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bnwc 2003 speed trial arrangements

Every year for the past seven years or so we have attempted to hold a Speed Trial at one of the world's great speed courses - Portland harbour. This can be a really excellent event when it works.

Portland harbour, although not top drawer for speed sailing now, is still a truly top class venue for this sort of event (It's where the 30 knot barrier was broken). Providing you don't want to know your speed down to 27 decimal places, then our timing arrangements are more than satisfactory, and you come away with the knowledge of the true speed you are capable of in the conditions.

Sadly in the past, despite picking a date in the traditionally windy months of the year, we have been less than lucky with the weather. In the seven or so years we have been trying to run the trial, the wind gods have only managed to be on our side twice, with both of those occasions delivering less than perfect conditions. So this year we have devised a really-really cunning plan. Instead of just one date for the event; this year we have gone for a perm of any one from four.

The plan goes thus: In the events calendar are four dates when conditions should be at their best, with plenty of water and the promise of wind (equinoctal gales and all that). Each of these four dates has a choice of speed trial or an alternative venue. On the pub night preceding each date, armed with the weather forecast, we vote for Speed trial at Portland or the alternative venue. Once (if!!) the speed trial has happened, we then revert to the alternative venues for the remainder of the four dates. Anyone not at the pub night, just ring a member of the committee to determine the proposed location. Although if the forecast is Force 6 or more South-Westerly - head for Portland loaded for bear.

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