British Sailing Team’s Ben Saxton hangs out on the Vampire

Whilst in Weymouth for Speed week, we had the pleasure of catching up with Nacra 17 World/European Champion and Rio Olympian Ben Saxton – After his morning of training with the British Sailing team there was a window of opportunity to get Ben out on the Vampire!

It’s fair to say the thing’s an absolute beast, genuinely the best sail I’ve had in a long time. Ben Saxton

vampire ready to launch

This was Thursday afternoon, a few hours after Simon and Kyle had set the winning Speed week run and the breeze had continued to decrease, now only registering 10-12 knots on the harbour wall.

We were doing 22 knots upwind and 27 knots downwind in about 10-12 knots of breeze!

Ben goes on to pay tribute to the set-up of the boat which has been calibrated to make it very effective in foiling conditions. Much less breeze and the spinaker would have been needed for optimum VMG downwind whilst the straight boards would have been needed for upwind.

The consistency we now have is testiment to the hard work and engineering by William Sunnucks and Graham Eeles over the past 4 years giving the sailors a solid platform to push with confidence.

mid gybe
Mid gybe on the vampire in 10-12 knots TWS

Saxton was a natural which came as no surprise given the success he has on foiling catamarans at the highest level, he also has Moth experience which helps with understanding the unique characteristics of this boat.

It doesn’t always go to plan though, and a little rudder ventilation during a bearaway overloaded the port board lockdown mech which released, half an hour in the ShockSailing workshop and all was working again!

Keep up to date and support Ben and Nikki in their 2020 campaign, check out www.bensaxtonsailing.com and their facebook page.

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Ben and Nikki Nacra 17 training in Japan

We hope to see more from Ben and Kyle together on the Vampire during 2019…
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