5 Tips: Getting a Good Start – and the 60 Seconds After That

If a good start is the key to good race, the last tack into the start and the first 60 seconds out of it are crucial, explains top America’s Cup sailor Terry Hutchinson. From Yachting World.

Photo from Yachting World

The subtleties of a good start are more complicated than identifying a good spot to leeward and starting next to someone who is going to give space and be happy to be rolled – although they both seem to help.

For me, consistent starting comes from repetition of the process and having a team that is working together without the need for constant communication. Simple buzzwords such as ‘kill high, aggressive turn here’, or ‘smooth tack to upwind’ are just a few things that help to get the point across succinctly.

But a good start is as much about boat positioning before the start as it is about the 60 seconds after the start. For this piece we are going with the concept that a nice hole has been carved out for the slingshot.

Within this scenario I want to focus on a port approach and the 60 seconds after the start.

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