As of 5:30 pm on Thursday, 23rd March, we have decided to postpone the season's first race. This decision is made on safety grounds for our competitors and other site users due to the strong winds forecasted for our race date of Saturday, 25th March.
The wind had settled throughout Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday morning, and the forecast was looking favourable. However, during a regular check of the forecasts, a change in the predicted wind speed and gusts during Thursday afternoon around 3 pm was sighted. With winds speeds now at our cut-off level of 22 mph and, more importantly, gusts predicted at over 40 mph, we have no choice but to call a postponement to our race.
Such strong winds will not only impact the racing on the water, but we must also consider safety around the event site, our safety teams on the water, and our volunteers manning race control. These factors have played a major part in our decision.
Over the past few days, we have tried to find possible scenarios based on physical evidence from forecasts and a willing volunteer getting down to Bewl and recording footage of various locations on and off the water. We had plans for alternate courses, updated times and schedules, but ultimately the forecasts and risks are beyond our comfort levels and what we deem safe to operate.
We appreciate that many of you are travelling long distances and that that journey has already begun for some. We apologise for any inconvenience this will cause you and hope you understand our decision.
Bewl Water is a fantastic location; the team has been incredibly accommodating. However, the weather is against us, and we must prioritise the safety of all those involved over anything else.
We will work with the Bewl Water and Kent Search & Rescue team to find a suitable date and publicise details as soon as possible.