Musto Skiff

Sailor Profile: Bruce Keen. 2010 UK National Champion Bookmark and Share

Here is a Q&A that was completed by MUSTO Skiff UK National Champion Bruce Keen.

What got you into the MUSTO Skiff class?
I had been sailing Lasers for over 10 years and I was getting bored and wanted a new challenge. There were a few MUSTO Skiffs sailing at Stokes Bay, so the class seemed like an obvious choice.

What have you sailed previously?
Laser, Laser II (crewing), a few one-design keelboat classes, Optimist and Dabchick (a South African single-handed youth class, with a main and jib)

How old, tall and heavy are you? (note:completed in 2010)
32, 186cm, 83kg

How much training did you do in the MUSTO Skiff in the year prior to the nationals win?
In winter one day most weekends. In summer: Wednesday evenings and one day on the weekend. I also try and do all the open meetings on the southern circuit.

Did you do any specific training exercises to improve your boatspeed & handling?

This often depends on what the conditions are like, who else is sailing and what I feel I am currently weak at.

- Speed/tuning runs - Line up alongside another boat (or more), so that you both have clear air. Sail as fast you can, then stop and compare settings/technique in order to get the slower person faster. Good for working on boatspeed and settings by comparing to others.

- Tacking and gybing practice - Practice tacking/gybing by yourself. You can work on improving your technique with the freedom to experiment and to get it wrong (unlike a race situation).

- Match race tacking practice - The boat in front tries to cover the boat behind and the boat behind tacks to break cover. The exercise stops when the boat behind passes the boat in front. You can quickly see if you are tacking faster or slower than the other boat. This is pretty good for fitness as it is very tiring after a few minutes.

- Short course sailing - Find two marks, one to windward of the other, maybe 200m apart. Sail around them as you would in a race. Make sure you adjust your controls at each mark rounding like you normally would. This can be very tiring after 10 hoists and drops, but good for working on boat handling and fitness.

- Trigger pulls - Line up alongside one (or more boats) with your sails out as you would on a startline. The leeward boat counts down from 10 and you only sheet on at zero. Good for figuring out what is the fastest way to accelerate off the startline.

- Holding position - Find a mark and try and stay near it without drifting sideways or going backwards or tacking. Good for keeping your position on a crowded startline

- Pin end starts - Find a mark and set your watch to 2 minute count down. Line up in position with 1 minute to go and try and have a perfect pin-end start. Sail for 30 seconds then head back to the mark and repeat. This is good for working on your boat handling and judging where you need to position yourself to allow for tide/wind drift in order to get the perfect start.

What were your rig settings (Rake, tensions (shroud & lowers) spreaders (length & deflection))?

Rake: 7255mm (referenced by measuring 6110 to top of gnav fitting)

Rig tension: Shroud 29, Lowers 12

Spreaders: Length 395mm (see photos)

Deflection: 100mm spreaders are set up as in photos. Inner holes for spreader are as per the defaults on website.

What did it feel like to lift the trophy at the prize giving?

Do you have any sponsors?
No, but I am open to sponsorship offers!

What other hobbies do you have?
Windsurfing, cycling, consuming coffee and cake

Are you married / have any kids?
I am married to Rachel. No kids.

What is your favourite band/music?
The music I listen to most would be classical flute music ... not out of choice, but because my wife is practising for a flute diploma!

What's your favourite food?
Roast Lamb, Dark Chocolate.

What is your day job?
Technical Sales Manager for Ascom. I assist with the technical side (IT/Telecommunications) of selling software/hardware for monitoring and optimising mobile networks.

Other sailor Profiles

Daniel Henderson 2011 World Champion

Richard Stenhouse Multiple Champion

Bruce Keen. 2010 UK National Champion

Rick Perkins. 2007 UK National Champion

Ian Trotter. 2005 UK National Champion

Kev Anderson. 2004 UK National Champion

Gabriel Wicke. 2002 European Champion

Chips Howarth 2001 European Champion



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