The club is home to two main types of boat:
Hobie 16s: Since Hobie Alter unleashed this revolutionary beach cat on the world in the 1970s, over 100,000 have been produced. Simple, durable and easy to rig, Hobie 16s offer twin-trapeze sailing and exhilarating performance with speeds of 20 knots plus! This iconic sailboat is the world’s most popular catamaran.
Formula 18 Hobie Tigers and Wildcats: Longer and wider than the Hobie 16, these boats have a spinnaker, dagger boards and more complex rig. They really come into their own when you hoist the kite on a downwind leg and the awesome spinnaker power kicks in. Definitely not for beginners or those with heart problems.
Keep you and your crew safe on the water by observing all of the following:
- Always wear lifejackets, no exceptions.
- Always carry a fully-charged mobile phone in a waterproof pouch. Your phone should have full roaming as outside of Tai Tam Bay, China networks are often stronger than local HK ones. Have the club speedboat number (9814 7156) on speed-dail. In real emergencies, you can also call the Marine Police on 999.
- Always carry a sharp knife (a small sheath knife attached to your life jacket that can be reached with one hand is a good idea. You can buy from any dive shop).
- Always check that the bungs on your hulls are screwed tightly in before casting off. Otherwise you’re going to end up with a boat full of water.
- Always carry water, and wear sunscreen, hat and sunglasses on sunny days (if the wind dies on a scorching day, you’ll need them all!)
- Always check the forecast before you sail (log onto WindGuru, Windy and the HK Observatory 9-Day Forecast). Don’t venture out into conditions that are beyond your skills and experience. Once the T3 signal goes up, your insurance cover no longer applies
- If your boat capsizes, immediately grab onto it and don’t get separated. A Hobie on its side can travel faster than you can swim.
- Always check that the shrouds and stays on your boat are securely fastened (especially before venturing into heavy wind)
- Ensure your boat has a righting line, and learn the correct technique for getting it back up (YouTube has lots of videos)
- If your boat turns turtle, put the righting line under one hull, then get you and your crew to stand on the back corner of the boat diagonally opposite to the line. Keep pulling on the line and the boat will come up onto its side
- If you buy a second-hand boat, check that the mast is properly sealed before venturing on the water. If you capsize and the mast becomes water-logged, the boat will be nearly impossible to right!
- If you have a man overboard, immediately come into wind, and fix their position. Approach them from downwind, then as you get close, come into wind so they are next to your windward hull. Do not let them come up the middle of the boat between the hulls as this is potentially dangerous.