The weather forecast for Saturday was 19 gusting 40. On arriving at Whale Island
the wind was very strong and flags on HMS Bristol were completely horizontal.
At the race briefing we were told it was doubtful that sailing would take place on
Saturday but the forecast was for lighter winds on Sunday.
So we were to rig our dinghies with furled jibs and mains wrapped around the boom
and everything made secure ready for Sunday sailing. We reconvened and it was confirmed
that no sail would take place on Saturday so off we went to amuse ourselves around
Portsmouth for the rest of the day.
I made my way to my hotel and booked in and went for a windy stroll along the promenade
only to be accosted by Frank Rainsborough and his helm, Jim Lowden. We decided to
take a look at the HMS Victory and other Portsmouth dock history. We wandered around
for about an hour and a half then had tea and Ice cream.
Sunday dawned a lot less windy with the wind strength around 8 gusting to about 12,
sailing was on! The plan for the weekend had been 4 races Saturday and 2 on Sunday.
Now we were hoping to get 4 in on Sunday, all short races back to back for 2 races
then change boats and then another 2 races. The course was a port triangle crossing
through the start on each lap.
We came in after 4 races to be told that we could squeeze in another 2 races!. I
was sailing solo along with another boat, who did get a crew after 1 race. There
were 11 Bosun's in the fleet and the racing was hectic as the course was about 100
metres plus between marks. I had some good racing and tussles amongst the back of
the fleet. Hitting the mark in one race I did my 360 putting me last but still I
managed to catch up to finish 10th.
Frank and Jim fared very well actually winning one race outright with a second and
a couple of thirds putting them on equal points for 3rd position but tie-broken to
4th overall, so not on the podium, but a prize anyway for being the top placed civilian
I managed 2 8's, 3 9's and a 10 to finish 10th overall.
It was a great days sailing with all the dinghies having brand new sails. I will
most certainly be back next year.