Grafham Water

Jim Saltonstall looks at one of Britain's most popular inland venues
Today, Grafham Water Sailing Club is one of the most popular inland water venues, hosting many major events for both dinghies and small keelboats. Situated just off the junction between the A1 and the A14, it has easy access from most corners of Great Britain. The club is well known for hosting major open meetings and Inland Championships. The clubhouse is situated on the south shore of Grafham Water, in the village of Perry, with great facilities, both ashore and afloat. The race management team is very good, with a deep pool of knowledge and experience, and you can expect good quality racing. Accommodation in the area is at something of a premium, but there are bed and breakfast places within a radius of ten miles, so as always - book early to save disappointment. Contact the club for the latest information on these and camping and caravanning sites. Race Areas Grafham Water is large enough to run three race areas. These are situated one to the west, one in the middle, and one to the east, with the clubhouse situated to the south of the middle course, you have easy access to all three race areas. Western Area This is the largest of the three, where the lake is at its widest north and south. Wind Direction 000-090 degrees: As with any landlocked venue, the wind is going to be unstable both in its direction and velocity, so identifying wind shifts is critical, knowing when you are being either lifted or headed on both tacks. Try to establish whether or not there is a pattern to the shifts in both their timing and angle. Are they five, ten, 15 or 20 degree shifts, are we going to tack on most of them as we might in a