On this Day 14 October. A Peek Into Our Sailing History

by Richard Crockett

Today we go way back to 1969 at a time when the proposed first Cape to Rio Race was being setup, and interest was being shown far and wide, with the RNYC announcing a new build. We then jump to 20 years later when an Irish sailor was rescued in the South Atlantic. Remember ‘Get More Fun’? Well she was sold by her Durban owner to Tuna Marine. And Bertie Reed took 42 days aboard Grinaker to get to the start of Globe Challenge.

1969. RNYC yacht for race to Rio. The RNYC announced that it would sponsor and construct a van der Stadt 42 light displacement yacht for the 1971 Cape to Rio Race. CLICK on this link to read all about it:  1969 10 14

1989. Norwegian freighter saves Irish yachtsman. A 63-year-old Irish sailor trying to circumnavigate the world said that he owed his life to the crew of a Norwegian freight who rescued him after his yacht was damaged in heavy seas. CLICK on this link to read all about it:  1989 09 14 377 10

1989. Top yacht on its way to the Cape. ‘Get More Fun’. The recent line-honours winner of the Crystic Beachcomber Crossing, will sail today for the Cape Town after it was sold to Cape company Tuna Marine. CLICK on this link to read all about it:  1989 10 14 379 3

1989. Reed makes it in 42 sailing days. Bertie Reed sailed his new maxi ocean racer, ‘Grinaker’ into a marina at Les Sables d’Olonne in France early yesterday , 42 days after leaving Cape Town, to take part in the Globe Challenge non-stop single-handed race around the world. CLICK on this link to read all about it: 1989 10 14 a 379 2

Comments and contributions are welcome. Email: editor@sailing.co.za

What is “On this Day” About?
I am busy archiving many boxes of press cuttings I have accumulated and which I guestimate run into tens of thousands! A daunting task which I believe to be necessary before ditching them as I have been concerned for many years about the lack of interest Clubs, Classes and other sailing related organisations give to preserving their history.

This is my personal crusade, and instead of simply archiving and keeping the contents away from prying eyes, I will share my spoils in the hope that you will enjoy reminiscing as much as I have, and continue to do as I wade through the labourious process of scanning each and every cutting in my archives.

As each scanned cutting will be searchable, I will be able to create presentation packs personally tailored to a persons exact requirements – ie. Rothmans Week, the NCS Regatta, the Rio Race, Mauritius Race, Vasco da Gama Race and more – or simply by the name of an individual (like Ant Steward and his open boat exploits) who want a record of his/her sailing career for the family archives.

I have already done this by scanning in excess of 4000 pages of material I have on ‘Voortrekker’ – from idle chatter, to concept, to the formation of what ultimately became the South African Ocean Racing Trust (SAORT), to the fruition of the 1968 OSTAR Race in which Bruce Dalling and ‘Voortrekker’ excelled – and even beyond that.

Comments and contributions are welcome. Email: editor@sailing.co.za

The possibilities are endless – so watch this space.