Downwind with BWR
The innovative Elvstrøm Sails ‘Blue Water Runner’ is truly ground breaking. It performs the role of three sails in one.
Designed as effectively two Yankee sails on a single luff cable, it works as a light up-wind genoa, a reaching ‘Yankee’ when the two-ply sails are together. When running dead-downwind it can be peeled open into ‘goose-winging’ mode, doubling the sail area to increase boat speed. Then trimmed and poled out like a spinnaker, or used without a pole.
The Blue Water Runner is the creation of Jeremy White, Elvstrøm Sails UK Loft Manager, in response to clident requests for a downwind sail to give the thrill of surfing downwind offshore, and easy to control and stow quickly when wind conditions changed, without needing to leave the cockpit! Jerry came up with the vision for a sail for family sailors and blue water cruisers who want to sail downwind, for days on end if needed, with great speed, stability and safety. Another 3 in 1!
The twin running sails are hoisted furled in-front of the headstay, and can be un-furled and furled when required and left up when not in use. There is no need for a snuffer and it is controlled from the cockpit.
In very light airs the ‘BWR’ can be sheeted in hard and used as a ‘Code 0’ type genoa. Being lighter than a conventional furling genoa it can be flown in the lightest of winds. It makes an excellent reaching sail in heavier airs, with the sheets cracked. When the breeze comes from behind the boat, the twin-ply sail is opened apart and spread out in-front of the wind, providing a large surface area like a spinnaker. If the breeze heads, the windward sail can be flipped back over to join its leeward wing, where it happily locates itself under the pressure of the wind, and you can continue sailing on a broad reach.
If the breeze is coming up or night falls, you can reduce the size of the BWR by simply taking in on the furling system. Or, totally roll it away and leave it up and furled until conditions change, with no need for anyone to struggle on the foredeck.
When sailing dead downwind, it is most efficient to drop the mainsail. The huge sail area benefits from not being shadowed by the main, and you can safely steer anywhere without the risk of an involuntary gybe! Rolling downwind is prevented by gently easing the tack line. The BWR oscillates without transferring to the hull, helping to dampen any rolling moment.
The sail received an extended test on board Diane Whittingham’s Halberg Rassy 40, Engima during the 2016 ARC+ Rally where she finished 2nd in Class.
A fact on board professional skipper and RYA Instructor, Paul Weinberg, attributes “almost solely to the fact we were using your Blue Water Runner. It performed well in the light conditions and gave us a competitive advantage. We were able to use the sail in wind angles of 130 to 180 degrees. Generally, in 5 knots of wind we managed 3-3.5 knots, around 6 knots in 5-8 knots of wind and over a steady 11 knots wind speed we were clocking 7 to 8 knots plus. We carried the sail up to 20 knots, and on one occasion we were caught out in a squall of 30 knots gusts, so we reefed it then!”
It is constructed from Dimension CPP 3.5pz polyester storm spinnaker fabric. Polyester is used for durability as nylon can be easily destroyed by sunlight, and with blue water cruising events such as the ARC rallies, the BWR sail may be used for days on end.
Jeremy White comments, “I wanted to create a sail that enables the chance to surf down waves, but with the knowledge that with a pull of a line from the safety of the cockpit the sail can be safely stowed.
I have so many customers asking should they buy a spinnaker, an asymmetric, plus running sails. With the BWR I believe now all three boxes are ticked. That means our customers can reduce their overall sail wardrobe and save money.”
Revolutionise your downwind sailing now. Call Jeremy on 02380 450 430