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newbie enquiry

Printed From: RYA National Hornet Association
Category: Public
Forum Name: General
Forum Description: For topics that don't seem to fit anywhere else
Printed Date: 15 December 2018 at 09:22
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 10.18 -

Topic: newbie enquiry
Posted By: SELondoner
Subject: newbie enquiry
Date Posted: 07 June 2016 at 13:56
Hi all,

I'm currently considering a Hornet and would love some guidance as to whether it is right for me. I've detailed what I'm looking for in a boat below, please let me know where you feel the Hornet stands as I've never sailed one and it's hard to find information. 

Flexibility - I'm 42, 6'1" and 14st odd (maybe more!). I will be sailing with another man of similar, but would also like to take my kids out (with a reef if necessary) and maybe even persuade my wife who i would guess is about 8st. Can we see the Hornet working for that? 

Speed - I've been sailing some slower boats and missed the speed. According to the PN, these are fast boats, comparable with a Fireball. 

Stability - how often do they capsize, really? I'm happy to get dunked, but I'd like some control over that too if sailing with youngsters, for example. Is there a possibility to just have a more gentle pleasure sail, perhaps even stow some lunch and towels up for'ard?

Single-handed - I did search but couldn't find on the forum whether it was feasible to sail solo. I'm pretty competent and also relatively heavy (see above). 

Weight - Similarly, is it feasible to launch the boat solo if I get a lightish one? 

Fleets - finally, any clubs anywhere in the South East with a few Hornets? It's always nice to get advice and have a bit of competition, although if the PN is trustworthy it could content fairly well with Rockets, Contenders etc. 

Many thanks for any advice,


Posted By: SELondoner
Date Posted: 07 June 2016 at 13:58
To give context, other boats I'm considering are Albacore and Scorpion, and possibly older Merlin Rockets

Posted By: SELondoner
Date Posted: 07 June 2016 at 14:00
sorry, one additional question (can't work out how to edit my post):

What's the draft?

Posted By: mikethelark
Date Posted: 09 June 2016 at 13:50
Hi Toby, that's an interesting set of questions you've raised. 

I'll do my best to answer/give an opinion as under

Flexibility - well 14st plus is not an asset as a helm generally. I know because I am also 14 st (actually just under now). 14 st certainly won't work well on a Scorpion either, cannot comment on an Albacore. 14 st would work ace as a crew in a blow, so try getting your wife or kids to helm :-). More seriously, most of us are compromised one way or the other, so the answer is to give it a try.

We have one lady who crews regularly at about you wife's weight, and I doubt if her husband weighs more than 10 stone, but they manage very well, even in a bit of a blow. The answer is you are collectively about perfect, just a matter of trimming your position to suit and go for it.

Generally, the Hornet is relatively stable - I sail a Lark more regularly, and that is a 'bxxxh' by comparison. Just remember that it is a fast boat though, and it sometimes needs a degree of anticipation to keep the crew on top. 

Speedwise, it is very comparable to the Fireball, but this is not well reflected in the PY rating - ours is currently 962. It was 979 a couple of years ago.

Sailing single handed? Yes, certainly possible, I do it very occasionally, but it is never my favourite way of doing it. All up the boat weighs in at 126 Kg, so don't think it will be as easy to manhandle as a Laser.

Fleets are rare, but we have Hornets sailing at Brightlingsea, Stone, Maylandsea and Thorpe Bay off the cuff.

If you want to try one, there is an Association boat available that we lend out, currently it is at Starcross near Exmouth, where they hold the Exe Regatta with a Hornet Class start in July. Not exactly local to you but there will be number of boats there complete with raving owners (take that as you will!) who will do their best to enlighten you.

I hope that helps

You will find all necessary contact details elsewhere on the website if you want to chat, please note that I am only available on mobile for the next 10 days or so.

Mike O

Posted By: SELondoner
Date Posted: 09 June 2016 at 22:30
Many thanks Mike, I have come back to you on email

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