Perfect day on Chichester Harbour
All week the forecast was swinging between a very sailable 15 knots, to a full family frightener of 25-30 knots. On the day the gods gave us a beautiful spring race day with bright sunshine and scudding white clouds throwing down a shifty south-southwesterly breeze of 15-20 knots.
Race Officer Greg Wells and his team did a great job as always, setting a spectators' course for the 140 entries, with the first mark just off the HISC clubhouse. Rounding Sandy to port saw the fleet blast away on a starboard reach down to Runway then harden up for a debatable three sail reach to East Head, somewhat less debatable for the boats with only one sail. Greg is famous for setting legs that challenge the crossover point, whether to hoist and hang-on or stay safe and work it. The shifting direction and pressure certainly gave the teams plenty to think about. The march back upwind from Astra to Dunes was also a split call during the flooding tide, with some teams opting to stay low across Stocker Bank or tack up under a gusty East Head and pop out to attack the Winner Bank. As always the Bank had the odd tidal induced standing waves that slapped a few hiking crews round the face and resulted in some great shots from the camera boat! Thanks to James Boyd from The Daily Sail www.thedailysail.com and Ingrid Abery www.ingridabery.com for covering the event.
The worthy winners, James Peters and Dicken Maclean of HISC attributed their win to choosing the right boat - they had intended to sail a 49er, but seeing the conditions made for a last minute swap to a 29er. This is Dicken MacLean’s second win (he was helming the winning RS 200 in 2008). He plans to come back next year and defend his winning run. The date will be early May 2010 and as always we hope you will come and enjoy a great day of fun sailing, in memory of Glyn Charles, and to raise money for the John Merricks Sailing Trust. www.jmst.org.uk This year the event raised over £1,300.
As always the event was supported by many sponsors supplying some great prizes. Our sincere thanks go to Tacktick, Neilson Holidays, Fat Face, Scott USA, The Daily Sail.Com, Ingrid Abery, Rick Tomlinson, Dee Caffari Racing, Volvo Ocean Race, Gill, Yachts & Yachting, Yachting World, Seahorse International and Winning Tides.
Highlights from the 140 entries:
- First Moth: Martin Harrison in 6th (which was a non foiling Moth).
- First National 12, Jo Richards and Sophie Macley in 10th.
- First Flying 15, Barry and Sue Parkin in 14th
- Top B14, that of Dave Dobrijevic and Phil Eltingham at 17th.
- First Finn, Neil Robertson in 21st place
- First RS200, Chris Allen and Fiona Pyke in 24th.
See part one of our photo gallery here
See the full results here