Today we took the 50 sqm kite out for the first time with the new, stiffer battens at the wing tips. The kite was still deforming a bit toward the middle, but the stiffer battens helped it hold shape near the flying lines. We’ve also been more successful at avoiding kite deformation by steering the boat to maintain optimal kite shape. With four people on board, we hit a top speed of 33.5 knots, and we were able to go up to three times the wind speed, clearing 30 knots in 10 knots of wind. It also helped to have Jacques Vincent, the co-skipper on the Hydroptere, take the helm for a bit. Near the end of the test, Greg hopped on the Protector to allow the kiteboat to keep speeding as the wind died. Stormy conditions persisted, but we were lucky to have only intermittent rain, while all around the edges of the Bay it appeared to be pouring. We’re now looking for a way to accurately measure windspeed at kite level, as our current wind sensor measures from about 10 feet above deck level.
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