June 2019 Report: Max Steele


I am starting to get too big for the RS Tera, meaning that it is important to start considering what boat to transition into for next season.  For me, the single-handed boat is a choice between a Laser 4.7 and an RS Aero. I had a test sail in the Laser.  It was really windy, 25 knots, meaning that sailing the boat was great fun, especially reaching.  The following week, I tried out one of the very Aeros that was used by the Olympic Evaluation team. This was fun too, mainly because of the massive Aero 9 sail. This time it was very light wind, however the boat still went fast. The Aero was much more tippy than the Laser, bringing some close calls at times.  Both boats were very fun, giving me a hard choice on what boat to sail next.  My NeilPryde kit is perfect for either boat.

Feva Nationals and Inland National Championships:

I have also been transitioning into the RS Feva, as a double handed boat.  My partner Joe Warwicker and I went to the UK National championships in Wales.  We were very pleased to qualify into the Gold fleet as this was our first major regatta together, and achieve 4 top-10 race results, despite learning how to deal with some rigging issues, and with very little training beforehand. 

At the Inland Nationals just two weeks later we again achieved 4 top-10 race results and ended the regatta in the top-20 nationally.   It was perfect wind on the first day, with perfect amounts of sunshine for me (really hot).  The 1mm NeilPryde neoprene was ideal.  We had some good starts on the first day, followed by good tactical decisions, giving us a 16th place at the end of that day. The following day was colder and windier, meaning that we had to put the shrouds one hole down to help us keep the boat flat.  Unfortunately, we dropped down to 19th place, due to good sailing by other boats, and being protested by another boat. You win some, you lose some, but what’s important is that we learnt from our mistakes, and hopefully we will continue to improve at the World Championships in Italy later in July.

Tera Preparation:

Later in July, the Tera Inland National Championships is taking place. Last year in the Sport sail, I managed to win the event. This year, I will try to maintain that title, but in the Pro fleet, consisting of harder sailors.  Doing well at this event will significantly help me win the World Championships in Ljungskile Sweden. This is my ultimate aim of the season. I have been training through the winter squads, but it has been complicated by also preparing for the next class of boat. 

Being sponsored by Neil Pryde Sailing really helps me train all year round, as it keeps me a good temperature, and allows me to move freely in the boat, which is the ideal clothing you need for major regattas. Hopefully all the opportunities I have been given, and all the time I spent training will pay off in Sweden, and in other regattas to come.

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