Updated: 20 hours ago
Chichester Harbour has everything for everyone.
There is nothing better than fast moving water, narrow shallow channels, huge tides and the open sea. Itchenor Keelboat Week provided all this and more. This year it was a low key event, no trophies but 19 boats went racing and it was nothing like low key!
Huge competition at the front of the fleet with the rest of us vying for the next position down the rank.
Tuesday was a difficult race in very little wind, it was sheer luck where you ended up, but was it? All the top of the fleet made it to the front places so they must be doing something different. I'd love to know what makes a boat go in no wind with the tide against them. Even kedging didn't help the boys on Astralita X91, who ended up retiring. Winners: 1st Catherine X26, 2nd Felix X192, 3rd Lass X80, 4th Madeleine X58.
Wednesday, on the other hand was a brilliant top of the tide race down to Beach, Calvert and Treloar. It was all about the start and which side you chose to go down harbour. A terrific race and the competition is really high but that's what drives us on to do better. A good deal of swapping places but the end results were almost the same apart from Astralita determined to get back in the race coming 4th.
Thursday was cancelled so all to play for on Friday.
So the last two fabulous races, organised by "the Team" in superb conditions at the top of the tide. 10 - 15 knots throughout with boats changing position constantly. Only Lass ran aground with John jumping out in the first race. There were 2 recalls for the 2nd race with the black flag after the first recall. Two boats on the 'board of shame' had to leave the race and that really concentrated the mind on that start line. The race was close with the top 6 boats creating several battles to the marks. Some finishes were so close but the final results for the week were:
4th Alastair Shaw, Beverly Coghlan & Jonathan Clark in Phoenix X186, 3rd, Peter Baines and Crew in Felix X192, 2nd Penny Fulford and Nigel Buckley in Madeleine X58 1st place. Colin McKinnon, Neil & Ros Hart in Catherine X26. A well deserved win.
A brilliant thank you to the racing team who organised the superb week with an enormous thanks to Roger Wickens who has run IKW for the past 16 years and is hanging his hat up. No pressure then David McGregor, who is taking over from him.