Cowes basks in the glow

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The Independent Online
Cowes has been a mixture of Mediterranean, Caribbean, and its good, old holiday-camp self for a regatta week that has obviously benefited from eight days of unbroken sunshine - and less obviously from an upturn in mood combined with a willingness to spend money and enjoy life that has been missing for several years.

That it should also be parading a new sponsor, Skandia Life, whose first of three injections of pounds 180,000 has kept the cost of racing down by pegging entry fees, is the sort of good fortune that many event organisers can only dream about. The chairman, Dan Bradby, said yesterday: "Things are in balance again."

There had been problems on the days when there was too little wind, and with too many starts from the same line. But, as for organising starts in other parts of the Solent to run concurrently: "With 800 other boats racing you cannot section off parts of Solent," Bradby said.

In the Rocking Chair Trophy for Class One yesterday Geoff Howison's Local Hero took the prize ahead of Graham Walker's Indulgence. Ireland's Colm Barrington was third in Surfing Shoes.

In the inter-company competition Ben Nicholls took surveyors Sedgewick's to a third win in Mediatore, and Eric Williams knocked up another win in the Dragons.

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