Our report of the third day of racing in the traditional wooden yacht regatta.

Bodrum Cup Day 3

Monday 16th October

The second day’s racing route crossed the Gulf to an anchorage known as English Harbour from its role as a hideout for Special Boat Service vessels towards the end of World War II.  There was no wind and all save twenty boats fell victim to the international regatta rule which states ‘any boat failing to cross the start line within thirty minutes of the start of the race is disqualified’.  Amazingly Kaptan Şevket was the only boat in its class to cross the line so we knew we had come first hours before we reached the finish line.  Strange situation but that’s yacht racing for you.  Actually sailing the whole day meant we were unable to grab a prime spot for the evening’s concert, as all the disqualified boats had motored into English Harbour and anchored in front of the stage set up for Turkey’s famous singer Nilüfer to perform later that evening. 

Fethiye Times, along with other spectators who couldn’t get on board any of the yachts anchored in prime front row positions, watched the concert from the back but Nilüfer {mosimage}obligingly turned around from time to time.  After an hour or so of excellent performance the show was brought to an abrupt halt when someone on one of the anchored yachts fired a distress flare horizontally towards the shore.  Two members of the Fethiye Times party swear they felt the air part as it flashed by them before setting fire to a tree.  The concert came to an abrupt stop as what felt like everyone rushed with buckets, bottles of water and fire extinguishers to put out the fire. Apparently the Jandarma arrested the perpetrator but by that time Nilüfer had been hustled away by her bodyguards and the show was over. The story made the Turkish national press the next day.