When doing talks and teaching Day Sailing / Long distance dinghy cruising, I tell students that there are 6 Abilities you must have : 1 The Ability to stop 2 The ability to Reduce Sail in a balanced way 3 Alternative propulsion 4 Know where you are 5 Be able to call for assistance 6 BE BRAVE ENOUGH NOT TO GO.
Last weekend after months of planning, meetings and organisation John & Jenny together with a very friendly yet professional Team demonstrated how important all of those 6 things are. We were met and greeted like old friends, and then as the wind howled round us our equipment and boat were subject to a very rigorous but fair safety check. We were given a very thorough briefing and the following morning the event was cancelled,regardless of the distance travelled by participants ( A lady had come from Brussels) every one I spoke to was in full agreement that it was not safe and the decision was correct.
Later as we all had a super sail up Southampton water this was reinforced by the numerous conversations heard on the VHF of yachts not leaving harbours, others changing their plans and the Coast Guard thanking a Lifeboat for the rescue of a dismasted yacht with its crew of 2 and finally as we drove away the Coast Guard helicopter was assisting someone out in the Solent.
Jenny, John & Team THANK YOU.
David & Simon