MINI – FASTNET 2004

13-20 June – Douarnenez to Fastnet Rock and back 

The Course - 750 nautical miles

The race left Douarnenez on Sunday 16th at 3:10pm for the trip to the Fastnet Rock and back, passing between Land’s End and the Scilly Isles, some 700nm (although I logged 825!). It was quite an experience, luckily with moderate winds and flattish seas. However beating into the wind for three days was not something I would recommend and rounding the Fastnet and easing sheets was quite a pleasure.

The next two days were all downhill and it was great to see four other boats with us at the finish line. During the race we managed to blow two blocks, break the SSB radio and lose the navigation lights. The pilot remote control has also stopped working. When we got to the finish we realised that this was all quite minor… there were broken masts all over the place.

Pete and I crossed the finish line at 03.00, after five days eleven hours and fifty minutes and in 68TH place……… exhausted! The quay was buzzing though and we were soon sitting down to the biggest bowl of paella I have ever seen and a bottle of the local red. I had hoped to have a good night’s sleep prior to coming home but in fact had to get up at 02.30 to make sure that Eddie Higgs (GBR423 GUSTO) and I caught the St.Malo – Weymouth ferry.
I realised afterwards that I had travelled further non-stop during the race than I have ever travelled non-stop in a car before, and all at six miles per hour!

As I write this, on the following Wednesday, I am still very tired but satisfied that the race went well. My thanks go to the Winches club in Douarnenez for their fantastic organisation and hospitality and of course to Pete for his assistance and patience, and just to prove we were there...


Thanks to  
Glen Le Cheminant  for this fantastic picture and the others under 'photos'.

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