This video of a crew halyard swinging aboard a First 40 went viral on our Facebook page. Here's the story on how they did it...

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How to swing aboard the First 40 Sailplane – the video that went viral on Yachting World’s Facebook page. We spoke to Joe Bottomley, the boat’s self-appointed ‘chief of halyard swinging’ to find out how they did it:

‘Attach a fender to the end of two spinnaker halyards or a pole topping lift and jib halyard. Adjust so the fender is as high as possible, one person per fender. Motor as fast as possible in a straight line.

‘Once up to speed, put the helm down hard to starboard. The stern will take a couple of seconds to kick and you will feel it when the rudder catches and suddenly the stern will swing right out. This is when they should jump.

‘At this point you want to knock the throttle into neutral as this will put the forward energy into sideways energy once the jumpers start to fly out to the side.

‘Now here’s the most important part, and where it begins to become dangerous. Jump too early and you narrowly avoid the stern of the boat if it kicks in early, and too late you will end up hitting the bow.

‘If you want to go for the record, you need somebody really mad to get round the front of the forestay. This happened during our video – the other three fell off, which catapulted our record jumper round the bow.’

For other stunts whilst sailing, head over to our Video page, where we have a collection of the craziest stunts on sailing boats.

Things to double check for:

  • Sharp clips on shackles when connecting the fenders to the halyard
  • Boats close by
  • Swimming abilities
  • Making sure your jumpers aren’t scared- it gets pretty high
  • Securing everything down below
  • Get plenty of action shots!