On This Day – 24 September. A Newspaper History of Sailing

by Richard Crockett

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

1969. “Waiting for New Design”. The Johannesburg syndicate formed to put a yacht in the 1971 Cape Town to Rio race has decided to defer buying a boat until more is heard about a new American design.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1969 09 24 584 1

1970. “60 Yachts May Race”. The organisers of next January’s Cape to Rio yacht race expect a final entry list of at least 60 – and probably more. This week, the list stood at 42, with 27 of them South African, mostly from Durban and Cape Town.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1970 09 24 508_Redacted

1986. “Leaders Cross Equator”. The first three boats in the BOC single-handed around the world yacht race have all crossed the equator on their way to Cape Town on the first leg of this 43 000 km race.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1986 09 24 136

1989. “Winning Yacht Was Built to Fly”. Imagine a surfboard, 20 metres long, skimming down swells at 50 kilometres an hour, causing a spray five-metres high.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1989 09 24 030

1991. “Have ,Guts, Will Sail Round the World”. Sheer guts and single-minded determination. That’s what will get Sandy Duff through the Crystic Beachcomber Crossing and will help him to achieve his ultimate goal – to be the first paraplegic to circumnavigate the globe single-handed.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1991 09 24 788

1994. “Golden Chance to Reach Durban First”. An excellent day’s run of over 200 nautical miles has put the yacht Golden Sovereign well into the lead on actual position and handicap placings in the Point Yacht Club’s Mauritius Crossing race from Grand Baie to Durban.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1994 09 24 961

2005. “Missing Yacht: Piracy Ruled Out”. The sailing fraternity who are searching for six sailors onboard the Durban yacht Moquini, which went missing while participating in the Mauritius to Durban Race last week, have ruled out piracy as a possible reason as to why the men have note yet returned home.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  2005 09 24 517

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.