The Three Peaks Yacht Race

  • UK (GBR)
  • Off-Road Running
  • Off-Road Cycling

Vlad Impaled

Rob Howard / 20.06.2005See All Event Posts Follow Event
The first 3 yachts arrived in Whitehaven together on Monday morning shortly before 8am, coming through the tidal lock gate together and setting their runners off on the cycle ride and run to Scafell Pike and back.

Vlad the Impaler had arrived at Whitehaven first and tried to get into the lock, but ran aground and had to wait for the tide to float off, by which time Sanderling and Abbeydale Moonshine had caught them up. Sanderling reached the jetty first to win the second sailing stage.

“We knew it was touch and go if we had clearance to get in,� said Ian Winterburn, “but had to try as we’d have the race as good as won if we made it. …. But we didn’t. We ran aground and couldn’t kedge off, then the others came into sight. At least we lost nothing by trying.�

“We had a nervous time in the Swellies, going through with the spinnaker up, but when the wind dropped we went backwards and were so close to some big rocks. Speedboats were coming past within feet of us, it was madness. But we got through and had a lovely sail up, with a 3 to 4 southerly, making 7 to 8 knots. It was great, then we hit a huge hole – the wind dropped and we saw a spinnaker in the distance getting nearer and nearer and nearer.�

“We thought it was Moonshine, but it was Sanderling, which is going really well. It’s his own boat and he’s sailing it to its maximum speed, while Abbeydale is a charter and it’s hard for them to know how to get the best from it. Then we rowed to the next wind band, picked up again and made it to Whitehaven, but just too late to catch the tide to get into the lock!�

“At least the runners, Rob and Keith, had a good rest. The 3 crew rowed to let them sleep, but now we don’t think they can make it up the mountain and back in time to catch the tide out. So they won’t push it and will just stay with the other teams.�

The latest news of the chasing fleet is that Flapjack, Mew Gull, Galahad and Hummingbird are expecting to arrive in Whitehaven around midday, and are presently sailing close together, making 5.5 knots. Annie Gunn has retired after getting into difficulties and having to use the engine in the Swellies (they are motoring up to Fort William). They had passed Wise Guys, who also missed the tide in the Menai Strait and were anchored, so they will be well many hours behind the rest of the fleet.

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