Cowes Week Diary : Thompson defies the weather to win bumper cheque for charity

Though sailing is a water sport and we’re used to getting wet, somehow when it comes from the sky it’s just not right and it’s especially unpleasant when combined with light winds for racing. So it was unfortunate to see so much rain fall and only a light breeze on day three.

The winners continued leading their classes, but only one of the big boats has won all of their races so far, 1984 Olympic bronze medallist Jo Richards in his self-designed boat Woof in Class Seven.

Alex Thompson, on his Open 60 round the world yacht, won the evening’s Volvo Speed Challenge.

Held just off the Green, the perfect location for lots of spectators to watch the action, Thompson won the £1,000 prize money – which will be donated to the charity Sported – beating off challenges from kitesurfer Sam Lutman-Pauc as well as Olympic medallists Nick Dempsey and Paul Goodison.

Off the water, HRH The Princess Royal arrived in Cowes yesterday. She is the Admiral of the Royal London Yacht Club and they celebrated their 175th Anniversary last night so she joined them for their supper.

As one of my away-from-sailing jobs is being a pastry chef for the Queen I was tempted to offer my skills for their after dinner chocolates!

Today brings the start of the big boat series. These are the largest boats preparing for the Rolex Fastnet race which starts at the end of Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week.

Even as a seasoned sailor watching these rapid racing machines is exciting. They are so fast and so loud. I can’t wait to see the round the world boats in action.