Gosport Rally held on Saturday 20th - 21st May 2023

Firebird - Tim Applewhite,
Moody Maid - Dick Cole and John
Fairwind of Dell Quay - Sue and Barrie Pearson
Hi Time - Tony Booker and Angela
Opus IV - Jane and Peter Matthews,

High Water Dell Quay was at 13.05 with a keen northerly wind blowing, well, more north than the forecast northeast.  The wind proved to be perfect, allowing sails to be set for a sail down harbour and all the way to Portsmouth.

Opus IV and Firebird left their moorings at Dell Quay at about 11. Moody Maid suffered the long queue in Chichester Marina whilst Fairwind got away from her mooring early to arrive first in Gosport, and Tony came down from Thornham to join the rest of the fleet at our destination, Gosport Marina.

image1The wind provided a steady F4/5 all the way across Hayling Bay. With a perfect reach, Opus IV showed 5 to 6kt water speed all the way (if the Garmin log was to be trusted).  This made for an earlier than planned arrival at the marina, with a lot less tide through the entrance than expected.

Gosport Marina managed to berth the fleet fairly close together, but across two different pontoons.  We all gathered together on Opus for an evening drink and nibbles, then a short stroll to the Great Wall restaurant for a convivial and well served meal.

Overnight the marina was a tad disturbed by wind and occasional waves causing some disturbed sleep.  Possibly due to the wind direction, or passing traffic, something caused boats to roll seemingly without reason and at random, and masts set up an ethereal choral performance. Sunday’s wind was again North / North East, but blowing a good F5.

Four boats returned to Chichester on Sunday, and with Fairwind going on to Newtown and then joining the rally to Marchwood on the 23rd, Sue and Barrie were able to have a morning of leisure.  Meanwhile, Tim Applewhite sailing Firebird single handed set off for home early, followed by Tony and Angela in Hi Time, (to be found later sitting around near West Pole fishing for mackerel, apparently with some success!)  Next away  at about 9.30 was Opus IV, with one reef in the main, and one and a half in the foresail, fetching West Pole from Portsmouth at 5kt. Dick Cole in Moody Maid followed on, it was  a quick passage back to the harbour entrance.

Peter Matthews
Opus IV