The blustery wind strengths and sea state caused by wind over tide that greeted sailors as they made their way to their boats for the fourth day of racing at the 10th Charles Stanley Direct Cowes Classics Week, reluctantly have forced the race committee to cancel racing for today.
PRO Gill Smith made the announcement, saying “The decision to cancel all racing today was taken after extensive consideration of all information available and in the light of wind strength forecasts for the afternoon. Having consulted a range of forecasts, all indications are for a minimum wind strength of some 20 knots with gusts well above that. In addition, professional forecasts are showing a building situation through the afternoon, including potential gusts in excess of 40 knots .
Three race committees had to put to sea and monitored conditions for a period of well over one hour; they reported unacceptable and unsafe sea conditions which were considered unlikely to abate until well into the afternoon, even with the turn of the tide.
As a result it was decided that there was no alternative than to cancel the racing for the day.“
Today's racing was sponsored by Harken who have kindly agreed to make a donation to the Charles Stanley Direct Cowes Classics Week official charity the Cowes Sea Cadets.
Chairman of the event Sir Richard Ottaway comments “A further and final day of racing is planned for tomorrow (Friday) if conditions permit. We look forward to welcoming all classes back on the water.”
Mistral is a Hereshoff designed 82 ft schooner, built in 1938, which is taking part in Charles Stanley Direct Cowes Classics Week. She has been owned by Christoph Schlotjunker since 1996 who has put her through two major restorations, and she is now looking immaculate. The yacht was a navy vessel and during the Second World War patrolled the coast of the USA in search of U-Boats. Later she was the first training ship of the US Navy to sail across the Atlantic under the command of a female captain to participate in the coronation ceremony of Queen Elizabeth II. A wonderful sight at the Charles Stanley Direct Cowes Classics Week, Mistral carries an array of sails including the gollywobbler. With her current owner she has crossed the Atlantlic a number of times to race with schooners in Nova Scotia and according to her crew she can withstand most conditions. Today's high winds would have been no problem for her but sadly racing has been cancelled.
Charles Stanley Direct Cowes Classics Week is grateful to supporting sponsors Haines Boatyard, Winkworth, Harken, Red Funnel, Cowes Harbour Commission, Kendalls Fine Art and Classic Boat magazine, and for the first time Henri Lloyd.
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Photo credits; Rick Tomlinson.
Media enquiries and image requests:
Charles Stanley Direct Cowes Classics Week Press Officer
Clearline Communications Ltd
Telephone: 07774 623 539