South Kent Race


The South Kent race is a long distance event all the way down to the South Kent Buoy, just inside Garrison Point. It's not as long as you'd think because we leave with a falling tide under us and should arrive at Garrison Point at low water and thus have the tide with us all the way back.

That's the theory and it depends on what time you leave and how fast you go as the starts are at 15 minute intervals. Whatever you do, you need to know what time low water at Sheerness is and this is normaly available in our sailing programme. In light winds with an unfavourable direction it can be a 4 hour race, but if everything works out well you could be finished in two.

A long leg is sailed down Saltpan Reach - that's the one past the container terminal (strangely called Thamesport). Then there's the very long reach which includes the jetty at Kingsnorth Power station which is called (sensibly) Long Reach and then again the other reach you'll know well, called Gillingham Reach. With a SSW these will be close reaches on the way back. However if its a westerly these will be a beat. Kethole Reach (where HMS Bulwark is wrecked) and Pinup Reach (where 23, 24 and 25 are) are the smallest of all the reaches.

These races are a good way to see the Medway as there is little risk since there is a safety boat nearby. Even if you don't complete the course you will have explored a part of the river which we rarely visit. But for those that do get round there's a sense of achievment - its a proper passage race. Some years it favours spinnaker boats other times not so. All I can say is give it a go.


Sorry, no report available.

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