My name is Glenn Shephard. The boat is called Parsifal III. She’s a sailing yacht (54 meters) and I’m the captain on board.
Which Tiwal model do you have?
We have two of the regular Tiwal 2 sailing dinghies and one Tiwal 2 with reefable sail.
We’ve had it since the beginning of august (5 months).
Why did you choose Tiwal?
We have had Lasers and Open Bics on board, but because those are rigid hulls, they’re quite a bit of trouble: you smash them around the boat every time you move them, they’re quite heavy… So we decided to get Tiwals because they’re inflatable, they’re soft, they’re light and they’re more forgiving… So we thought that we would try those.
And I’ve seen the Tiwal 3 at boat shows and thought it’s very interesting. But what really caught my eye was, in the Tiwal 2, how the hull is just inflatable and no metal sticking out. That’s a big plus for super yachts, and anyone in general, because once the boat’s in the water, you don’t have to keep it away from the hull, where if you keep it behind that’s not so bad but… Sometimes, if the wind goes very light, it can get underneath the hull, and cause problems. So for me personally, for this boat -on Parsifal- or on my boat – I’ve got a 42 Jeanneau – I think that, for how we use it, it’s perfect.
Where do you sail?
We go to the french riviera quite a bit, Corsica of course, and a lot of Sardinia which is very popular.
The Mediterranean is our main home base, but during the winter, we like to go to the Caribbean also. The Caribbean is especially nice because you have the trade winds, and you always have wind for things like sailing the dinghies. It’s almost every day you can take advantage of sailing on small boats like that, and big boats of course.
How is it going so far?
Very good, we really enjoyed them this summer. This was the first summer that we had them. We had an eight-week charter and we use them a few times on charter to introduce guests to sailing on dinghies, small boat sailing.
Which characteristics did surprise you?
I was surprised that they sail really well. I think they’re really the only inflatable sailing boat, sailing dinghy, that really does its job correctly. So yeah, I was very impressed with the sailing characteristics. I personally like the Tiwal 2 because when you’re in the water between people using them, you don’t have to worry about any hard edges. Because we have delicate paint work, … It’s just an inflatable hull, so it’s perfect for us.
Did you personally try Tiwal?
I did! I think I was one of the first people, because the guests that we had at the time didn’t have a lot of sailing experience and I found that also very good. I’m not so big : I’m like 170 height (5’ 7“), 70 kilos (154 lb), and we had a female guest a little smaller and we went together on it.
We were able to sail. It’s a bit tight, but we were able to go out, 2 people, and keep swapping positions, so I could control everything at first, and then I could let her take the tiller and I do the sheet ; or vice versa and then finally she could take the sheet and the tiller and I just tried to stay low and out of the way so she can sail.
I want to use it more now that we have 3 Tiwals on board, we can try to get a little regatta going, I think it’ll be really good.