First foiling steps – Sailing instructors try the Flo1
On the last evening of spring, representatives of sailing school De Veenhoop came to Biddinghuizen to get acquainted with the Flo1. Siblings Erik and Marije run the sailing school, that was founded by their father. We spoke to Erik following his test sail.
Erik used to teach children aged 6-16 years old in Optimists, RS Feva, Splash and more. He would teach at 1-9 week sailing camps that the sailing school offers for the children to get their certification.
Sailing the Flo1 was a positive experience for Erik. “There was not a lot of wind, so I did not spend a lot of time foiling. During the sail the Flo1 hull had picked up some water, so at some point it got too heavy to fly properly. However, I had a great time.”
In the two hours that Erik and Marije spent on the water they could get a good impression of the feeling of sailing the Flo1. “The biggest difference with sailing a normal sail boat was the speed, but more importantly, the speed perception. It was clearly more spectacular than on a keelboat, where you would not be able to exceed your hull speed. Erik was surprised to notice the Flo1 was comfortable and easy-to-sail. “I noticed I was planing quickly and able to reach high speeds with little wind. I sailed a Splash during a yellow weather alert the other day. Working very hard I was able to reach the same level of perceived speed than with a gentle breeze on the Flo1. Stable foiling would take a little more time though.”
Erik believes that foiling is the future of sailing. The leading sail classes, such as America’s Cup and Vendée Globe are already foiling, with more to follow soon. Also, going faster means more spectacular and exciting. “It will take a while before foiling is great among the masses, but people like me who follow the great classes will be foiling more and more.”