, which is not a sustainable way of operating.
It will be great when we do get set up with proper workshop in a container at the sailing academy so we get boat work done quickly and make the most of the time we have.