In shore forecast was for a 5-7 with the shipping forecast going up to 8 so we knew it would be a windy one. Multiple problems pre-start with issues getting the main and the number 3 up in a strong breeze and we soon realised we needed at least one reef in. With the first reef sorted out we checked the apparent wind strength and it had gone up to 30 knots so the second reef was needed. Again issues with getting the reef sorted and the spare sail tied away which resulted in us being late for the start by about 3 minutes. Also as we were coming back to the line we heard three individual recalls for boats OCS. With the head start we gave everybody we thought we would be trailing the fleet around the course but we had some good boat speed and soon overtook one of the Impalas and by Ryde Sands we had got Blazer too with Pastime of Hamble just ahead. Past No Mans Land fort the angles improved for the Nab Tower and things calmed down a little and we thought we could dispense with the second reef, this lasted for only a short time as the wind picked up and we were over powered again. Reef back in and single tack all the way to the Nab Tower. Once round we shook out the reefs and changed to the old number 1 for the down wind leg back to the Forts. Bit of debate about getting the kite up before we passed the Forts but probably played on the safe side and waited till then. Good kite leg down the Solent with the tide under us and just a single jibe to make the finish. Pretty pleased with 4th after our poor start but probably would not have done any better considering the conditions even if we had started on time.