Nick was also 2nd in 2009 (very light), and 1st in 2010 (Force 3-4) so does consistently well! Nick writes:
Thanks for your email and interest in ORIGAMI in the Round The Island race, As you see it was pretty breezy (25-30 knots) but it was the sea state that was exceptional for the amount of breeze. I've raced a lot over the years in the Solent area and am now not surprised when these seas build. We were fairly close in at St Catherines point (inside the tide race) where the seas can get really nasty indeed.
The boat was as usual fantastic. I've had it for 3 years now and am still learning, but never felt there was going to be an issue in those seas. I was careful to hit the back of the waves when surfing square on so that all 3 hulls took the de-acceleration equally, the buoyancy of the middle hull pulling the bow up just as you were watching the outer hulls go under water! At times we were surfing faster than the wind speed I think, the main and spinnaker were backwinding and all the sheets hanging limply! A very strange sensation in that amount of breeze!
We sailed upwind with a reefed main (deep reef) and shook it out at The Needles. The spinnaker is a reaching kite from a Melges 24. I have found that these suit the F27 perfectly, and despite being a good deal smaller than your designed size they are very effective, The Melges guys get through kites very quickly and its easy to find them.
In the image we are probably doing about 20 knots, and we covered the 28 miles around the back of the island in well less than 2 hours! I had two very good sailors (whom I have sailed with from when we were kids) with me from Burnham On Crouch (on the east coast of the UK where the boat is based).
We sail Origami from Burnham annually (about a 700 mile round trip with the races) and do the Round the island and Rodney Pattissons Regatta, always good too see + race against him, still a great enthusiast . There are two other F-27s locally to us in Burnham now. Without exception everybody (and plenty of very good sailors too ) who comes on the boat are amazed by it! I race it like this with my mates one week, deliver it back 200+ miles the day after and then myself and family use it for cruising, and the boat goes into "caravan mode " as we call it !