The Solway Yacht Club hosts a celebration weekend – on and off the water


The weekend was a celebration of the sail of the year – both on and off the water – at the Solway Yacht Club.

In addition to the penultimate racing weekend of the season, it was also about attracting the larger yachts to their winter berths ashore and one of the first social events to be held in the clubhouse since 2019.

However, Saturday dawned with a poor forecast, constant rain and moderate winds, but still weather conditions that allowed Race Officer Stewart Biggar to set a tough course while advancing under the watchful eye of the commodore of the immediate past, Lindsay Tosh.

In the bay, the main quick handicap riders were quickly followed by the others, all disappearing in the reduced and damp visibility. As the race progressed, it was the large asymmetric spinnaker of Alec Glendinning’s Vortex that emerged from the gloom in the lead and headed for the finish, but just as he was looking for the honors. off the line, he overcooked it, capsized and went swimming, recovering quickly but handing the victory to Stewart Mitchell in the Finn.

In race two, it was Colin Filer and Jamie Gascoigne on their Flying Fifteen keelboat to claim victory after finishing second in race two. Sadly, it was their weekend over with a boat damaged by a previous incident forcing them out.

Bishop’s GP14 chasing Purkis firefly to the finish

Saturday was not over as the clubhouse warmed up for another great night with Crane Supper, under the guidance of the club’s expert volunteer chef, Duncan Gillespie. A great evening ended when club commodore Robert Dinwiddie announced that the sum raised from attendees for the club’s chosen charity Marie Curie was almost £ 250.

Sunday dawned with a much brighter forecast, sunshine and initially light winds. The fleet was joined by James Bishop, taking a break from his studies and his role as dinghy captain at the University of Glasgow, who along with his sister Katie had their GP14 at the start line.

Today’s race officer John Broadbent had set an unusual course by taking the fleet into the waters off Rockcliffe, giving beachgoers a view of the grandstand, just as the light winds were blowing much stronger.

Fly the biggest kite!  Alec Glendinning's Fast Vortex, always spectacular!
Fly the biggest kite! Alec Glendinning’s Fast Vortex, always spectacular!

Once again, it was the Stewart Mitchell Olympic Finn who had a great victory, ahead of the rapidly improving Flying Fifteen of another sibling pairing Scott Train and Anne Stewart in second. Further in the fleet in the slower boats, Bishop’s crew GP14 was fine and Ian and Margaret Purkis’ Firefly was well beaten until they sailed to the wrong markup buoy, handing over their hard-earned place at the Firefly.

In the final race and achieving a three, two, one of the classifications in successive races, the Train / Stewart Flying Fifteen ended the day.

The weekend races have contributed twice to the club’s championship which, one more weekend away, is still wide open.

Final Fling Results: 1 Stewart Mitchell (Finn), 2 Scott Train & Anne Stewart (Flying Fifteen), 3 Keith Veasey (Finn), 4 Alec Glendinning (Vortex), 5 Colin Filer and Jamie Gascoigne (Flying Fifteen), 6 Scott McColm and Katie Bishop (RS400), 7 Jim Holland and Ian Murgatroyd (Flying Fifteen), 8 Ian and Margaret Purkis (Firefly), 9 James and Katie Bishop (GP14), 10 Richard and James Colbeck (Buzz).

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