The idea is that the weight of the crew on what will become the windward side will stop the boat from simply flipping upright and straight over
again. As the sail starts to come out of the water, the superhero on centreboard now needs to leap off to the stern or bow, or he risks the boat capsizing again on top of him regardless. The bow is the
best place to aim for, but if you get it wrong then the boat will try to sail over your head. The stern is safer.
We all capsize occasionally, and learning to react quickly to get upright again is as much part of sailing as any other skill. If you can stop your
boat doing any more than just laying flat for a moment or two, you can recover far more quickly and safely than if you allow it to go upside down. The trick is to know what to do, and to do it fast. And
talk to each other while you are doing it - especially if you cannot see each other.
Remember, all boats capsize at some time or other. You should consider it your duty to capsize often enough that it doesn't feel like a disaster when
it occurs, and that you don't feel nervous about the prospect of it happening again. It's all part of the fun.
Before anyone sues us, the comments above about it being OK for the crew to belly flop into the mainsail only apply if you have a dacron (white)
mainsail, and not if you have a kevlar (grey) mainsail. We have determined empirically that if you land on a kevlar mainsail feet first you will go straight through it leaving a very big hole. If you
belly flop onto it, the trapeze hook goes through it leaving a very small hole. These sails are £750 a throw so we can't recommend either of these. The best we can suggest is to dive past the helm's head
so you go in the water behind the boat, or do that unclipping thing and just climb down. Or just don't use the kevlar main on a windy day. You know it makes sense :-)
For the very mad, there's also the Eskimo Roll. Personally I wouldn't be caught dead doing it for fear that I might end up, er, dead.
Thanks to David Hope for the pictures. Can you get some of me with the boat upright next time please