Harken Derm

Carnage at Chester Race Week

Published on August 14th, 2014

Chester, NS (August 14, 2014) – It was a good day to be in the sail and rigging repair business. Extra strong winds on day two of Chester Race Week 2014 proved challenging even for more experienced sailors. Classics, Bluenose and International 14 Fleet races were canceled, while those who competed found conditions challenging and rough, but exhilarating.

“The IODs perform well in heavy air, but we all came back wet for sure,” said Fleet Captain Chester IOD Fleet, Rick Thompson.

Race Week came to an abrupt end for skipper Terry Schnare and the crew of Head Games (Chester Yacht Club) when the boat’s mast broke early in the race. Ray Kennedy’s Just a Dream, Bedford Basin Yacht Club, ran aground on the shore of the Chester Golf Club, while another boat collided with a race committee boat, damaging the motor. There were no injuries.

Chester Race Week 2014 Principal Race Officer Liz Shaw said that while conditions were challenging, and the incidents heartbreaking to watch, the high winds made for some exciting racing.

“On heavy air days like today, the adrenaline is a little higher. It’s not about who has the fastest, lightest boat, it’s about who is mentally and physically prepared to sail in tougher conditions. Sailors are pushed to their limits and you can really see their tactical brains at work. It’s pure excitement.”

Shaw said she is also pleased with yachtscoring.com’s performance, particularly on a challenging day like today.

“Yachtscoring has been amazing. We were able to use the system this morning to send notes specifically to Charlie course skippers to let them know the Bluenose fleet races were canceled due to wind. And, thanks to Telus we have connectivity out on the water, so we’re able to post race results in real time. It’s great to see skippers cross the line, put their spinnaker down and pull their smartphone out to see results.”

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