Early weather forecast and predictions for the Great Britain Sail Grand Prix

9 JULY 2021News
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  • Great Britain Sail Grand Prix

The Great Britain Sail Grand Prix is only a week away, and the stage is being set in Plymouth for what should be a thrilling third event of Season 2.

We've already hosted two top-class events this campaign, with Great Britain winning in Bermuda and Japan claiming victory in Italy, and the British team will be hoping to pick up another win in its home waters.

However, Tom Slingsby and Australia are aiming for a first event win of the season, while Championship leaders Spain want to extend its lead atop the leaderboard.

There's sure to be plenty more drama in Plymouth next weekend, and we've taken a look at the early weather forecast to assess what might happen in Britain's Ocean City.


SATURDAY

It’s shaping up to be a rather calm weekend in Plymouth, with expected wind speeds on Saturday of 6 km/h (3.2 knots). The NNW breeze will also see gusts of up to 22 km/h (12 knots), which could drastically increase the speed of the F50s should the gusts remain relatively constant.

The base wind speed should see three crew onboard each F50 on Saturday, following the first ever use of the three-up configuration during the Italy Sail Grand Prix in Taranto. Utilising only three crew rather than the regular five drastically reduces the weight of the boat, which means higher speeds are possible in lighter winds.

Furthermore, the wind range is likely to see each F50 configured with the light air foils and light air rudder, and also the 24 meter wing – the largest wing currently available in SailGP – to drive as much propulsion as possible in the calmer conditions.

SUNDAY

The wind speed is set to slightly increase on Race Day 2 – though likely not enough to alter the three-up configuration during racing. The early forecast suggests an ESE breeze of 9 km/h (5 knots), with gusts of up to 26 km/h (14 knots).

The foils, rudder and wing set-up is likely to remain the same as on Saturday due to the light winds, but, as was shown in Taranto, this configuration can produce some truly thrilling racing in even the lightest of breezes.

This early weather forecast will certainly have Japan pleased.

Nathan Outteridge's team won the Italy Sail Grand Prix with the three-up configuration utilised throughout nearly the entire event, as Japan showed its fantastic ability in light winds.

Spain and the United States also impressed in those conditions, but Great Britain, France and Australia struggled with only three crew onboard.

Naturally, there are no guarantees this one week out forecast will stick and the weather on race day will determine which configuration our F50s will use during racing.

However, there is one guarantee we can give you - the Great Britain Sail Grand Prix is sure to be a thriller!