Don’t you dare reach for a sandwich downwind – just stay in the straps and open the bailer. Hold on, because downwind sailing in monohulls may never be the same – we’re going wave jumping! Wave jumping is a technique that can be used in any planing boat (under the correct conditions) to speed rapidly through your fleet downwind.
The first time I witnessed the technique work to perfection was in Italy in 1995, while practicing for the ’96 Olympics in the 470. We were running downwind in 20 knots when, all of a sudden, our Italian training partners headed up, let their pole to the headstay, and with the skipper to weather and the crew on the wire, took off on what appeared to be a beam reach. They must be going in, I thought.
Read what happened in the full article from January 1997
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