The BYC Solent Rally at Cowes was well attended with 5 yachts. The Commodore chartered a skippered First 40.7, Guy Adams brought his S&S 34, Richard and Judy Southwell brought Aluna, John Oates his Parker 28, and Robin Powell the classic Crystal.
The Willet Cup race was run on Saturday in superb conditions, 20-22 knots SW and bright sunshine over a square course set by the Commodore in concert with David Hunt and others. The start was The Squadron line, the first mark Trinity House to port, then north across and east rounding two racing marks to starboard, back south across the Solent rounding Peel Bank to starboard and finishing with Royal London due north. It was, as usual, a handicap race but with a staggered start to bring the yachts over the finish line together. Crystal was first off with others following at 15-minute intervals and the Commodore’s First 40.7, Fandango, the last to start. Most yachts had a reef in the main and the lee rail in the water all the way around. As the fleet sailed the third leg two Very Large Container Vessels crossed the deep water channel necessitating avoiding action by Crystal. By the last leg Crystal was still ahead but both Idiah and Fandango were closing quickly. All three yachts approached the finish line together but neither Crystal nor Fandango could point quite high enough and had to tack giving Idiah line honours followed by Fandango and Crystal. It was club racing at its best.
The final result on corrected time was;
1. Crystal II – Robin Powell (86 mins)
2. Idiah – Guy Adams (86.3).
3. Fandango – Alex Charlton (86.4)
4. Aluna – Richard Southwell (97.9)
5. Good News – John Oates (110)
Everyone then attended a splendid dinner at the Red Duster in Cowes at which the toasts to the Club, The Commodore, and the competitors were eloquent and heartfelt. On Sunday all bar Idiah sailed to Priory Bay for a picnic lunch in the sunshine. It was the perfect end to a perfect rally.