Please select your home edition
Sailingfast 2018 2 728x90
Product Feature
Sea Sure Infinity Furler
Sea Sure Infinity Furler

Chichester Harbour Race Week 2017 - Day 5

by Robert Macdonald 27 Aug 2017 15:39 BST 21-25 August 2017

Friday's forecast throughout the week had predicted light winds for the last day of the regatta suggesting that racing was unlikely to take place and Thursday's results would have to be the finale. However the sunshine broke through early giving both hope and opportunity that the light north-easterly would be pulled to the south as the land heated up and a sea breeze was pulled in.

By midday the wind had gone round to 180 degrees and flicked to 190 degrees, and then it was purely a matter of time as to whether it would settle and be strong enough for the 330 competing boats to battle around the course. All classes were held ashore initially but released as the wind oscillated between 180 degrees and 230 degrees, strengthening to a steady 7 knots.

On Series A the first starts were away after a 40 minute postponement with the beat against the tide up to the harbour entrance on a bearing of 220 degrees. Disappointingly 10 minutes in to the start sequence the wind backed to 190 degrees, allowing most classes to almost fetch to the windward mark. In the Fast Asymmetrics the 49er of Johnny C and James Yearsley led the fleet but it was dubious as to whether they would be able put enough distance between them and the Musto Skiff of Andrew Gould, who successfully completed the course with a third win on corrected time. In the Medium handicap Douglas and Hilary Baker's 2nd win of the week was enough to put them on equal points with 29er 1112 sailed by Henry Salmon and David Brand, and win the week. The 400s Michael Thompson and Toby Price from Emsworth Slipper 2nd place ahead of rivals Mike Partridge and Clare Davis in third place was enough to win the week and win the Chablis Bowl. Simon and Jackie Lytton in their Merlin Rocket (HISC) 3rd place was not needed to leave them winners overall for the Geoffrey Lowles Salver, ahead of Hamish and Andrew Streeter in their Flying Fifteen, while veterans Roger and Barbara Palmer secured the Gerald King Cornflake Trophy as the first Fifteen to cross the finish line.

In the Finns, where only 1 point separated the first three, Matthew Walker had to sail his way through the fleet to retain his overall lead and take both the Mickey Finn Cup and Itchenor Plate. In the RS200s, the largest entry of the week, Tom and Emma Morris' 3rd bullet ahead of Tom and Lucy Hewitson's 2nd place, proved to be the final placings overall, giving them the Freddie West Trophy.

The very discouraging forecast led many to believe on Series B there would be no need to rig on the last day of Race Week and an hour and a half before the scheduled start that view seemed valid. However the faint north easterly swung to the south and started to build as the land heated up, racing got underway only half an hour later than advertised. Unfortunately, as the start sequence was nearing the end, the wind swung left leaving the beat virtually a one tack exercise. Although it came back later in the race, the die had been cast for many. The wind also started to fade towards the end making the last leg a very long one for the tail enders.

The Laser results ran true to form with William Burchall (Parkstone SC) taking another bullet. Simon Radford (Bosham SC) sailed a discarded 5th to retain his second place overall from Charles Parker (Chichester YC). The overall winner of the Medium Handicap (2 man), the Laser Stratos of Martin Brooks and Neil Wilson (Thorney Island) chose not to participate leaving the field clear for the RS Vision of Lizzie and David Fewings (Bowmoor SC) to take first place and consolidate their second position overall. The singlehanded handicap saw some new faces at the front with the Supernova of James Gerwat (Felpham SC) wining from the RS Aero of Richard Bentley (Felpham SC). Overall winner was Sammy Isaacs-John son (Maidenhead SC. The Laser Radial overall winner, Martyn Jones from Dell Quay SC, also stayed ashore, the race being won by second overall Melissa Meredith from Papercourt. Katie Fiddaman (HISC) won the Laser 4.7s from overall winner Georgia Robertson (Mengeham Rythe SC). The tight competition at the front of the Solo fleet was resolved in favour of Nick Bonner (HISC) from Guy Mayger (Felpham SC) and Richard Catchpole (Leigh and Lowton), but on the day the race was run by up and coming youngster Alex Butler (HISC). The Fevas had to persevere through the fading breeze at the end of the race, but Phoebe Peters and Freddy Woods overall win was never in doubt, and enabled them to stay ashore.

On Series C, where the course is less prone to major wind oscillations, the same 25 degrees wind shift to the south took effect on the first round of the first race but the competitors didn't complain, and the course reset for the final race. In the Teras the leaders stayed ashore but retained their first and second places overall – Olly Peters followed by Jakey Wood, but Madeleine Bilbrough secured 3rd place after a good win in the first race and Libby Thompson gained a 1st in the second. The Optimists closely fought todays races with Rosie Thompson just missing out on a clean sweep of 1st places having been a little early for the start in Race 9 and so finishing 3rd behind Oscar Pitman and Oscar Hoult.

At prize-giving the Youth Team Trophy was collected by Hayling Island Sailing Club, and after a sudden hush as HISC collected their runners-up plate for second place in the Team Event, Emsworth Slipper were announced as overall Team winners. Appreciation was recorded to the Event Sponsor Freedom Sat Tooway, and supporting sponsors Raymarine, Marine Superstore, and Musto. Race Week next year will be Monday 13th to Friday 17th August 2018.

Results and more information at

Related Articles

Chichester Harbour Race Week preview
Last year saw 383 boats crewed by almost 600 sailors from 65 clubs The UK's pre-eminent sailing harbour will again be the setting for the country's most well-attended open regatta when Chichester Harbour Race Week takes to the water this August. Posted on 28 Jun 2022
Chichester Harbour Race Week 2021 preview
A bumper turnout of over 400 boats expected After a year off due to COVID, Chichester Harbour race week is back on for August 2021. The regatta is one of the largest sailing dinghy regattas in the country and it is expected to produce a bumper turnout of over 400 boats. Posted on 22 Apr 2021
Chichester Harbour Race Week regrettably cancelled
The committee decide it is unable to run the event safely Following a meeting of the CHRW Regatta Committee it has regrettably been decided to cancel CHRW 2020 due to the restrictions imposed upon us all in managing the Covid-19 virus. Posted on 22 Jun 2020
Chichester Harbour Race Week preview
Here's why it should be on your bucket list... Have you ever done CHRW (a.k.a. Fed Week) before? If the answer is "yes" then then it is most likely you have done it several times because just about anyone who has done "Fed Week" comes back again and again. Posted on 13 Jun 2019
Chichester Harbour Race Week overall
Ending on a high note! After four days of glorious sailing on Chichester Harbour, one brand-new competitor summed up his feelings to the organisers... Posted on 29 Aug 2017
Chichester Harbour Race Week day 4
Wind arrives early and settles in The sunshine and breeze played their part today. The wind arrived early and settled in at around 245-260 and 10-12 knots. Posted on 24 Aug 2017
Chichester Harbour Race Week day 3
A classic day's racing for all classes Series A had a classic day's racing today with two races held for all classes. The wind remained steady between 250-270 at around 12-15knts which made for some great racing. Posted on 23 Aug 2017
Chichester Harbour Race Week day 2
Wind fills in to give the fleet some racing A light easterly breeze greeted competitors launching for Tuesday's race. However, as the fleets gathered in the starting area the breeze faded forcing a postponement and fears that Monday's long wait for a final abandonment would be repeated. Posted on 22 Aug 2017
Chichester Harbour Race Week day 1
A frustrating start due to lack of wind A frustrating start to the week for the 450 competitors who have entered Race Week, as a lack of wind prevented any racing being started. Posted on 21 Aug 2017
Southern England's biggest dinghy regatta
Countdown to Chichester Harbour Race Week 2017 In a little over a week's time southern England's biggest dinghy regatta, Chichester Harbour Race Week, will be under way. Traditionally, at least half of the entrants sign up at host club Hayling Island SC on the eve of the event. Posted on 12 Aug 2017