Wind dies down for Chichester’s Snowflake fleet

The Mirror of Grace Yeoman and Izzy Barker in the Snowflake fleet
The Mirror of Grace Yeoman and Izzy Barker in the Snowflake fleet

With westerly gales sweeping most of UK at the weekend, the prospect of racing in the second Snowflake race at Chichester YC must have been in doubt for most of the crews.

However, a reduction in wind speed meant a 15-knot breeze greeted the 55 competitors.

A well-prepared race officer, Derek Jackman, laid a course to give competitors the best use of the water and a good first beat, with a committee boat start line north of the Chichester lake area.

First away was the fast fleet and the Merlin Rocket of Martin Jones won on corrected time, with the Scorpion of Steve and Sarah Cockerill (Hill Head SC) second, followed by the Merlin Rocket of David and Fiona Sayce from Hayling Island SC.

In the medium fleet, Martin Orton and Rick Page from CYC in the Laser 2000 made a first appearance in the winter series. They finished third on correct time.

However, it was the two National 12s of William Warren and Sophie Mackley that revelled in the conditions with their Shoreham club colleagues of Alex Jackson and Sarah Bines never far away.

Warren and Mackley finished first on corrected time, just over 30 seconds ahead of Jackson after an hour’s racing.

In the slow fleet another good turnout of 24 eager youngsters, in mainly Oppies, Toppers, Fevas and Mirrors made a great spectacle against the backdrop of the Chichester skyline.

After a 40-minute race, the Mirror of Adrian and Harriet Fish from Itchenor Sailing Club won, with Charlie South of Chichester YC, the first Optimist, second, and a very close third - only five seconds behind on corrected time - was Hamish Rosewarne from Pagham YC, the first Topper.

The next Snowflake event, races three and four is scheduled for February 12, first start 1.30pm.