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ROOT - ARYA News
12 September 2018

Marblehead’s back in WA

The Marblehead has been missing in WA for a long time but that appears to be changing. Three boats have found their way to new homes in WA, to the ARYA President & ARYA Secretary (Sean Wallis & Ross Bennett) with Glenn Dawson looking to pick up the third of the Brad Gibson designed Indie’s.

No doubt the interest in the class will see further growth in WA and it’s not surprising why.

Since the release of line plans for the Indie by BG in 2014, the option to self build a boat that is competitive against the production boats has seen the Marblehead fleet in Australia go from strength to strength providing sailors with extremely competitive racing, with the Indie sailed by Scott Condie winning the 2018 Australian Championship.

rm2

Looking at the history of the class, before the IOM Class era the Marblehead class was the one everyone wanted to sail and win in. The class lead the way in modern designs and technology, the M class had carbon masts well before it was common in full size sailing. There were many new and exciting ideas with rigs and designs, fed by creative home builder’s and innovative thinkers. People like Roger Stollery & Graham Bantock in the UK and John Amens in the US, Waliki in Germany, just to name a few. They were utilising carbon fibre in spars and hulls in an era when only the very elite of other sports were using it. The freedom of the class rules allowed designers to try ideas and test on the race course.

Today the elite of the sport are still attracted to the class, and it is possible that to some degree the level of experimentation has slowed and this allows older boats the chance to compete without being obsolete overnight. As in a great article by Brad Gibson “pimp my M” An older M class hull can be upgraded and made competitive again by adding a new fin/ bulb and some new rigs.

Yoda (David Thomas) and Lincoln McDowall have been developing M class designs in Australia for many years and have won many Australian and State championships. They mould the hulls using Infusion resin techniques which keeps the costs down when compared to Pre Preg moulding. Their current hull shapes are variations of Fuzzy Logic design (2008), the F3, F4 and F5 are all competitive shapes. Testing of various fin and bulb positions and rig performance have been the most critical to success in racing.

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There are now a number of designs regularly sailed in Australia including the Indie, Nioutram, F5, Vibe and the BG designed Grunge, just to name a few!

So if you are looking for the next challenge it’s fairly apparent that the M is the way to go.

Links:
Red Ant Radio Yachts   https://redantradioyachts.wordpress.com/
BG Sails & Design   http://bgsailsanddesign.com
BOATSetc   http://boatsetc.eu
Robot Yachts   http://robotyachts.co.uk/

 

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