The Three Peaks Yacht Race

  • UK (GBR)

Heavy Weather – Hard Choices

Rob Howard / 19.06.2006See All Event Posts Follow Event
There was a general air of nervousness and uncertainty among competitors around the Whitehaven Marina on Monday evening, with the weather forecast for the next couple of days the main topic of conversation. It’s not good. Not good at all.

Depending on where you look the forecast varies of course, but the Met Office Inshore forecast for the areas the race passes through for the next 24 hours are minor variations on;

Wind: northwest 3 or 4 backing south or southeast 5 or 6 increasing 7 or gale 8 for a time then veering southwest. Sea State: moderate occasionally rough later

... and for the following 24 hours

Wind: southwest becoming cyclonic 5 or 6 becoming northwest 5 to 7 perhaps gale 8 later.
Sea State: moderate or rough, locally very rough later.

The cause of the trouble are two deep areas of low pressure, and several of the boats now in Whitehaven are nervous about going out into such weather. Flapjack have already made the decision to withdraw. This was harsh news for their runners, Andrea Goode and Gwyn Jones who had just returned from Scafell Pike, setting another good time. The crew said they were “beating us with sticks wanting to go on and planning to drive up and run Ben Nevis anyway�.

Other crews making the hard choice on whether to continue are Multinet, Confusion, Amicus and Huckleberry Friend. Confusion, Multinet and Amicus have already decided to stay the night in Whitehaven and review things in the morning. All naturally want to continue but are tempering their decision with safety in mind. Some are also keeping in mind that they can finish up to 6pm Friday – so there is lots of time in hand.

Kithross II definitely do not want to give up! But their runners are in difficulty, and the team are working on plans B & C, or maybe D. After booking into the Wasdale Head Hotel and spending most of the day there Nigel Gould and Colin Ricketts set off up Scafell Pike around 4pm in the afternoon, but turned back before getting to the summit as Gould was unable to go on.

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