Ross Bennett's Olympic Dream

Discussion in 'Laser Talk' started by Ross B, Feb 23, 2008.

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  1. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Sailing Drills Made Easy -5/11

    Occasionally US Sailing can get their act together and do something great, and this book is a fine example. Written and illustrated by Geoff Becker, who has coached St. Marys and Washington College to success. (Also did time in the Balboa Junior Program, brownie points in my book!) I've always wanted a book that has a full listing of drills, and this book covers it all. It has course drills, lots of starting drills, mark rounding, boathandeling, boat speed, tactical, and even some team racing drills. This book is definitely worth it for the aspiring sailing coach or seasoned veteran that likes to stay sharp, and would be very helpful for a group of sailors that like to get together and practice, I know it has given me some ideas for practice, even by myself. The book is well put together, spiral bound, and neatly illustrated. The only nice thing would have been nice is if the pages we're water proof/laminated, but you can't get everything you want.

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  2. Rob B

    Rob B Active Member

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    I know i can be a bit of an ass on occasion Ross, but kudos on another 2 decent posts and the math class. Next step.....Regatta Reports?
     
  3. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Memorial Day regatta coming up, on Memorial Day weekend of all times!
     
  4. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Summertime and the livin's easy -5/25

    I know I'm over a week late on this report, something about finals, CC graduation, Dad being home, and summertime laziness....

    For me summertime is always signified by the start of beercan racing, and the end of finals. Now as you guys now I haven't been able to sail much this semester because of school. So I was jonesing for some racing. I called my usual ride for big boats for the first beercan on the 15, and he said no dice this week. What a bust.... So I called a couple of others, some never answered, some said they needed a break. Then I got a hold of a friend of mine for a ride on his boat, and he said if I showed up at 4, I was gold. This is not your usual boat, Bolt is a Nelson / Marek 55, it's basically a mini-sled if you will, and definitely a step up from the Mumm 30, and it's a nice insight to what I will be getting into at Baltic. I think we crossed the line second, as far as the rating crap goes, I don't know, that stuff is beyond me.

    And then there was the BYC 66 series, of which the second was on Saturday, they said I could race with em, so that was dandy. It looked like a great day for racing, but we had that SoCal crazy weather going, and it was hotter than all hell, it must have been 90 that day, and the wind never got over 10. So it was just shy of miserable. But I really enjoyed it, racing with these guys is some of the best racing I've ever done, I'm not going to lie. These guys know a lot, not just about sailing, but things in general, and I hope to learn a lot from them and stick around for awhile if I can. The racing was a bit strange for the 66, no one else showed up in A class, so the RC had us start with B class, so we basically won A class every race. I did pit all day, which is usually one of my less favorable positions, but I really enjoyed it on Bolt and would not mind doing it again. I think the height of the day for me was when there was 9 knots DW, and we were doing 8, thats pretty cool.
     
  5. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Memorial Day Regatta, or not? -5/25

    So I was all gung ho for the Memorial Day Regatta at ABYC this weekend. When I got there, I found out that the ABYC Laser fleet was running the races, and that they would not be racing this weekend, so it didn't look good from there on out. I went to check the race office to see if any full has registered, and aside from myself there was one other person in Fulls, and that we would be racing Portsmouth. Once I told the other person what was going on, he decided to race Radials. I could have raced Radials, had I brought my rig, and some offered me the their spare rig, which was very nice, but being 175 pounds, I have no interest in getting spanked by 120 pound 14 year old junior high girls. And racing Radials would have no help with my Full Rig training, so we packed it up and went home.Oh, and the race office didn't get my registration again, and I sent it in like 9 days before hand. The USPS needs to get their act together, I mean come on, ABYC is like less than 50 miles away? How hard is it to get a letter from Mission Viejo to Long Beach? Probably go work out tonight...
     
  6. Chainsaw

    Chainsaw Brmmm Brmmm

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Bummer about memorial day regatta. Sometimes things go bad like that and the frustrating part is watching the positive opportunities of the mess slipping away.

    I bet Ben Ainslie wished he had more one on one laser racing practice the first time Robert Schiedt whooped his ass match racing style at the olympics. Pity that the other bloke and you couldn't come to an agreement and race fulls. Could have been exciting stuff. But that's the way it goes and when things deteriorate like that it is best to pack up and go do something more constructive.

    I've never had a positive experience after borrowing gear. For some reason it's always damaged or not working properly and I wonder why guys cart that kind of crap around with them telling themselves it's "spares". LOL

    But big boat racing, now that sounds like big powerful fun!
     
  7. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Rigging 101: Outhaul-6/11

    Someone on The Laser Forum asked me to post some pics of my outhaul, so I took some pictures today before I went out for practice. Please excuse the quality as they are from my camera phone. The system is pretty basic, it's taken from the Colie Sails MOJO package. The only alteration I made was to lengthen the line that line that runs along the boom, so that the single with becket is inside the triangle formed by the mast, boom, and vang, as I want the control line to be as short as possible.

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  8. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Tiller and Extension Shipping Tube- 6/11

    One of the problems with traveling to regatta's is having to ship our stuff. As Laser sailors we have it a weeee bit easy, but since we love out long carbon extensions and tillers, we gotta bring em, and here's how I do it. I found that the easiest and safest way to transport my tiller and extensions, and if you choose your battens, and Art if your into that, is to build something that looks a heck of a lot like a pipe bomb. Be warned that you will be funny looks carrying this around at the airport. I haven't done it to this one yet, but like I did for my 54 inch extension, it's a wise idea to plaster it with sailing stickers and stuff along the lines of "Olympic Sailing Equipment, Handle With Care", and airport security usually pulls back the attack dogs and finds that its not absolutely necessary to inspect your bum with rubber gloved finger. Your results may vary.

    So here's what I did. I went to Home Depot and bought one of their honkin large sections of 3 inch pipe, I think its 10 feet long(It's big enough to make two, just in case you screw it up, like I did...). I use the black stuff, same stuff I use to roll my sail, it seems pretty sturdy. At one end I used an end cap, and the other I used a a fitting that has a screw in cap. Now before I did that, I added an eyestrap at each end, through bolted with a washer on the inside, I think the bolts were 3/4 of an inch long, worked perfectly and were just long enough. I used locking nuts ( I don't remember what size the bolts or nuts were), probably coulda sealed it all, maybe next time. And from those eye straps I tie a piece of line to form a carry strap. Now my dad made the first one for me a couple of years ago, so this was a bit of a learning experience for me, one thing I've always done with pipe is to sand the heck out of each end so it's nice and rolled so it's smooth. I then learned that you have to use pipe primer and pipe cement on the pipe and the fittings. One thing to remember though is that there are different kinds of pipe, you make sure to check before your buy.

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  9. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    7mm Bzzz Mainsheet- 6/11

    People have been raving about this Bzzz line for some time. I had the opportunity to try it out, so I decided to give it a go. I've long been a user of Rooster line, and this stuff has the same no kink element going for it, so thats good. I've been using this mainsheet exclusively in my practice sessions leading up to Kiel, and so far I like it. One of my complaints is that while it is 7mm, it seems awfully small compared to the Rooster 7mm. I don't think I would want to go out in over 15 with it. An adequate pair of gloves helps this though. Hopefully I can try the 8mm in the future. Aside from that, its a great line, it's nice to hold, and it forms well to your hand. It kind of reminds me of Maffiloi Swiftcord. Overall, I like this stuff and it will be going to Europe with me.

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  10. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Extrasport Xpel H20 Spray Top- 6/12

    I have yet to wear this top in truly horrific conditions, just for a quick afternoon practice, but it seemed to do well at that. This spraytop is done by Extrasport, of lifejacket fame so you know the quality is there. I received the short sleeve version, which for a spray top is quite interesting. I would think that a top like this is best suited for a summer like day, warm air and cold water, probably nuking. One of the things I like the most is the waist adjustment, it's got this very grippy neoprene that won't ride up when you put it on, which can be hard to find, and instead of adjustment tabs, it has a shockcord on the front, in the center. And there are adjustment tabs at the arms which are nice, and at the neck as usual. This will definitely be apart of my summer attire.

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  11. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Re: Shipping tube

    I don't know whether you are planning to take your extension+tiller with you as 'carry-on' luggage, but if so, be aware that there are size limitations on carry-on luggage. The 'rules' are complicated and vary from airline to airline.
     
  12. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    yea they are funny about is as a carry on, we usually check it, as we've done in the past

    *I'll have an updated report of the past couple days of sailing soon, so stay tuned
     
  13. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Kieler Woche-7/5

    I’ve been meaning to write this the last couple of nights, but dinner and beer run late, so I might as well do it now, as some people are probably getting antsy for it. Lets see if I can do this on 1.7 liters of German and Czech beer, which is what, 5 cans of beer? I should be fine.

    As you all might have read, my scores for Kiel Week did not quite meet the high held expectations, as I only raced the first day. Well my mum decided to take it upon herself to trip and fall on the way to the bus stop and break her left arm near her wrist, and a section of her hand, which required a plate and 6 pins, and 4 different casts. There goes her life long record of never breaking a bone. So I was able to race the first day, and I did terrible. I had lost a lot of weight coming over. Before we left, I weighed about 171- 175-ish, but the trip over really did it to me, as I can loose up to 3 pounds by skipping a meal, so sitting on a plane and in airports for 20 hours will takes its effect, that and all the walking involved every day, and it took us an hour by bus to get to the Olympic Center every day, we also missed a couple of meals, as pretty much EVERYTHING closes by 8. By day one I recken I was at a slim 160 pounds, which is no good for 30 knots in a Full rig, and when I went out the second day, I went up wind for all of 2 minutes at the start line, told the RC I was heading home. It just wasn't going to work. Its interesting because it took me 39 minutes to get out to the course that that, and about 2 hours to get home, and about 6 flips. The reach there was great, a once in a life time kind of reach, especially if your come from California. You can't complain about a 30 knot reach, with flat water. The beat home was a different story, 2 hours, upwind, 30 knots, and your too damn light.So from there on out, family came first, with my moms surgery, getting her to the hospital, and all her multiple casts. But even though I didn’t get to race as much as I would have liked it was still a great experience, and one that I will never forget. It was probably one of the greatest regattas that I’ve ever been to, with food and beer stands, gear and boat bits shops, shopping, a market BMW cars for trailering, music, everything you ever needed all on site, I had no idea what to expect, but this tops it all. Being the site of the 1972 Olympic games what more would you expect? (I never did find the changing/locker rooms, but there are rumored to be showers.)

    Lastly, I want to thank my parents, my sponsors, BYC, the BYC dock crew, LMVYC, SAYC, and everyone that has gotten me this far. I might have fallen short of meeting expectations this time at Kiel Week, but there’s always next time, and I’ll make sure to give em hell at Baltic Sprint Cup, and US Laser Nationals. In the end, I might not have won Kiel Week, but I win this awesome board game tonight, so I guess that counts for something?
     
  14. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Kieler Woche: The Results-7/5

    So even though I scored 51 and 51 in my two races, every one else did pretty well, and the Americans not to shabby. In the Lasers, Tom Slingsby (AUS) took home 1st with 21 points, and Gustavo Lima (POR) with 2nd with 59 points. I have a feeling Tom should do fine the Olympics next month. And even though I failed, Zach Marks represented America very well, coming in at 103rd, with 366 points, good on ya!

    In Radials, I was thinking that Xu Lijia (CHN) was going to clean some clocks, as she was early on, but she fell to 3rd with 54 points, being narrowly beaten by Sari Multala (FIN), who came 2nd with 53 point, and Sophie de Turckheim (FRA) came in 1st with 46 points. Anna Tunnicliffe (USA) came in 22nd with 121 points, I think she had a couple of Black Flags or something thrown in there, I'm not quite sure what the story is, but I hope shes not suffering from Paige Railey syndrome, and getting all Rule 42 crazy. But I'm sure she will be firing on all pistons and will make us Americans all proud at the Olympics. Also representing USA was Sarah Lihan (USA), she did very well and came in 22nd with 153 points, great job for your first Kiel!

    Stars were a major upset, for me at least, I had totally expected Robert Scheidt/ Bruno Prada (BRA) to take first, but they took 2nd with 14.02 points. Now let that sink in, they lost 1st place by .02 points!!! I think Robert is going to be loosing some sleep over that for awhile. And 1st place went to Fredrik Loof and Anders Ekstrom (SWE), with 14.00 points Th Stars will be very interesting to watch at this Olympics, I am of course pulling for Robert Schiedt.

    The Finn fleet is always interesting to watch. For awhile it was looking like the great Rafael Trujillo (ESP) was going to take first, but he fell to 2nd with 23 points, and Jonas Hoegh-Christensen (DEN) took 3rd with 25 points. Ben Ainslie was not able to show for some reason, but his fellow Brit Ed Wright did, and took 1st with 19 points and did the Queen proud. Zach Railey (USA) came in 4th with 53 points and did very well. He seems to do better and better at every regatta, he should make us Americans very proud at China next month.
     
  15. LooserLu

    LooserLu LooserLu

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Here is a photo that is from my 2007-photo-archive and anwers your question. The green arrow shows the way to those rooms (go to the big sailing sticker/logo at the house. Between that house and the stairs is the way to the changing-rooms/WC/showers for athlets). I made this commed here for all those, that follow Ross next year and perhaps have the same problem....

    Ross next time you join Kiel, it runs better for you, okay? Travemuender Week is also a nice event. You'll see it, Ross, if you beginn your Baltic race. There you also will see the famous Flying-P-liner "Passat". Her sister "Pamir" capsized and sank at Cape Horn / South America.

    Ciao
    LooserLu
    See you in Autumn
     

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  16. Ross B

    Ross B Guest

    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Yea a friend told me the showers were over there, but I never looked, I just surfer changed the whole time! lol
     
  17. Chainsaw

    Chainsaw Brmmm Brmmm

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Good effort, Ross, and not without it's complications by the looks.
     
  18. Zoophyte

    Zoophyte New Member

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Here's wishing your #1 supporter all the very best for a speedy recovery!
     
  19. Chainsaw

    Chainsaw Brmmm Brmmm

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    Who me? haha

    the point is that unless Ross, or anyone else, refuses to do anything more then the lessons of this phase of the plan has put him in a better position to move forward. It's not up to me to decide which goals another man chooses. As far as this one goes there are the obvious lessons, like learning to to plan for the "what if" scenarios.

    I recently won a club regatta becasue my closest competition forgot the "what if" rule. He was there with his daughter who was also sailing and as the wind got up before our race she got into trouble. He was late to the start by 15 seconds because he was distracted after fluffing around with her distress - she was only six and part of the opti fleet. Was he wrong to care for his daughter?

    He started late and caught all the people he should have been able to catch, but then the gap remained the same. I remember looking back on the run, noticing that regardless of what I did the gap never changed. It should have been a close race. It should have been a game of strategy. But because he didn't think ahead he robbed me of the game we all set out to play. And he robbed himself. I wasn't too pleased when he told me the reasons afterward, but what can you do. Unless laser sailing is just another way to drink beer, then you need to plan for the obvious "what ifs". The ones that blind-side you are allowable, but not the obvious stuff.

    Apart from that, the act of doing not only makes us better, but acelerates the mind to consider options we wouldn't have seen before for problems we don't yet know about. It creates transferable mind skills that can be used on anything. The mind of someone that has organised travel to an overseas regatta possesses additional skills to the one that has not. Anything is better than doing nothing. It's up to each of us to consider what we've learned and use it move forward, to change direction or regroup. I'm not going to sit here and tell Ross to give up because I know for certain that he'll end up somewhere better than if he did nothing and assessed his efforts as useless. That's fact. Nothing personal about it. Experience and doing will make you a better man.
     
  20. Rob B

    Rob B Active Member

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    Re: Ross Bennett's Olympic Path

    Ross, have you considered taking a radial rig with you to events? It seems you have been "blown out" by heavy breeze at a couple lately. At least if you had a radial rig you could switch fleets at registration if it looks like it's gonna blow and get some time in the boat sailing in a big, competitive fleet.
     
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