Laser Pico - We Love Her

The sweet tale of MadforSailing's holiday romance with the Laser Pico
To regard the Pico as a beginner's boat would seriously underrate this very competent single-hander from Laser. Designed by Olympic medallist Jo Richards, the Pico offers a combination of qualities rarely found in one boat. A new manufacturing process (sandwich rotomoulding) and a top production team have come together to produce a boat so simple to sail, that a child could master it in a day. For the MadforSailing review, Peter Bentley spent not one but three days at Minorca Sailing. This is just one of many sailing schools throughout Europe to adopt the Pico as the principal single-hander for beginners. Sailing the Pico in a mixture of wind conditions, it quickly became clear that trouble free sailing was obviously a priority at the design stage. Unless you want adrenaline-rush, high performance racing, there is little to fault the Pico. Her MadforSailing Overall Rating reflects that fact, though the score is also dragged down a little by the lack of a comprehensive racing circuit. The new construction system (based on a process we've called sandwich rotomoulding) ensures durability and stiffness at a modest cost. Bob Gelfs at Minorca Sailing has been involved in prototype evaluation, and reckons the Pico is the nearest thing he's seen to an indestructible boat. All the fittings, including the dagger-board and rudder, follow standard Laser practice and work well. The Pico is extremely easy to rig, stable and simple enough for almost anyone to get in and sail away. She tacks easily and is unlikely to sit in irons, an excellent attribute for a beginner's single-hander, and one which some of the competition conspicuously lacks. For more advanced users, the Pico also has a responsive nature. Off-wind, she accelerates well in a decent amount of breeze, and offers more excitement than expected. The Pico can carry a crew