Submitted by chs815

WSC's Al Doughty and Ian Cheke have just completed the exceptionally tough challenge of double-handing the Fastnet Race. Here is Al's account of the race:

Submitted by steve

The Kenion trophy being sailed tomorrow (27 July) has a particular place in my yachting calendar, as it was on ‘White Nothe’, Hugh Kenion’s locally-built Buchanan Seaspray launched in 1962, that I did my first keelboat sailing, along with Keith Sullivan, Keith Bird, Mick Floyd and other early crew members.

Red Team winners

Fantastic conditions for the Rear Admiral's Cup ... the sea breeze had set in by late morning resulting in a veering S-SW F4+ with a flat seas and blue sky.

Submitted by chs815

Two WSC boats took part in the Round the Island Race this year – Arcsine, skippered by Kathy Claydon and Jo90, skippered by Richard Woof. Arcsine was crewed by Charlotte Weaver, Andi Heyting, Nathan Gray and Rocco and Thomas Franco. They had their longest race ever, taking 13 hours. Only 250 out of the 1250 starters finished.

Submitted by steve

Having entered Thierry's Sigma 33 'Oirrior' for this year's Round the Island seemed an increasingly ambitious idea as the week of strong easterlies progressed, and we spent most of Friday debating whether to go or not, but finally decided at 1700, over coffee at the Yacht Club, to leave - even though the forecast still gave E 25 knots for the night to come, though the wind was supposed to ease later - how many times have I heard that one! Outside the breakwater 20 knots and a big sea suggested this was not going to be easy, and the evening merely proved the point as the wind rose to 26 knots and stayed there for most of the crossing.

Submitted by steve

Sailing in company is a good way of taking the stress out of a Channel crossing, especially if you’re doing it for the first time. There is nothing to beat the feeling of the open sea as you get clear of the land, except perhaps the sense of achievement of having made a good landfall with the tide in your favour, as you drift up the coast in the sunshine towards your destination.

If you’re thinking of joining the Solstice rally this year, I’d be grateful if you could let me know as soon as you can, so that I have an idea of numbers for the winetasting, etc.

Steve Fraser
Aliya

Basse Portsall

On Sunday 9th June, Rima and I enjoyed the company of Cherbourg Yacht Club crews during a delightful BBQ on the terrace organised by Amanda and superbly cooked by our Commodore Steve and his wife Josie.

Submitted by steve

You could tell the weekend was going well from the singing coming from the cockpit of 'Les Rapetous' from Granville; sailing hard seems to come as naturally as partying hard to the French, though WSC was ably represented, in the former if not the latter, by Kathy Claydon and her crew on 'Arcsine'– Mike, Charlotte, Pat, Kirsty and Andy. Well done to them, and to the crew of 'Effusion', who decided not to risk their rig in those conditions, but still got in on Sunday morning after the wind had dropped a bit.

Submitted by chs815

Having decided not to enter this year’s Fastnet race, accomplished WSC skipper Kathy Claydon is concentrating this season on double-handed offshore racing in the JOG and RORC series. Last weekend Kathy and Phil Kirk competed in the JOG race from Cowes to Dielette on the Cherbourg peninsular. The route took them via the Casquets rocks off Alderney.

Submitted by steve

On passageweather.com Thursday looked an ideal day to cross back to France, though the shipping forecast was giving fog patches; I was sailing as soon as I was clear of the Stone Pier, though beyond the Shambles it was obvious there was humidity still being carried up-Channel after Wednesday's rain, and I soon had about 400m visibility, which lasted till after the shipping. AIS should mean there are no surprises, but it was still a shock to see a huge container ship suddenly loom out of the fog to starboard, heading SE to Le Havre.