It has been a true pleasure and the achievement of a lifelong dream to sail with you in the Solent on Regina Laska and achieve the RYA Yachtmaster Certificate of Competence.
Finding "it" by day! All Yachtmasters from The Solent know what I am talking about!
I have sailed with you in the past on challenging Reginasailing passages like crossing both the Bay of Biscay and the North Sea and other adventurous journeys like sailing in Ireland and Scotland on Regina Laska, but this was the first time for me to sail with you as an instructor.
Working hard with charts during the Yachtmaster Prep in The Solent!
I have to say that I was really intimidated by the prospect of a two days exam in challenging waters like those in The Solent with a heavy, “slow-turning” yacht like Regina Laska and since day one of the leg I realised that I was in your hands. I decided to trust your judgement and your experience in bringing me from where I was to where I should have been in order to be worthy of being an RYA Yachtmaster.
Ships of all sizes sail in close quarters in The Solent. Sometimes very close, so we make good use of our ColReg knowledge of sound signals and signs at day and night.
My trust was repaid in full.
I have really, really appreciated your three phased approach to the Yachtmaster:
Long passage (Cuxhaven to Dunkerque) with all electronics switched ON. Focus on passage planning and execution with electronics and the rest.
All electronics such as plotter and radar were ON during the first phase. Just as I also had my patch ON against sea sickness!
The patch (Scopoderm) really helps me and "Papa Grekko" (the bucket) was only a fellow since I couldn't believe it that I did not get seasick any more and carried it around as a habit.
Nice relaxing sailing along the Dutch coast.
An evening watch on aft deck.
Sailing downwind westbound into the sunset.
Good winds broke the record of speed through water (STW) even without current: 12.9 knots through the water!
One week sailing on short passages with electronics switched OFF. Focus on chart navigation, Course to Steer, Estimated Position, etc.
New: Looking at the compass instead of the plotter!
Changing courtesy flags in the early morning with radiation fog.
When the radiation fog lifted, look what it revealed for some old seamen taking photos of this very special mark!
Passing the white cliffs between Dover and Brighton.
Time for some Gennaker trimming in the weak winds towards The Solent.
At a buoy in Chichester Harbour at Itchnor.
Chichester Harbour at Low Water.
One way to get more miles for your Yachtmaster: You just anchor in tidal waters, make 2.3 knots through the water, while Speed over Ground is 0! Leave it on all night and you will have a couple of more miles in your logbook, if needed! ;-) haha!
Harbour manoeuvres, sail handling and exercises in The Solent, familiarisation with the sailing grounds, currents, tides etc.
Harbour manoeuvres in Cowes, Isle of Wight, The Solent. As many as we wanted... We got better for each turn!
Good night, Cowes!
Preparing blind navigation in The Solent.
Always time for a been in the pub in the evenings!
Or a Mocca in the mornings! (I'm Italian and despite living in Switzerland, I still prefer my real Italian Mocca to the Nespresso made in Switzerland...)
I could really see myself improving during the three phases and slowly gaining confidence and mastery. By the end of the two weeks I felt a strong convergence of all concepts and skills gained and my confidence level was up to the roof. Once again, really well done!
I was ready for
The Yachtmaster Exam
The night before the exam we made ourselves a real good old punch following the old recipe of Lord Nelson's ship VICTORY, which we, of course, visited while in The solent.
Explaining the weather of today to our examiner Allan. I juse the Weather Fax we got from our Furuno Weather Fax machine onboard.
Getting an exercise from our examiner Allan.
Man Overboard!!! When you expect it the least!!!! I am rushing up the companionway to find out what has happened, taking over command and organising the ship for a Man Overboard recovery!
Night navigation during our exam. You better know what the three red lights mean...!
The watch became my best friend during the exam, since we only used the watch and boat speed as well as the sounder and compass for navigation. Impressively accurate!
Allan telling us we have all passed! Hurray!
Another aspect of your instructor side that I particularly appreciated was your ability to detect everyones’ weak spot and to work tirelessly and patiently to bring us up to standard. With our crew it was challenging as we all had different weaknesses. Nevertheless you succeeded in full and I’m really grateful for that.
This experience made me appreciate you not only as a great skipper but also as a great instructor and to anyone willing to take the challenge of becoming a Yachtmaster I can recommend the experience with Regina Laska 110%.
The track we sailed from Cowes to Lymington after having passed our Yachtmaster exams!
Our track zoomed in!
As our track was shown on Marine Traffic. We sure told the world that we had passed in a pure marine way!
Lorenzo Murzilli, Italian living in Switzerland, joining the RYA Yachtmaster Prep course Leg 5-2019 from Cuxhaven to Lymington, The Solent/UK.