Wet and windy conditions at Clwb Hwylio Pwllheli Sailing Club scuppered the chance of any sailing on day three of the RYA Volvo Youth National Championships 2012 with racing being postponed across the six Youth classes.
After a building breeze and the temperature dropping yesterday (Tuesday 2 April), the day dawned with the anticipated arrival of much worse weather, snow on the hills behind Pwllheli and gusts up to 40 knots out in Cardigan Bay.
Neil Marsden, Event Coach, commented: “We have been monitoring the weather over night watching it travel down from Scotland. I have been observing the synoptic chart and there is compression between a high and a low pressure squeezing the iso-bars, meaning we are in for a stormy 12-13 hour spell which has moved down the Welsh coast line here at Pwllheli, hence gusts of up to 35-40 knots which is most definitely un-sailable for Youth dinghy and windsurf racers.”
“20-25 knots of breeze is the maximum we would send the sailors out in which is what it was reaching towards the end of yesterday, anything more than that and they would be called in for safety reasons, hence why the race committee have cancelled all racing for today.”
“Looking ahead, we should be in for a better day tomorrow with spells of sunshine and a more reasonable 15-20 knots of breeze. We should now end up with two days of perfect sailing conditions to conclude what so far has been an exciting RYA Volvo Youth National Championships in North Wales,” concluded Marsden.
Whilst sitting around playing cards with fellow sailors from the RYA Youth Racing programme, Joe Bennett who is currently level on points with Kieran Martin at the top of the RS:X leader board, commented: “It’s disappointing we can’t go out today as being a windsurfer these are the sort of conditions that we live for – you can race in any kind of wind, especially when its gusting like it is today! However, it is understandable that it could cause some safety issues for the race committee and problems with other classes which I think is why it has been postponed.”
“So today I think we are just going to relax, recover from what was a tough, cold day out on the water yesterday and prepare for some more tight racing tomorrow,” said the 16-year-old from Rotherham.
With only two days left of competition here at Clwb Hwylio Pwllheli Sailing Club, sailors will are all vying for a host of Class Youth World and European Championship places, as well as selections for RYA Volvo Team GBR for the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships which take place in Dublin Bay, Ireland, between the 12th-21st July, and for RYA Team GBR the British team for the Eurosaf Youth Sailing European Championship to be held in Denmark from the 4th-11th of August 2012.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, said: “It’s a shame not to get any racing in today, but I don’t think anyone can question the decision, it was 2 degrees C all morning, the wind chill and flurries of snow alone meant that we had grave reservations about going afloat, couple that with 40 knots and it was obvious that it was not going to happen today. We were in agony just checking the RIB’s and strapping down the branding – you literally could not feel your fingers after a few minutes and were in great pain as they were warming up, to go sailing would have been a challenge!
“It looks as though tomorrow will bring 10 knots of breeze from the North East so we will be looking to make the very best of the remaining time to get as much of the programme in as possible,” concluded Truswell.
Click here to view all the action from day three of the RYA Volvo Youth National Championships 2012.
Day four of racing is set to commence at 10.25am for the RS:X’s, 10.55am for the blue and orange courses and 11.55am for 420’s and Spitfire’s tomorrow (Thursday 4 April) with three races scheduled for all classes apart from 29er with four.
For more information on the event or to follow all the live action from the Championship via the official RYA Volvo Youth Nationals blog visit www.ryaracingevents.org.uk, follow RYA Team GBR on Facebook or follow us on Twitter (@YouthNationals).
Article Author Matt Carter 4/4/2012 18:57
Photo © Paul Wyeth/RYA