Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Sailing Back from Cowes Week

Cowes Week finished on Friday, but the town was still buzzing at the weekend with crews and spectators and of course more than a few boats getting ready for the start of the Fastnet race on Sunday.

One of the things I really like about the Cowes regatta is the small and traditional keel boat classes. Here a couple of Solent Sunbeams heading east with the tide on Sunday morning. My guess is they're heading back to Itchenor in Chichester Harbour.

Designed by Alfred Westmacott as a fast 3 ton, half decked keel boat, with 300 sq ft of sail area. The Itchenor fleet started in 1922 and the Falmouth fleet in 1924, the main difference being that the Solent fleet could fly spinnakers, while the Falmouth boats were restricted to a poled out genoa. Although since 1965 they have all sailed under the amalgamated "Sunbeam Class" and meet together for some very competitive racing.

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