Italian footys !

I am happy to give notice that few days ago ( sunday 15 march 2009 ) , for the very first time a footy race has been held in Italy.
Vercelli model yacht club , very kindly agreed to add to their race calendar our small boats , and most probably other clubs in the north of Italy will follow the wake soon.

Even if the race has been almost symbolic ( three footys only ) , “marketing” effect has been very succesful due to the fact that the race has been held within a mixed regatta of other model yacht classes.
Interest to these " slipper boats" from many high level modeller has been very high, and many of them have been really surprised to see under their noses that so small hulls are able to sail fast, and point high.

Among many top modellers, there was also the very famous Claudio Vigada, designer and builder of the 1:10 model americas cup winner, as well currently holder of guinnes record for greatest distance sailed by a rc model : 157 km ( 97 miles ! ).

Sunny weather, light wind, very good lunch ( cake and coffe included ! ) and many good bottles of red wine helped to “lubricate” discussions, questions and proposals.

A smart race officer ( thank you Teddy ! ) after initial starts, very kindly allowed us to race on smaller racing area.

During the morning due to the fact that we have been racing among 1m model, our models were almost out of sight when rounding windward buoy.

One of the partecipants - Livio Rovaretto - showed us his “secret weapon” to overcome the problem : an “eye booster cap” ( see attached picture :slight_smile: )

Livio is also the proud designer and builder of “Lory” a fiberglass footy.
Simon Hancock , a professional yacht captain currently living here, showed us a very well built kittywake “Panda 4x4”

All, considered, a very pleasant day, and - I hope - the first of many other future events …



Congratulations Flavio :zbeer:

A small start, yes, but an important one. When people see how well Footys can sail, they get hooked. When that happens, Footys multiply!

I’m looking forward to seeing you again in Birkenhead, but it looks like a couple people I thought would make up team USA have backed out, so I might not be able to participate in your cup race.

Maybe I could team up with the South African guys, since my Cobra (the car version) was built there? It would be fun to see Cobra and Mongoose working together…we’d just have to give Mike a better boat than Moonshadow :wink:

All the best…Bill H

Hi Bill,

many thanks for your comments about our firs step here…

A small story about our D-day :

I have given to my new friends a “footy promotional booklet” showing models, plans, class rules and pictures of peoples and events.

Due to the fact that many of them are very skilled modellers, they immediately started to ask me about details, and about comparison between different design options ( balsa / plastic, round bilge / chine hull).

Among these pictures there was a nice shot of a well known american guy proudly showing a nice round bilged model :wink:

I explained them that this guy, is usually showing his stern to other partecipants, adding that he is now building hard chine balsa models.

Sipping red wine, they easily clarified all design questions : "if this fella is so fast as you say, we all should forget round bilge plastic boats. Lets start build italian cobras too "


About team racing :
yes may be that this year we will not be able to have real “national” teams, but we hope that this will be an additional booster to greater international entries to future GP.

If I will not be able to have other itlian footy to entry Euro GP, I could join Charles Mann as an “canadian-italian mixed team” :slight_smile:

All the best to you too



Great news about your recent regatta. I hope there will be many more. I don’t think it will be long before you have an increased number of skippers as Bill says. Knowing first hand how well “Folgore” performs, where did you place? I hope you have designed a different battery carrier?

I look forward to seeing you again in Birkenhead. The team races sound like a brilliant idea. I hope you will bring many Italians with you. You have a few months to recruit.

Hi Gary,

I forgot to mention that my Folgore won all the races :slight_smile:
Based on weather forecast I have designed and built ( one day before the race ) a lighter bulb keel and a larger mainsail to suit very light wind on this small pond

Other competitors were a bit underpowered due to small sail area and heavier displacement ( one of them was a basic kittywake, very weel built but without adjustment for our average weather )

Most probably now they have learned the lesson and next time racing will be much more harder, and funny, due also to the fact that many other “big names” are planning to enter footy class in a very professional and “aggressive” way

Most obviously I am working hard on my computer to evaluate both a refined version of my Folgore, as well investigating something absolutely radical and innovative never seen before… ( ? )

Meantime I am also looking to find aggressive names to fight “cobras” “moongooses” “panteras” and so on … :wink:

I hope my recruitring effort will be succesful enough to have at least two italian footys at birkenhead ( otherwise I will use my 4 channels transmitter to steer two model at same time … )

have a nice day !


ps : a mediterranean rig folgore and unbelivable rc controlled rescue boat and buoys launcher

I’m just back from southern climes Flavio so please accept my rather late congratulations. Small or not the first ‘official’ race is always a great event because now you have slipped the quay and are underway… one foot at a time :slight_smile:

Also I’m pleased to see a Kittiwake K2 there of course, when Simon bought the kit he sent me a beautiful photo of his local mountain backed lake of which I am very envious. Maybe one day I’ll get to sail in such a beautiful location too… or maybe Birkenhead :rolleyes:

I wish you and the Italian footys well Flavio… you have made a great effort to get this started.


Flavio, the casual comment you made about modifying your keel bulb for light wind conditions was great. For new guys like me who do not have other Footys around … YET … it really helps us learn.

Thanks and MUCH success!

I’m Luca Masali, from Italy (Como Lake). I’m a designer, builder and pilot of RC model airplane, expecially seaplanes. But I love boats too. And tonight, walking on the lake shore during sunset, I realized I need a small sailboat… well, a VERY small one: I want to build a footy class! :smiley:

…So, dear Flavio, as you can understand I’m very happy to know that in our country there are a few modellers involved in the game :zbeer:

Of course I’ll need a while to build, test and finish my footie, but I’m sure you will need to generate a new ITA sail number soon… :lol:


(a proposito, esiste solo questo forum in Inglese? Non è che per caso frequentate altri forum, chessò, il baronerosso o qualcosa del genere?)

Hi Flavio

I am jealous. you get a young lady that wants to join after your first race. We have been trying to get some females to join us and we had 11 boats racing last Monday.

We now have 16 skippers w/boats with 3 having 2 each and this has all happened in 4 1/2 months.

Some reasons for good growth:

Community of 1200 homes

A TW designed boat w/fixtures & templates for quick assembly

We will build a boat if they want it ready to sail.

Handicapped sailing with up to 1 minute advantage for new skippers

A great website:

This is lovely ~ I am so pleased that you have other skippers taking part.
Wonderful news

Hi Graham,

… yes , you are right, simon lives in a wonderful place and he showed to me too wonderful pictures of nice models sailing on mountain lakes under a wonderful blue sky.

( I will ask him to post here those pictures )

simon is a skilled skipper, and without doubt he will be able to modify your kitty to take advantage of our very light winds

all the best to you !


Uh, sorry, I’m definitevely NOT a pretty girl, I’m an ugly old man:rolleyes:
The avatar is just the cover of a book of mine, I used it for this forum just because the novel is focused on the place in which I sail with both fullscale and RC boats, and because the main character is an old craftsman :lol:

Well, I hope someone will stay in this thread after my outing… in any cases, my footie is (slowly) taking shape…

just a few shots.

ooops, missing shots!

I need to learn to use this forum!


Good to hear from you again, and even better that the march of the Footys has started in Italy.
If every person going on holiday to Italy carried just one Footy - there could be some great fleet sailing.

How is Presto coming along? Perhaps since you won each race there is no need for a boat beter than Folgore?

Luca (or wolf) I like your boat - it looks great. I have very good memories of Como - we often used to camp there on the way to and back from Venice for holidays.


hi Andrew,

many thanks for kindly words about our italian footy activity…

unfortunately presto building is a bit slower than planned, but is still on my “todo” list

One very skilled professional modelmaker is also currently building one of them.
Most probably I will also design a new enlarged sail plan to suit our mediterranean light wind

( by the way a sistership of folgore - named “fulgur” is currently being build as first romanian footy in transilvania )

meantime I am currently thinking “outside the box” to show something very radical this summer at birkenhead ( ??? )

If this secret project will be a failure, I will build a folgore MKII

Lupo di lago ( lake wolf ) is a quite famous writer of fiction novels about the golden age of aviation, one of them is based on red italian seaplanes for the scheneider cup.

Unfortunately for you , luca ( lupo ) didn’t post here his seacret weapon : an hinged trailing edge rudder on the fin keel ( a trim tab )

On an italian forum this detail has been already shown, generating a lot of discussions ( we are awaiting for sea trials soon )

stay tuned…


Well, I’ll be glad to share my experience with everybody … If I could get any experience!:zbeer:

It will take me a while before I can maiden my footie, I’m quite busy in these days… a book to edit before publication, some daytime job to carry out, and a 18 month old daughter, she takes a lot of my wake time… and a lot of sleeping time too:D

But hopefully I could try in water my little footie, named Fata Morgana, in a couple of weeks; Morgana is my baby, and “fata” just means “Fairy”:party:

I am happy to report that two days ago ( sunday 6th june 2010 ) here in Italy we have enjoyed a nice footy event on a wonderful small lake at more than 2000 mt above sea level .

Sunny weather, fair breeze, wine, beer, barbecue, smart organization by MCP model club, friendly and happy competitors : a perfect day.

For the very first time, we have been able to see seven italian footies on the starting line ( one girl among the skippers too :slight_smile: ).

Several Papayas, a group of one-off project as well an unbelivable chinese “ready to float” boat and my own “presto” have been sailing around buoys during 11 heats.

One of the races has been stopped because the downwind buoy, believe it or not, has been stolen by a huge ( about 10 kg ) fish.

My refurbished wooden cutter has been the “first to finish” eight times out of ten, winning the day.
Many bottles of good wine have been given to first, secon and third placed skippers, and a box of sardines to the last skipper ( Monica ).

Due to the fact that Monica was also the first woman in her female ranking list, the commitee has been kindly enough to add a bottle of red wine to her sardines…

Next race, the third one of the “Italian Footy Cup” will be held on 18th July.

Stay in touch


Flavio (and Roberto for photos ???)

Well done and thank you for sharing the event with the rest of us around the world. It looks like a beautiful place to sail.

Was there “fish” on barbeque menu? :stuck_out_tongue:

Regards to all, Dick


I can reassure you that footy skippers and race officers behaviour has been extremely enviromental friendly.

A joint effort has been carried out to save the life of this sturgeon, removing the downwind mooring line form its fins.

The rescue effort has been succesful, and the big fish has been “relaunched”.

The fish has been polite enough to cross the starting line to express its gratitude to our little fleet

Mario, the skipper of ITA 15, who was leading the fleet before the unexpected buoy sinking expressed his doubts about the possibility that other competitors have been smart enough to train the beast to damage his performances.


We will investigate if a 2035 m ( 6670 ft ) of altitude above sea level can be considered as a world record for a footy regatta

Have a fair wind