HRH, The Duke of Edinburgh attends second day of Cowes Week

After yesterday’s persistent rain for the opening day of Cowes Week, thankfully the sun broke through the clouds this morning leaving a sparkling, classic day for the 891 entries racing on the Solent. Like yesterday however, the wind generally from a west-south-westerly direction, gusted up in the afternoon making for some exciting, tactical racing.

HRH, The Duke of Edinburgh was in Cowes today to watch the racing and pay a visit to the race platform at the Royal Yacht Squadron during the starting sequences, before making his way along the high street to Regatta House – the Regatta Centre – on the Parade.

Racing got underway at 1005 this morning with IRC Class 1 sent on another interesting, zig-zag course mainly out in the western Solent out as far as Lymington Bank.Rio, Charles Dunstone’s Judel Vrolijk-designed TP52, which clinched an overall win of the Queen’s Cup yesterday covered herself in glory once again today, this time with Dunstone on the helm. The team notched up another win which now firmly places them in a strong overall position. Mark Chisnell, navigator, chatting after the race said the course was more straightforward than yesterday. “We headed straight off to the other end of the Solent, did a windward/leeward tucked up beyond Lymington and then had a good race back with the chute up in 15-20kts.”

The worst thing to happen to Chisnell today however, was his computer breaking, leaving him in the unenviable position of having to go ‘back to basics’. “I couldn’t believe it,” added Chisnell, “we did the whole race with a check chart and a hand bearer which I suppose proves it can be done old style in an crisis.”

The second day of racing for the Extreme 40 iShares Cup series continued apace today from Egypt Point with Pete Cumming and the crew on Oman Sail Masirah leading Oman Sail Renaissance overall on the leaderboard.

Shirley Robertson and team (including Dee Caffari) who, after yesterday’s racing, was lying second overall, was involved in a collision with a spectator rib today. An official statement was issued from OC Events late this afternoon: “The Race Direction Team of OC Events, organisers of the iShares Cup, can advise that following a collision between an Extreme 40 and a spectator RIB [rigid inflatable boat] on the water, resulting in one of the passengers on the RIB requiring medical treatment. The passenger Mrs Dorothy Haslam received immediate, preliminary First Aid assistance on the water before being transferred to shore and admitted to Newport Hospital. This incident happened in the first race at 1433 BST on Sunday, 2nd August on the Solent, Cowes.

“OC Events are awaiting further confirmation on the condition of Mrs Haslam but can confirm it is non-critical. The Race Direction Team are currently undertaking a full assessment of how the incident occurred, however, on the water rules are clear that vessels under motorized power must keep clear of boats under sail. The spectator RIB was a private vessel and not part of the official organisation.”