The fleet make Weymouth
50° 36.43 002° 27.14 Custom House Quay, Weymouth
Sunday 13th August
It was grey and overcast start to the day at Mercury Marina, with the sun occasionally glinting out from behind the clouds. At 0730 hrs the MBM control RIB Time Flies slipped its lines and headed out of the Hamble. Aboard was Guernsey-man Richard Poat and MBM’s Claire Frew, their mission was to assess the conditions at the Needles and beyond for the fleet. The plan was to get everyone to the needles by slack water. By 0900 Time Flies had reported in that conditions were acceptable and back at Mercury the fleet were called off one-by-one, with Time Flies continuing slowly on towards Weymouth. As the boats departed the River Hamble a haze came down and the heavens opened but it was fairly short-lived.
Once the fleet had cleared the Needles the sun finally broke through the clouds. A stiff south-westerly breeze made for very wet passage with sea spray soaking the occupants on their flybridges. Un be-known to them, Djinskia lost their dinghy on passage. Despite a strong east going tide, a passing motorboat found the tender a drift and reported it to Portland Coastguard, who then contacted the MBM fleet. The dinghy is now in Poole.
Time Flies entered the harbour at around midday with the first boat, AquaVit arriving half an hour later. Rafting and refuelled the fleet in such a small area was a bit chaotic but peace soon descended on Weymouth Harbour once everyone was all in position. It was lovely sunny afternoon; everyone went off to explore the town or basked in the sunshine.
Claire and Richard aboard Time Flies, departing Mercury Yacht Harbour, Hamble
Bénéteau Antares 9.80 Amilie of London at the Needles
Azimut 42 Dream Catcher on-route
*photos by Michelle Grant