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Soling 2551 underway to face the Europeans in Castiglione
While most of the people thinks on the white powder train their legs for one more sailing season, in England a team of builders from Petticrows also rushes to finish the Soling ISAF number 2551 for team GER 1. The owner proud to acquire his third Petticrows and close involved with the development of the one at the factory went for a visit at the yard and wrote the following report:

Miaaauuuu...a new Mauzi (cat) is on the way...

Latest news from Petticrows: I sold my boat to a new Soling-family-member at Bodensee and now we prepare my new boat at Petticrows in Burnham-on-Crouch.
Arriving late Wednesday, I checked my baby this morning...looks really good, even though it`s the same...nearly...but new... ;-)

There are some very small detail changes to make the boat more “sexy”.

The mast step is newly designed, we had a big change from the last boat; everything was okay, but now it looks better, it is even inside the mast... :-)

The hiking rope for the bowman now has a block through the deck; so it runs more smoothly and the rope will not be damaged.

We will try a new boom lift; a bit smaller, but it will have hopefully enough power.

There are a lot of rumors going around about the Petticrows Soling and I want to clarify some of this.

Some people say, since we started sailing the Petticrows Soling, we haven‘t won a title. That`s true, but the quality of the classes sailors is improving, more friends from overseas attend at the championships, and believe me, all these guys know how to sail a Soling.
One very important point: a lot of teams now “copy” our trim with the loose shrouds, some more and others less. Due to this, our advantage from 2005 and so on was slowly gone. Peter Hall, the twice world champion in the last two years, eased the pressure of his shrouds every year a little bit more and goes better than ever. 2007 in Argentina, he couldn`t believe our trim, which is a bit more extreme compared to the others, but he started to try.

I heard that the boat should be slower, as the center gravity is too high due to the very stiff deck...Interesting since a stiffer deck is not automatically heavier; it depends on the way it is built. Tim Tavinor, the owner of Petticrows and a famous Finn sailor and Dragon World champion, wants to build the Soling in the highest possible quality! This made him so extremely famous in the Dragon class and so approximate 80% are sailing Petticrows Dragons. So he decided for a more expensive way and is using a modern and real high quality resin. This material became better over the years but the very good one has also a higher price; nice effect is the stiffer deck with the right weight in the rules.
The center gravity is therefore the same like before.

But in these past days we were by far the heaviest crew and I was nearly 200 kilos. Probably one reason could be that I lost around 70 kilo and my crew also a bit; so different basis to compare boats.
The 2005 Worlds and Europeans were sailed in stronger winds than the average conditions are: 2-6 bft. This was our most successful year, where we used our new trim the first time.
As most of you may know and remember, we had never been “hot shots” in light air; it`s not our favorite condition, but we have to deal with.

Another reason may be in the psychological factor: some people believe that a boat with such an outstanding quality MUST be faster, but this is not possible in the Soling class. We are one-design and so you cannot get any speed-advantage from a new boat, BUT everything on the boat works in a wonderful easy way and Tim (with his team “Major Tom”, Paul and some more) could fulfill our wishes about a “simple”, but beautiful Soling.

Here a short summary of our first two Petticrows seasons:

In 2011 we changed the boat and mast (both Petticrows; the mast is bending to the aft in the same way like Abbott and the top is a little bit softer sideways, what is very good for most of the guys) and used the Doyle sails. At the strongest and most competitive world championship since the Olympic days we were leading after three races and finished 4th at the end.

At the West German championship we finished second in light to medium conditions.

2012 we changed to Fritz sails (the Godzilla-spi is quite famous now and the sails are looking good and fast) and were leading the Omega Cup in light air into the last race. At the end we finished second.

During a light weather and really challenging European championship, we won the windy race, had some top places and before the last day we had been third European boat...okay, the last light day was not ours... ;-)

The Erich Hirt Preis in Starnberg was also light air and we were again leading after 4 races; then we quit for some reasons.

Finally I can say that I am happy to have changed to Petticrows, we have the highest quality you may have in our class, a beautiful and fast boat keeping the fight for top places, and in addition some new friends in UK.


The European Championship will be tuff contested again like the past one in Denmark with overseas sailors trying to steel the top place at the podium although they can´t be European Champions...
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Article wrote by Roman Koch
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Wednesday  April  25 of 2018