On This Day – 6 November. A Peek Into Our Sailing History

by Richard Crockett

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

With most cruisers doing their circumnavigations from East to West, Durban was always the first South African city they stopped in after a tough passages in the Indian Ocean. The city, “back in the day”, always received high praise from these intrepid yachties.

The second leg of the BOC Challenge was in countdown mode to the second leg start with John Martin and Bertie Reed tipped as being in a “hard battle”.

Remember Rothman’s Week? In 1987 more than 80 yachts were expected to enter, with the L34s likely to have their own class for the first time as 8 boats were expected from Natal.

SA super-yachts were in demand abroad, while a 1992 headline in the EP Herald indicated that “Pulling Weeds Led to High-seas Racing”. This is a delightful story.

1969. “Durban Earns World Praise – Yachtsmen”. Durban is world-renowned for fine weather, good hospitality and the availability of good jobs, according to two young yachtsmen who arrived in the port early today aboard their 33ft ketch, ‘Maristela’.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1969 11 06 607 10

1969. “‘Ellimatta’s’ A Yacht with A Difference”. According to her builders, ‘Ellimatta’, the luxury 45ft trimaran at present berthed at the Point Yacht Club’s main small boat jetty, is the biggest of its kind ever made in Australia – and one of the biggest in the world.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1969 11 06 607 18

1986. “Ocean Racers Prepare for Second Leg”. The countdown has started in Cape Town for the second leg of the gruelling round-the-world single-handed yacht race. With 21 contenders expected, the race itself appears likely to become a master-pupil battle with boat sailors South Africans.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1986 11 06 552

1987. “80 Yachts Expected for Top City Regatta”. More than 80 yachts are expected to enter next month’s Rothmans Week Regatta, with Cape Town yachtsmen eager to regain prestige lost after Natal boat ‘Gwaap’ sailed off with the laurels last year.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1987 11 06 1

1991. “SA Super Yachts In Demand Abroad”. Some of the world’s richest men are shopping in South Africa for high-tech super yachts that will hold their own in Monaco or Cowes.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1991 11 06 413 8

1992. “Pulling Weeds Led to High-seas Racing”. Shipmates Douglas Makafola and Alan Dando of Johannesburg, ready as ever for the Cape-to-Rio yacht race early next year, have come a long way since Douglas was employed by Alan as a gardener in 1973.
To read the full report, Click on the following LINK:  1992 11 06 428 13

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. Rathmines 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.