On This Day – 23 September. A Newspaper History of Sailing

by Richard Crockett

To read the full reports, click on the LINK following each headline.

1970. “Garden-built Sloop for Race”. Among the shrubs and flowers of a Durban garden is an unusual sight. The large looming shape of a nearly-completed ocean yacht is clearly visible behind the hedge.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1970 09 23 541

1985. “Yachts Warm Up for Race to Durban”. The Lily Rose, once owned by the notorious Stander Gang, was again in the limelight here last night when her skipper, Peter Atkinson, was awarded the Reef-breaking Trophy for having struck coral on his arrival in Grand Bay, Mauritius, last week.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1985 09 23 – 000245

1987. “60 Yachts Ready for Race to Durban”. A fleet of 60 ocean-going yachts has assembled at Grand Baie, Mauritius, for Saturday’s start of the Crystic Beachcomber Crossing from the island to Durban – one of the top ocean races on the South African yachting calendar.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1987 09 23 – 000316

1989. “Durban Yacht Breaks Record by Two Days”. Durban maxi yacht, Get More Fun, smashed the record for the Crystic Beachcomber crossing by two days when she took line honours in just over six days, 12 hours and 43 minutes – and became last night the first Durban yacht to win the race.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1989 09 23 – 000142_Redacted

1991. “Two Cape Yachts Lead”. Two Cape Town yachts, Suburban Hardware, skippered by Rob Meek, and AMC Classic challenger, with Greg Davis at the helm, were yesterday leading the Crystic Beachcomber race rom Mauritius to Durban which started on Saturday.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1991 09 23 794

1994. “JJ Goes to Second”. South African J J Provoyeur stunned the BOC Challenge fleet yesterday as he flew into second position behind Frenchwoman Isabelle Autissier, who had extended her overall lead on her radical, high-tech yacht.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1994 09 23 989

2004. “Imperial Yacht Club Ready for Summer”. The Imperial Yacht Club is a dinghy yacht club based at Zandvlei, Lakeside.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  2004 09 23 491 copy

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

About “On This Day”
It was towards the end of September last year, yes 2019, that I started “On This Day. A Newspaper History of Sailing.” So nearly a year has passed without a day being missed and without there being any newspaper news or pics available in my newspaper archives to share.

It all started while I was 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 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, and that of our sport.

This is my personal crusade, and instead of simply archiving and keeping the contents away from prying eyes, I share my spoils in the hope that you will enjoy reminiscing as much as I do.

As of the end of September the format will change as it’s simply not sustainable to continue for another full year on a similar basis. I have some 25 000 scanned newspaper cuttings, and have used the best so far – but as in life some variation and change is required. What those changes are I have not crystallised yet, and would enjoy feedback from followers of this Blog as to what they would like to see.

I have tons of material available – from every single issue of SA Yachting, Yachtsman RSA (newspaper – remember it?) and Sailing Inland & offshore Magazine. Between those publications – from October 1957 until June 2017 – a period spanning 60 years of coverage of the sport of sailing in this country – I have in my possession.

I am scanning every single issue of those 60 years – that’s 720 issues – and digitising them to get the fullest value possible from them. So far I have uncovered some incredible gems in their pages, and will share these as we go.

Plus I have a photographic archive of photographs in b/w negative format, colour negative, colour slide (transparency) and photographic prints I intend to scan, digitise and share with the sailing community at large.

But all this takes time – and is a slow process – so all I ask is for patience.

My plea thought – to all followers and everyone interested in the history of sailing in RSA, is to please assist me by sharing their personal archives, pics, press cuttings and whatever with me, so that I can scan them and share them. My promise is that I will treat them with the utmost care, and get them back to you safely.

To date, the response to “On This Day. A Newspaper History of Sailing” has been phenomenal, and it’s heartening to see how many people appreciate, LIKE and SHARE the material I have shared in the past year. And this is from ‘Saffers’ and others who have lived and sailed here, or have travelled internationally to sail here.

I am overwhelmed by the response – and thank all those who have personally made contact.

Should you wish to copy, forward or share material from here, PLEASE acknowledge the source as: Sourced From the SAILING Mag Archives & Historical Records.

As each scanned cutting and article is searchable, I am 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) – for those who want a record of his/her sailing career for the family archives.

I have already done this by scanning in excess of 18 000 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.

The possibilities are endless – so watch this space as it all simply gets better every single day!

So sit back, grab a cup of your favourite brew, and enjoy what’s on offer today.