THICK fog in Portland Harbour forced race officials at the RS:X Youth National Championships to cancel racing for the safety of the competitors.

The 29-strong fleet of windsurfers, the largest ever seen at a UK youth event, had been hoping for another four races on the waters off the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy.

The fleet assembled on the start line in a promising breeze of around 13 knots but an attempt to start racing was abandoned when visibility dropped significantly.

A waiting game then ensued as sailors, race officials and support staff waited for the fog to lift, but at 4pm, with the visibility still poor, the decision was made to call it a day.

The action will recommence tomorrow with four races scheduled.

“It was a frustrating day for everyone at the RS:X Youth Nationals but safety has to come first,” event director Tim Hall.

“Race management, mark layers and safety teams spent the whole day in Portland Harbour looking for a gap in the fog, but by 4pm the visibility was still at 100 metres in places.

“Sailors did get afloat earlier in the day, but the fog closed in and as the fleet couldn’t see the windward mark they were escorted back into the beach by the safety team.

“We are looking forward to a good last day with four races planned for Sunday.”

Follow the action from the final day of the RS:X Youth Nationals as it unfolds at British Youth Sailing’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.