49er Team Fletcher-Sign - Bearly Legal
So since the Sail for Gold we only had a few days to relax and sort ourselves out before we were back down to Weymouth to get our new boat ready. We ordered the boat from Mackay boats (New Zealand) in December but by the time they had built it in April and then sent it in a container it has only just arrived, perfect timing for the Europeans…

After the Sail for Gold we had to re-plan the next couple of months since we were planning on going to the Pre-Olympics. It was a difficult time but we had to put the vang failure and Sail for Gold behind us. We needed to concentrate on the future and most importantly selection. With the re-plan done it was time to head down to Weymouth and pimp the new racing vessel out ready for the Europeans in Helsinki at the start of July.

It’s always exciting getting a new boat and getting it sorted, even though this is our 6th new 49er in 4 years! We spent 3 days in the Skandia Team GBR Performance Unit refitting the boat with Allen blocks, cleats etc, pimping it out with the latest Marlow ropes, aligning the daggerboard and rudder, fitting Shock footstraps, the list goes on and it always takes longer than you expect. Especially as we find new ways and try out new ideas of how the systems on the boat work. Finally on Sunday she was ready for her maiden voyage!

After a lot of great ideas on the name, which has to include the word ‘bear’ in, we chose ‘Bearly Legal’. A brilliant name for her that she will hopefully stick to! So we tipped a small bottle of Cava over Bearly Legal, blessed her and off we went. It was full champagne conditions to top it off, 15-18 knots, warm, sunny and flat water. The next 4 days we had a small camp with a small group. Although we would not normally choose to go sailing so close after a big regatta we needed to sort out Bearly Legal and get her tuned up ready for the Europeans. It actually turned out to be one the best camps we have had all year. The weather was exactly what we needed, we had some great high quality training, Harvey was on top form and it was laid back and fun!

By the end of the camp Bearly Legal was tuned up well and all ready to be put through her paces on the 8th July when racing begins in Helsinki for the 2011 Europeans. We leave on the 2nd July as it’s a 3 days trek in the van loaded with 2 49ers and 1 RYA rib, lets just hope the van makes it! spacer
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