Laser EPS - A Racked-Up Single-hander

The EPS might have hit the target but if so, it was the wrong target
The Laser EPS stemmed from a concept originally proposed by French Tornado Olympic Gold Medallist, Yves Loday. But the actual boat was a long time coming. It would appear that more development has been done on the EPS than any other boat Laser has ever produced. Working with a small team, including veteran dinghy expert and Olympic Coach Derek Clarke, Laser have refined Loday’s original concept. The EPS is now selling in numbers, in fact Laser advised us that over 300 have been sold. The boat joins the busy race circuit along side the other Laser family members, in their Audi Quattro Cup Series. This has a good number of open meetings in Europe and the UK. The test was done on a winter's day and, despite freezing weather and a 20 knot wind, Peter Bentley managed to have a bit of fun before his hands got too cold to hold the mainsheet. At first glance the EPS is an unusual looking boat - a 'laser with wings' single-hander, and you either love it or hate it. The combination of a slightly hard-edged deck design with smooth sculptural wings makes for a strange appearance. This grows on you with time - or not - as the case may be. A highlight of the design concept is the weight equalisation system. Both the width of the wings and the size of the rig can be adjusted. Below a crew weight of 70 kg you get a small rig. For those above 75 kg there is a slightly longer, lower mast section, and a little more roach to add power. Between 70 and 75 kg the rig size is optional. As the crew weight goes up the wings come in, according to a predetermined table. Overall, the system works reasonably well. The fully battened