Canadian Sailing Team members Danielle Boyd and Erin Rafuse stopped into the Sail Canada office today, giving us the chance to catch up with the girls on their progress in the new 49er FX; the new Olympic skiff, similar to the 49er but designed for women.
Fresh off the Highway from Florida (boat on the roof and all) the girls are excited about their new rig. They've been logging lots of hours in the FX since the beginning of February. 2012 North American 49er champ Daniel Inkpen worked with the girls to get them accustomed to the boat.
A challenge compared to the radial, it's much faster and requires the added dimension of team work to the racecourse, something new for Rafuse. "The boat is fun, new, exciting and something I'm not used to," explains Erin, excited to do some fleet racing this spring. "I think everyone's pretty excited about it, it's a lot more managable than the 49er, it's good learning."
"The fleet is small but challenging with about 6-8 boats" Boyd tells us, "in Florida there were boats primarily from Canada and the US along with one from Italy, and one from Brazil."
Planning on being in Kingston for the majority of the summer, the girls hope to get an FX training camp going in Halifax in the spring and potentially Worlds in France come the fall.
To follow their progress you can watch for them on twitter through @dannie_boyd and @erin_rafuse.
Lots of luck to the Girls for their hectic spring, summer and fall!