There's more wind in prospect than seemed likely earlier in the week for the final laps of Skandia Cowes Week.
There’s more wind in prospect than seemed likely earlier in the week for the final laps of Skandia Cowes Week.
The low, formed out of the remnants of Hurricane Alex, makes its long-heralded final approach today but is due to do so in rather better shape than anticipated. Couple that with the occluded front that liberally washed the late-night revellers off the streets of Cowes last night, and associated troughs today, and you have a good recipe for a decent, if potentially unstable, breeze.
At the moment the wind is predominantly out of the south, but it can be expected to veer to a more westerly direction and increase in strength through the day as the 998mb low, currently lying just to the west of Lands End, moves north-eastwards, fills and joins forces with another low currently lying over the Netherlands. The new Brambles Bank weather station that has proven so useful this week has been offline since 2130 last night, as indeed has its sister station at Southampton Dockhead, but the ybw.com ‘Nowcast’ system, which uses the supercomputing power of the Met Office’s new facilities in Exeter, is predicting wind speeds of 12-16 knots slightly west of south at 1000 with an 82 per cent chance of rain.
Satellite imagery confirms that, although Cowes is currently saying goodbye to the particularly heavy bank of cloud associated with the front, more broken layers of cloud will be following behind as the day progresses.
From here on in it is likely to get just that bit more exciting again as the twinned lows, 1001mb centred over Manchester and 1000mb centred off the Netherlands coast, set up a healthy westerly flow. If that forecast comes to pass Skandia Cowes Week will bow out with some great sailing -sailors may yet have to brush off their slightly more modest suits of sails and/or their reefing skills for tomorrow.