The 40th Three Peaks Yacht Race

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Number Crunching and Crystal Gazing

Rob Howard / 21.06.2017See All Event Posts Follow Event
Muir Morton and Tom Bush on Scafell Pike
Muir Morton and Tom Bush on Scafell Pike / © Rob Howard

With all the race boats on the final sail it’s time to look at the state of play in the various competitions in the race after 2 stages, and look forward to what might happen on Ben Nevis and at the finish.

On the second sail from Caernarfon to Whitehaven the quickest (both on actual and corrected handicap time) were the short handed Mammoths team.  They left later than most and had the advantage of sailing straight through the Swellies on the tide, then made good time to finish with a sail time of 1 day 7 hours and 23 minutes.  Moby J’s actual sail time was slower, but their time on handicap is exactly the same as Mammoths!  Looks like it’s a tie on the second sail! (However, the trophy for the second leg includes both sailing and running, and Moby J win this.)

On the Scafell Pike ride/run the quickest were Alex Pilkington and Pavel Paloncy in 6 hours 35 minutes, but sadly their team had to withdraw after they got back from the run, so they can’t defend the King of the Mountains title (the fastest over all 3 peaks).  This leaves Tom Bush and Muir Morton in the lead after two mountains with a combined time of 10 hours 46 minutes, their nearest challengers being Team Chemsol  (Saul Lovatt & Alasdair Cowell) in 12 hours and 1 minute – so the Moby J pair have a big lead going to Ben Nevis.

Moby J is also in the lead on corrected race time after the first two legs, and is 1 hour 38 minutes ahead of White Cloud.  Third overall after 3 legs is Mystery II of Meon.  (The 1936 Bermudian Cutter has a handicap of 0.843.) Hare Hill, who have been consistently at the front on the sailing legs are 9th with their handicap of 1.056 for the much faster boat.

All of which leaves us with the possibility of some very close races on Ben Nevis overnight as the lead boats come into Fort William. (They actually come into Corpach which is just outside Fort William and is the southern end of the Caledonian Canal.)

The three lead boats (currently coming up Loch Linnhe towards the Corran Narrows) are White Cloud, then Hare Hill, then Moby J.  

They will be racing for line honours of course, to be first to finish, but more importantly for the overall race win (which is where the handicaps come into play).  The two likely contenders for this year are White Cloud and Moby J.  Moby J lead after 2 stages and have the faster runners, but White Cloud are currently ahead of them!

A lot may depend on tide times at the Corran Narrows and whether White Cloud gets held up. The runners will also be on Ben Nevis at night, and the weather here is currently overcast with periods of intense rainfall and big thunderstorms.  It’s going to be an interesting finish tonight.

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