It’s going to be a challenge today for the 46 yachts sailing in Sail Port Stephens 2012 Commodores Cup.
Gathering storm clouds. Commodores Cup day 1 Sail Port Stephens 2012
Its day two of this three day cruising regatta, part of the overall week of racing that runs though until Sunday, with more than 160 entries across the divisions.
There is a trough line parallel to the NSW coast bringing onshore showers and there are some very active cells.
Yesterday most of the cruising fleet managed to avoid the rain squalls on the Three Islands course offshore. Pretty spectacular cloud formations and even some developing water spouts were sighted.
Today… they might not be so lucky.
Both divisions in the Commodores Cup fleet will be sailing the Pub to Pub course within Port Stephens, it really should be called the Resort to Resort.
Once again the start will be on the Nelson Bay rock wall in front of the Fisherman’s Co-op at 11am.
The fleet will head east to an orange buoy near the Shoal Bay Resort, then west to Salamander Shores then to Soldiers Point, around Boondaba (Middle Island) Island, to a mark off Corlette Point and back to regatta headquarters at d’Albora Marina – 15 nautical miles in all while the smaller boats will sail a 13.5 mile course missing the Corlette mark.
The problem for the cruising fleet you can see if you look out the window is rain - not because sailors mind getting wet but because heavy rain squalls can just knock the breeze for six.
Looking at the various weather models we could get a healthy 14 knot breeze, or we might just see three knots - it’s very hard to predict.
For news, photos and results go to www.sailportstephens.com.au