Historical

From The Archives. Voortrekker Regatta for Spearheads

by Richard Crockett Now here’s a real blast from the past for those who used to sail Spearheads. By now there can only be a smattering of them left on our local waters, with a guess being that most can now be found on inland waters. While archiving two huge boxes of Voortrekker archive material I came across mention of a trophy for Spearheads made from a sheet lead block from Voortrekker. Then yesterday I found this A3 poster – ... Read More »

Historical. NCS Regatta 1997

This was the year that PYC changed the format somewhat and included the dinghies – a positive move which regrettably did not find favour in certain circles and was dropped. As can be seen from the results, so top boats and very well known sailors competed. In the keelboats were Hanno Teuteberg; Shaun Ferry (better known as a top Hobie sailor); Dave Cox; Ernie Shaw; Mike Hopley and Patrick Holloway. In the dinghies were Mark Sadler; Dave Hibberd; Gareth Blanckenberg; ... Read More »

Historical. The NCS Regatta 1993

Way back in 1993 the NCS Regatta was followed immediately by the J22 Worlds. This year the MSC Regatta is being followed by the Lipton Challenge Cup. In this press cutting from 9 July 1993 are some names of people and boats who have made a mark in sailing in this country. Read More »

From the Voortrekker Archive

Now here’s a very interesting and unique pic from the Voortrekker archive I have in my posession. This archive has all the details of the concept of competing in the OSTAR, the formation of what is now the South African Ocean racing Trust (SAORT), crew selections, fund-raising and much much more … . Read More »

From the Archives – Crystic Week 1992

By Richard Crockett The MSC Regatta gets going again on 2 July. The July week of sailing off Durban is an event steeped in history, and which started off in the ‘70s as Mainstay Week, became the Crystic Ocean Challenge, Crystic Week and then the NCS Week. Here are some archived press cuttings from the 1992 Crystic Week event. Click on each of the links below to open them. NCS Regatta 1992 01 NCS Regatta 1992 02 NCS Regatta 1992 ... Read More »

1973 Cape to Rio Race Captured

  by Richard Crockett This image is just one of many that appeared in the Weekend Argus on the day after the start of the 1973 race. I was fortunate enough to have been given a complete copy of that Weekend Argus, so have been able to extract all references to the race. In that issue of the Weekend Argus alone there were 13 different articles, many accompanied with pics, on the start of this iconic race. It’s a treasure-trove ... Read More »

The South Atlantic Race. How It Was Proposed

by Richard Crockett Ever wondered how this race to Rio was established? Well here’s the answer – and you had better believe it as despite this being an undated newspaper cutting, it was loooong before the days of fake news. The race was proposed by Admiral H H Biermann, Chief of the South African Navy, when he and many other dignitaries welcomed Bruce Dalling home after his highly successful OSTAR race in 1968. It makes for interesting reading, and was ... Read More »

50 Years On – The OSTAR, Voortrekker & Bruce Dalling

by Richard Crockett The 1968 OSTAR race is still vivid in the minds of many who would be surprised to know that it is almost 50 years ago that the race set sail, and that sailing in South Africa was thrust onto the world stage by Bruce Dalling and his trusty steed ‘Voortrekker’. 1 June 1968 was the start of this epic race which was almost won by Bruce Dalling. It has been suggested over the years that had he ... Read More »

From the Archives. A Postcard from Napoleon!

by Richard Crockett While archiving a scrapbook collection of newspaper and other cuttings I was given for safekeeping some years ago, I could not help but be amused by this postcard of Napoleon’s arrival off St Helena. But what tickled me more was the inscription on the back, showing the date as 24 April 1816 – and being ‘signed’ by Napoleon! This postcard was sent to the Pragnell’s in 1968. Read More »

From The Archives. Castaway Ant

by Richard Crockett Due to the huge following my first post a couple of days ago created, I though another may be appropriate. ‘Castaway Ant’ is a legend throughout the sailing world – and a man highly respected as a yachtie. Interestingly he did somewhat hog the news headlines when he made contact at every landfall. The number of press cuttings I have of his exploits is simply phenomenal. Thanks for all the enjoyment Ant. Read More »

From the Archives. Ant Steward

Ant Steward was a household name in sailing circles in this country thanks mainly to his solo ‘open boat’ circumnavigation. He was in the news big time, and his following from landlubbers and sailors alike was huge. And then he was lost! He was wrecked on a remote island somewhere in the Seychelles, and lived like Robinson Crusoe until rescued. His wrecked yacht was ultimately shipped to Durban for repairs, before being shipped back to where he was wrecked so ... Read More »

From the Archives. Traditional Boats

This country used to have a Traditional Boat Association which, as I have not heard much about it for some years, must now assume it is defunct. Sad, but probably due to many of the old codgers who established and nurtured it no longer being with us. This pic, from the Cape Argus of 14 March 1992 shows a very youthful Rafe Axelson with George Askew preparing boats for a weekend rally. It seems though that the powerhouse of traditional ... Read More »

From the Archives. Young J22 Crew

This newspaper cutting refers to David Rae (18) as a top Pretoria yachtsman who has been selected to skipper a South African entry in the J22 Worlds in the USA. Rae has gone on to achieve great this in his sailing career, and is now a sailmaker with North Sails in Cape Town. But what of his crew Steven Kruger and Brett van Rooyen? Are they still around and more importantly still sailing? Read More »