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    Re: The mathematics of tacking downwind
    From: Bill B
    Date: 2016 Jul 29, 15:00 -0400

    On 7/29/2016 2:38 PM, Francis Upchurch wrote:
    > The racing sailors here haven't got time for maths , slide rules or
    > computers. they feel the wind on their face and see the tide and
    > somehow, by majic (inbuilt algorithms based on years of experience? they
    > get it right and take the most efficient and winning tack. Aren't humans
    > ( and no doubt many other species) so good at this kind of thing? We
    > seem to be inherently good at "lining things up", in a geometrical
    > sense, e.g arrows and javelins). All majic to me.
    
    Maybe dinghy sailors, but any *serious* racer 30 ft or over is looking
    at polar diagrams, then developing target speeds for their own boat,
    crew and sail suit. These are plugged into (or derived from) an on board
    computer that displays speed, target speed, VMG, suggested course etc,
    on one or an array of electronic display pods mounted near the base of
    the mast.
    
    Not exactly pipe smoke or wetting a finger :-)
    

       
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