“Talking Sailing” by Richard Crockett – issue 29

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issue – 29
26 March 2015

by Richard Crockett

Where does all the time go? Apologies for the big time lapse between issues, but time … !

I will endeavour to do better as my goal is to publish “Talking Sailing” at least twice a month.

In the last issue I mentioned the ‘fun’ aspects of sailing, and this matter quite by chance was recently raised in international circles as being something we tend to overlook in our sport. More of that later.

The 505 SA Nationals has started and is followed on Sunday with the World Championships. It is good to see the class has attracted some good international entries.

Talking About…
• SAP 505 World Championships
• Some Nostalgia
• Let Junior Sailors Have Fun and They Just Might Learn to Love Sailing
• NSRI – an unnecessary call-out
• Wine From Civil War-era Shipwreck Mary-Celestia Uncorked
• An ‘Olympic’ Bouquet
• Our RSA Olympic Hopefuls
• SAMSA Marine Notice No 4 of 2015.
• Vestas Wind Grounding Report
• A Rant about Judge Certification
• Vasco da Gama Ocean Race
• Soling Class 50th Anniversary
• How True! This simply needs to be said!
• I Like This!
• A Lasting Gift – A subscription to SAILING Magazine
• Sailor of the Month – Submit Your Nomination NOW
• Some Selected Responses to “Talking Sailing”

SAP 505 World Championships
The 60th 505 World Champs are underway in Port Elizabeth and being hosted by Algoa Bay Yacht Club.

I sometimes have a very jaundiced view of World Championships in this country especially when they simply don’t attract sufficient international entries and become glorified national championships.

That’s not the case with this event as the bulk of the fleet is made up of international competitors, with more than a smattering of World Champions here to compete in South African waters. Two competitors have previously competed in world championships off Durban, being Ian Pinnell in a Fireball and Howard Hamlin in a 505. Plus there are more, so the competition will be there – of that there is no doubt.

It will be a fascinating event as the local contingent will be viewing this as ‘their chance’ to secure a World Championship title. Some of the local guys have been putting in an immense amount of time on the water, so we wish them all well.

The ABYC appears to have put in a ton of effort and have transformed their club for the event. Well done.

The South African entrants are as follows:
Peter & Thomas Funke
Andrew Arthur & John Anderson
Alexander & Warwick Ham
Gideon Snyman & Courtney Ballantyne
Anthony Parker & Ferdinand Holm
Kyle Klaas & Robert Von Gruenewaldt
Albrecht Holm & Marius Fourie
James Largier & Richard Hutton-Squire
Sigi Bailes & Dudley Isaacs
Kevin Foreman & Adam Van Der Ploeg
Jonathan Ham & Dietmar Holm
Ricky & Brennan Robinson
Euan Hurter & Cyril Foley
Kristina Plattner & David Shelton
Grant Ballentyne & Evert Groenewaldt
Hans Rogotski & Peter Roos
Kobus Holtzhausen & Danie Kirchner
Bronwen Klaas & Aaron Tellen

Follow the event at: https://www.505worlds2015.com/

Some Nostalgia
In doing some research recently I came across the results of the Fireball Worlds held off Durban in 1980. They read like a ‘who’s who’ of sailing in this country.

The event was won by Kim Slater & Richard Parslow – Parslow was also known as ‘animal’.
2nd was JJ Provoyeur and Terry Twentyman-Jones
3rd was Dave Hudson & Terry Reynolds
6 Rick Nankin & John Kelly
10 Les Nathanson & Dudley Kelbe
13 Terry Clarence & Derek Warne
15 Jurgen Coblenz & Tony Kitchen
16 Chris & Dave Kitchen
17 Doug Alison & Anton Ellens
]19 Walter Davy & Gordon Parker
20 Topher Hancock & Ralph Thomas
21 Rob de Vlieg & Thomas Burnard
22 Peter Morgenrood & Dennis Lapham
25 Geoffrey Jackson & Tony Locke
27 Joao Viera & Antonio Simoes

There are many of these guys who have simply not been heard of for decades – which is a pity. If anyone has info on where some of these guys are and whether they still sail, please pass it on to: editor@sailing.co.za

Let Junior Sailors Have Fun and They Just Might Learn to Love Sailing
The above heading in the Scuttlebutt news caught my attention as that headline is exactly the drum I have been beating for many years. It hit the nail squarely on the head and has people thinking. Now, someone other than myself has written about it, and from the number of people who contacted me, it appears that it has opened their eyes too, and they see a new way forward without having to push kids into racing and structures which are – simply too structured.

So here it is as written by Chris Caswell for SAILING Magazine in the USA, and unabridged:
I don’t need fancy statistics to tell me that, using my group of friends from the 1960s as an example, kids who have fun sailing stay in sailing. We learned self-reliance, decision making and skills that have served us for a lifetime. It was fun.

As a kid, I had a conversation with my mother almost every weekend after I departed in the morning, not to return until dinner time.

“Where did you go?”

“Out.”

“What did you do?”

“Nothing.”

All of my friends had exactly that same interview. And the answer, “nothing,” was completely accurate. We did nothing. And everything. There were empty lots and playgrounds where I would find my friends, and we would amuse ourselves riding our bikes or playing war or simply doing nothing.

It is what I’ve come to understand as “The Joy of Unstructured Fun”.

Sure, there were streets and cars and dangers, but I rode my bike to school, enjoyed pals without parental meddling, and savoured deciding how to spend my day. In the process, I learned about many things: friendship, fun, being responsible, thinking for myself, being safe and growing my independence.

Today, I see lines of parents driving their children to school and later, sitting in their cars on their cellphones, waiting for the sullen and bored kids to get out of school. On weekends, there aren’t conversations like the one with my mother, because kids’ lives are filled with soccer or judo, baseball or cheerleading. A local YMCA says they take pride in “filling kids’ discretionary hours with caring adult attention.”

Kids don’t need their discretionary hours to be filled with adult attention. They need those hours to be just that: discretionary for their own fun and growth.

Oh, wait, this is a sailing magazine. Sadly, the same thing applies to sailing. Sailing is one of the few truly unstructured sports left, and yet too many organizers of junior programs and the national association seem dead set on imposing structure on it.

At a yacht club for brunch, I watched as the junior sailors, of an age when I was taking off in my dinghy and sailing nowhere, were herded by their helicopter parents through a rigorous calisthenics program led by the sailing coach to strengthen young leg muscles for hiking out longer and to build the little arm muscles so these kiddies could pump their sails endlessly in a mindless goal of winning.

After the workout, the parents (not the kids) rigged their kids’ prams with the most exotic sails and masts. There was an hour of tacking practice followed by jibing practice, all with the coach shouting instructions from a chase boat.

Eventually the kids had a few races, which were excruciatingly boring windward- leewards with few tactics and even fewer challenges. Then back to the dock where the parents put the prams away and everyone climbed into their SUVs to head home. A totally structured day with no chance for individual thinking and certainly no fun. The kids couldn’t wait to start playing their video games. Every discretionary hour had been filled with adult attention.

I’ll tell you this: I would have quit the junior program after two weeks of that pressure and monotony. At their age, I was having fun on the water. My junior sailing club had races three days a week in the summer that were always a challenge, with marks scattered over a long bay with an infinite number of possible courses. During those races, I learned to read the wind, figure out tactics that changed with every course, and learned by doing without having a coach or video reruns to critique my mistakes. It was about fun, not winning.

On the non-racing days, we sailed together or separately, sometimes winding up on the same sandbar or at a beachside hamburger stand. We had water fights, we had pursuit races where we learned to handle our boats with pride and precision, and we – wait for it – learned to think for ourselves. It was unstructured.

With no coach or parent boats chasing us, we made decisions based on our best judgments and, if we were wrong, it tempered our future decisions. If something broke, we figured out how to fix it, often calling in the best minds of our pals. It was years before we knew the phrase jury-rig and we solved our problems without parental hovering.

There is a general wailing that kids drop out of sailing when they’re too old for junior programs. The director of U.S. Olympic sailing has lamented that the pool of young sailors is dwindling and perhaps that’s why the United States won not a single sailing medal in the 2012 Olympics.

A light went on when I received one of those dreadful high school reunion emails that updates what everyone has been doing for the past decade. As I went through the names, I discovered something very telling.

Every one of the kids that I sailed with from about the age of 12 to high school graduation is still sailing. They are casual sailors and weekend racers, some of us won championships, but all are still on the water.

I don’t need fancy statistics to tell me that, using my group of friends from the 1960s as an example, kids who have fun sailing stay in sailing. We learned self-reliance, decision making and skills that have served us for a lifetime. It was fun.

Not every yacht club is locked into those winning-is-everything? junior programs, and I applaud the clubs that encourage kids to have fun. Clubs that think boring drills are the answer need to step back and reexamine their programs. Perhaps they should ask how many of their kids actually go sailing by themselves just for the fun of it.

Because, after all is said, it is the joy of unstructured sailing that lasts a lifetime.

NSRI – an unnecessary call-out
The NSRI volunteer force has some truly remarkable men and women in its ranks. They will stop at nothing to rescue people, but unnecessary call-outs could be the ‘straw which broke the camels back’.

The following was received form their organisation recently:
“At 11h49, Saturday, 21st March, NSRI East London duty crew were activated by the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) following reports from lifeguards at Gonubie Beach that they were launching Rescue Malibu Boards to respond to assist two men on a Hobie Cat sail craft appearing to be in difficulty off-shore.

“NSRI East London responded towing our LOTTO rescue runner which was launched at Gonubie.

“On arrival on-scene, just behind the breakers, local sailors, a 22 year old male and a 21 year old male, were being assisted by lifeguards, using their Rescue Malibu Boards, keeping the Hobie Cat from drifting into the surf line and both men were safe and not injured on their Hobie Cat which had suffered a broken sail mast.

“NSRI towed them safely to shore with the damaged Hobie Cat and assisted to get the Hobie Cat back onto her trailer and they required no further assistance.

“SAMSA (South African Maritime Safety Authority) will investigate the incident.

“It appears that lifeguards had appealed to the sailors to rather not launch, because of strong rip currents present, and it appears that they may have had no safety equipment or lifejackets onboard.

“It was not clear what had caused the mast to break.”

NSRI urge anyone launching any kind of craft onto water (inland or coastal waters) to wear a properly fitting life-jacket or PFD (Personal Floatation Device) at all times while on water and carry safety equipment, a handheld VHF radio or Cellphone with fully charged batteries and stored in water tight plastic sleeves, a signalling mirror or small computer CD disc (on a neck string), a waterproof torch, a referee whistle, red distress flares, adequate bright coloured gear and know how to use the safety equipment.

Also let a responsible person know your departure time, intended route, return time and stick to the plan – everyone involved in your water experience must have sea rescue and emergency contact numbers programmed into their phones.

NSRI’s Safetrx, a smartphone app for water users, can be viewed at our web page at www.nsri.org.za and is recommended to anyone launching any kind of craft onto water.

ALL YACHTIES – please be aware of the above and be sensible when boating, especially when launching and sailing in the sea, and now that the holiday ‘silly season’ is upon us again. Plus, unnecessary foolish incidents like this give SAMSA a rod to beat us. Let’s not give them that pleasure.

REMEMBER, you are not a survivor until rescued.

Wine From Civil War-era Shipwreck Mary-Celestia Uncorked
A bottle of wine recovered intact four years ago from the 1864 wreck of a Civil War blockade runner that sank off the coast of Bermuda has been uncorked and sipped by a panel of experts during a food festival in Charleston, South Carolina.

The verdict: A heady sulphur bouquet with distinct notes of saltwater and gasoline.

About 50 people bought tickets to watch as a panel of wine experts decanted and tasted it.

“I’ve had shipwreck wines before,” master sommelier Paul Roberts said.

“They can be great.”

This one, obviously, was not.

To peals of audience laughter, the panel said the cloudy yellow-gray liquid smelled and tasted like a mixture of crab water, gasoline, salt water and vinegar, with hints of citrus and alcohol.

The wine was one of five sealed bottles recovered by marine archaeologists from the Mary-Celestia, an iron-hulled side wheel steamship that sank under mysterious circumstances during the US Civil War.

An ‘Olympic’ Bouquet
Much has been written about the quality of the water off Rio that the 2016 Olympic Games sailing will be on.

Just recently thousands of dead fish were found floating where next year’s Olympic sailing events are to be held. This discovery was at the same time as a visit by International Olympic Committee inspectors, in Rio to check up on the city’s progress in preparing for the games!

Rio Governor Luiz Fernando Pezao, said the city was working to meet its pledge to treat 80 percent of the sewage in the sprawling urban area that rings the bay. While the lion’s share of sewage has long flowed, raw, into the bay, Pezao said 49 percent of the area’s sewage was now being treated. Still, he acknowledged that Rio is unlikely to meet its goal of 80 percent treatment.

Water quality has become a hot-button issue as the Olympics draw closer with little sign of progress in cleaning up the fetid bay, as well as the lagoon system in western Rio that hugs the sites of the Olympic park, the very heart of the games.

Athletes visiting Rio in recent months for test sailing events complained about health risks and the hazards of encountering floating debris in the waters where they’ll compete.

Despite that, Nawal El Moutawakel, the head of the IOC inspection team in Rio this week, said, ‘We have been given the assurance that all the venues’ will be clean enough ‘so that athletes can compete in a safe and secure manner.’

I would suggest that every Olympic sailor should start taking probiotics now as one measure of preventing illness during the event.

Our RSA Olympic Hopefuls
Talk of Rio 2016 always makes me think of the unbelievable effort that Asenathi Jim and Roger Hudson are making in the hope of qualifying the country to compete in Rio next year.

Saying one has an Olympic Campaign on the go is very different to actually striving single-mindedly to achieve the goals.

Early in March Roger invited two international 470 teams to Cape Town for training in the Northern Hemisphere winter. And being the broad-minded and ‘think out of the box’ type, he also had several youth teams included so that they could experience first-hand what goes into an Olympic sailing campaign.

Following two weeks of intensive 470 training involving teams from Canada, Sweden and South Africa, including 10 young South African sailors, the camp was wrapped up with a regatta off Granger Bay, beneath the majestic Table Mountain and right in the City of Cape Town.

“We are starting small with this, but we would love to see it GROW,” said Hudson. “To all those around the world – feel free to come and join us next time here in South Africa!”

Philip Baum, President of SAS (South African Sailing) was more forthright in his wishes: “The photographs bring this training event to life and put a Big Stake in the ground laying claim to Granger Bay being a preferred global off season sail training centre. From humble origins come great traditions.”

Interestingly enough, Roger and Asenathi have, since October 2012:
• had over 220 training sessions in South Africa.
• involved 35 young SA sailors (age 16 to 23) in these training sessions.
• had 7 international 470 sailors from Canada, Sweden, Germany and France visit South Africa to train with them and against the youth squad.
• Each year the best young sailor from the squad has been selected to attend international 470 events.
• in 2013 Sibu Sizatu (21)
• in 2014 Alex Burger (18).
• They teamed up with Asenathi on the boat and Roger as coach, achieving strong results as follows:
16th/60 at the u-21 Worlds 2013
7th/27 at the u-21 Europeans 2013
5th/23 at Kiel Week 2014.

Their campaign is not a selfish one, but one which shares knowledge, experience and training with up-and-coming sailors who too, one day, may well go on to represent RSA at the Olympics and international events.

While I have focussed specifically on Roger & Asenathi here, I am always mindful of the effort being made by our other Olympic campaigners in Stefano Marcia (Mens Laser) and Graeme Willcox and Andrew Tarboton who are campaigning a 49er.

If these guys were not making an effort to qualify for Rio 2016, as South African yachties we would in all likelihood have no-one to support, follow and cheer for. How sad would that be?

SAMSA Marine Notice No 4 of 2015.
Cessation of 29Mhz SOLAS Distress Watch Keeping by Telkom Maritime Services
Those who sail at sea and are obliged to have marine radio frequency equipment should read the entire Marine Notice as below are simply some key highlights of what was published. For the full notice go to: http://www.samsa.org.za/sites/samsa.org.za/files/MN%204%20of%202015.pdf

• The existing analogue shore based radio equipment will be replaced by digital equipment. For small vessels to interact with the digital equipment, a VHF radio with DSC capability is required. This will also ensure interoperability between all vessels.

• A DSC distress alert sent on VHF CH 70 has the following advantages over the traditional radiotelephone Mayday call transmitted on VHF CH 16:
a. A digital signal travels further than a voice signal – improved range of transmission;
b. Distress alert (undesignated) provided with the single press of a button;
c. The position is included in the initial distress alert.

• VHF CH 16 aural watch keeping will be maintained by Telkom Maritime Services until April 2018 to allow all vessels to make the transition to DSC carriage.

• 29 Mhz and 2182 khz aural watch-keeping by Telkom will cease with effect from 01/07/2015.

• Due to the cessation of the SOLAS watch keeping by the South African coast stations on 29 Mhz it will no longer be appropriate for small vessels to carry 29 Mhz radios as a safety option in terms of item 18, Annexure 2 of the Merchant Shipping (National Small Vessel Safety) Regulations 2007.
Categories of vessels covered by these regulations shall be equipped with VHF Marine Radios to comply with the safety requirement.

• In summary, vessels may continue to carry 29 Mhz radios as voluntary fit equipment for intership communications, communications with clubs etc., however, these radios will no longer be appropriate to fulfill the safety requirements of the regulations from 01/07/2015.

ED. In case anyone is not aware, all commercial aircraft still monitor the 121.5mhz frequency. According to Gavin van der Meulen, Chairman of the SAS Safety at Sea Committee and a retired airline pilot: 121.5 is still the international aviation distress frequency used by aircraft to declare an emergency, it is also embedded in the EPIRBS for direction finding for rescue craft.

Vestas Wind Grounding Report
An independent report into the grounding of Team Vestas Wind on Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race has been released. It included a set of recommendations aimed at improving safety at sea for the entire offshore racing community.

In particular, it has suggested improving navigational charts and other on board software to avoid similar incidents in the future.

The independent report into the incident, commissioned by the Race in December, was conducted by acknowledged experts in the field – Rear Admiral (Rtd) Chris Oxenbould (chair), Stan Honey and Chuck Hawley.

The panel reported that the facts of the grounding had already been well publicised and that its findings regarding what happened are based on interviews with the crew, race management, other relevant parties and recorded data were not contentious.

“The team was unaware of any navigational danger in its vicinity, incorrectly assessed the minimum charted depth at Cargados Carajos Shoals to be 40 metres and understood that it was safe to sail across the shoals,” summed up the panel.

The panel has not apportioned blame, but made the following conclusions:
I. There were deficiencies in the use of electronic charts and other navigational data onboard Vestas Wind.
ii. There were also deficiencies in the cartography presenting the navigational dangers on the small and medium scales of the chart system in use.
iii. The emergency management worked well and there were no administrative or race management issues that contributed to the incident.

Its main recommendations are:
I. That a provided set of guidelines for the use of electronic charts be endorsed and adopted in the race and subject to further review and refinement.
ii That the providers of the chart system used and the manufacturers of one of the on board navigation software systems be advised of the perceived deficiencies.
iii. The panel suggests that Volvo Ocean Race uses its leverage and influence in the yachting industry to encourage the development of an improved navigation system, including charts and software.

It also made five minor recommendations (page 63, paragraph 262) relating to the conduct of the race.

See the full report at:
http://www.volvooceanrace.com/static/assets/content_v2/media/files/m36616_team-vestas-wind-inquiry-report-released-on-9-march-2015.pdf

A Rant about Judge Certification
There are many yachties out there who believe that some of the International Judges’ appointed by ISAF simply don’t cut the mustard, yet they get re-appointed by ISAF without a Member National Authority (MNA) having any say in the matter.

by Glenn McCarthy
Don’t misunderstand this, let me be very clear that certifying judges in the sport of sailboat racing is a very good thing. It’s the machinations in the background that makes certifying judges a ridiculous thing.

Long ago, originally sail racing judges were appointed for life. After ages, what occurred is there were judges who were literally going senile and kept thumping their chests insisting on judging because they had a badge that said they were certified. Many of these judges had not sailed in decades and had stopped keeping up with the new rules changes that come out each four years.

So, the judges program changed to a seminar based system with testing every four years with input on judicial temperament in order to be certified. The senile judges were washed out. That was a very good step. And would have remained good if it stopped right there.

Where things started to fall apart is when they didn’t stop. They decided that some judge’s poop doesn’t stink and needed to separate those judges from other judges, and created “Senior Judges” (recently renamed “National Judges”). In all practicality, however, there just isn’t natural or artificial demand for using certified judges.

In most races in the U.S., we grab three sailors who are our competitors that we have respect for and let them judge a protest hearing. You “don’t have to have no stinkin’ badges” to judge. The only events that I have found that require “National Judges” are those run by US Sailing. Who needs a conspiracy theory? Then, good luck finding any other events nationwide that require certified judges at all (other than national, continental, or world championships, but even then not required in many cases). Demand is quite small for certified judges.

Then the people who run the judges program decided to get even goofier. Now they require senior/national judges to travel outside their Regional Sailing Association to events three times a year in order to stay certified, just to see how others handle protests, to get a broader experience, blah, blah, blah. Excuse me? The process and procedures are written in the Racing Rules of Sailing and found in the US Sailing Judges Manual. The format is spelled out and established.

Travelling shouldn’t change a thing; it is the same thing wherever you go. It’s just more of this “some judge’s poop doesn’t stink” thing again limiting the fancy moniker “National Judge” to only those who have the money, time, and inclination to travel (remember not all events have protests; there’s no guarantee they get to hear protests by Travelling … and many times return empty handed).

This thing just doesn’t end – it’s a solution looking for a problem. Now there’s Continuing Education Events (CEE) and Continuing Education Units (CEU) where certified judges are required to earn 80 CEUs. For what? There’s just no major demand for certified judges. The higher the bar is set, the more judges are quitting. There’s no loss, protests continue to get heard regardless of how serious they keep making the requirements.

A small glimmer of hope is gleaming; an online course is being created for “Club Judges” (for those whose poop must really stink, at the bottom level). Why it can’t it be simplified that either you are certified judge or not, and use one training platform for all judges, and one manual for all judges? This ain’t rocket science, it’s not even close.

One reality of hearing protests is, two boats walk into the room believing they are right. At the end, one or both will have found out they were wrong and they are always upset. It doesn’t make any difference if the judges are certified or not.

I’ve got news for these judge zealots who run the program; either a person “gets the rules and the procedures,” or they don’t. Period. All we need, or want, are judges who “get it.” Just give us one class of people who are “certified judges” who took an online seminar and passed an online test along with input on their “judicial temperament.” Don’t make it complicated, expensive, or make people travel away from home for a useless waste of their time.

This thing has become so utterly complicated and ridiculous. We’re already seeing many judges give up their certifications (more are giving up as their 4 year terms expire), and they’re not senile yet!

All of the fanaticism you judge program zealots have and exude should be saved for your religious efforts at your house of worship.

ED. The above comments were published in the Lake Michigan SuRF Newsletter, March 2015.
This is a problem ISAF need to resolve quickly as it affects all sailors, even those here in good old RSA. We have judges who simply don’t perform, and cannot perform, as some event organisers won’t have them as they don’t have confidence in their ability. Sad but true.

Vasco da Gama Ocean Race
This classic race which is being raced for the 44th time since 1968, has so far attracted entries from 15 boats – with more in the wings expected to come in as the entry deadline looms.

The new course from Durban to Port Elizabeth has certainly stoked many fires and got people talking and entering the event early. Organisers are still hopeful of a fleet of 20 boats.

This is one of the few races that permits multihull entries, but so far just one cat entry has been received, although there have been enquiries from other cats including a ‘super-large and super-luxury’ cat.

The race will be tracked this year by YellowBrick who track many of the major ocean races in the world. This tracking has kindly been sponsored by Phil Gutsche via GIMCO (Gutsche Investment & Management Company).

As the start is at 12h00 on Saturday 25 April, a farewell crew breakfast has been sponsored by MDM Marine Services, suppliers of Raymarine products in RSA.

Entries to date are:
1 Al Mount Gay Rum      Rob van Rooyen                      Farr 38                       IRC
2 Majimoto                       Jon Marshall                            Farr 38                       IRC
3 Nemesis                         Anthony Bailes                        Fast 42                       PHRF
4 Bellissima                      Vernon & James Goss           Hanse 401                  PHRF
5 Yolo                                Dale Kushner                           Sunfast 3200             IRC
6 Bellatrix                         Gregg Hurter                           First 40                       IRC
7 Gumption                      Nicholas Mace                         Simonis 40                 IRC
8 Ray of Light                  Michael & Heidi Kavanagh   First 44.7                    IRC
9 Rocket                           Herbert Karolius                      Simonis 54                 IRC
10 Alkistis                        Christo Moller                          Sun Odyssey 40         Rally mono
11 JML Rotary Scout     Grant Chapman                       Tosca 39                      PHRF
12 Star Spirit                   Willie Pretorius                       Sun Fizz 40                 PHRF
13 Numzaan                    Ron Schwalbach                      Prout cat                     catamaran
14 Deo Volente               Trevor Donald                          Lavaranos 36             PHRF
15 Alacrity                       Dave Taylor                               Taylor 37                    IRC

Information from Lucy de Freitas – sailing@pyc.co.za

Follow, share and like the Vasco da Gama Ocean Race on Facebook. There are already over 600 LIKES, so join now and keep abreast of the race as this will be the primary source through which information is disseminated. Follow it at:
https://www.facebook.com/VascodaGama2015

The race website is at: www.pyc.co.za/vasco-2015/

Soling Class 50th Anniversary
Peter Forshaw of HMYC informed me that the International Soling Class celebrates its 50th Anniversary this year. Yes, the class was founded in 1965.

He advises that there are 5 Solings at Midmar, and during the recent 9-Hour event 3 competed.

Foreshaw said: “lets resurrect the Soling. We would love to encourage more Solings at Midmar as it is a great venue for the boat. We were even talking about maybe having a Soling Nationals some time!! They are such a classic old boat it would be great to see then back again.

This was a strong class at one point in this country, with many a top yachtie campaigning these boats. If anyone has any info on the class, where boats are and in fact anything historical or interesting, please pass it on to: editor@sailing.co.za

How True! This simply needs to be said!
My people skills are just fine. It’s my tolerance to idiots that needs work.

I Like This!
I’ve got to stop saying “How stupid can you be?” Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

A Lasting Gift – A subscription to SAILING Magazine
Need a gift for a loved one, sailing friend or crew? A subscription to SAILING Magazine will last the whole year round as we produce 12 issues per year – and it costs just R250 per year.

Call 031-7096087 or e-mail: derri@sailing.co.za

Subscriptions are available as a printed magazine OR a digital e-zine. Your choice.

Sailor of the Month – Submit Your Nomination NOW
SAILING Magazine, in conjunction with MDM Marine Services, North Sails and Southern Spars, back the ‘Sailor of the Year’ Award.

Monthly winners are featured in SAILING Magazine, with the overall ‘Sailor of the Year’ receiving a substantial cash prize.

Who can make nominations?  Anyone (individuals, clubs, class associations or administrators) may submit nominations.
What are the criteria?  The award is strictly for ‘sailing excellence’ or in exceptional circumstances, for ‘dedication to the sport’.
What is the procedure?  All nominations must be fully motivated in writing, and must be accompanied by a head-and-shoulders picture of the candidate, plus an action sailing pic aboard his/her boat (unedited hi-resolution (300dpi) digital images are required). Motivations must include current performances, a brief CV of the nominee, and other pertinent, personal background information (age, school, employment, home town etc) so that an interesting editorial on the winner may be written. Failure to submit the required material will result in the nomination not being considered.
Deadlines. Nominations must be received by the 1st of every month, although this may be extended at the Editor’s discretion, so it is recommended to submit them as soon as possible.

If you think there is a sailor worthy of nomination, simply send the nomination with a motivation and a photo of the person to – editor@sailing.co.za

Some Selected Responses to “Talking Sailing”
● Thanks Richard, another good issue. On the subject of pollution of our oceans, there is a major problem that gets no attention at all and deserves much concern. Not as big a problem in SA as here in USA but nevertheless it is an issue everywhere that there are people celebrating near to the ocean or waterways.

Helium balloons are used for all sorts of marketing and parties, we see them at car dealerships, real estate events, graduations, weddings etc. When no longer needed they are often set free to drift off to the clouds. A couple of years ago I was on a deserted beach in North Carolina, nobody else in sight. I saw scraps of balloons along the high tide line, lots of them. I found a plastic shopping bag and walked a couple of miles picking up all of the balloons that I saw. There were hundreds, many with ribbons, some of them latex and the rest plastic (Mylar?).

These things are lethal to wildlife, whether birds, fish or underwater mammals. They are carried down the stormwater drains, rivers and canals and mostly end up in the ocean. Those that don’t end up in the water are still likely to land in nature somewhere and help to destroy the ecology. We don’t need them to be banned, we just need people to use them responsibly and not release them to the wild.

● Having just read the recent MIASA newsletter I find it quite interesting that:
1) that boat builders will now be required to pass all blackwater through a tank first.
2) Of special irritation to me is the fact that they have all these initiatives and yet have never examined why they have no customers – or at least who they will produce and sell all these boats to. Not to mention where these tradesmen are going to work? From my perspective the lack of Bank finance is the single largest contributor to the degradation of yachting as a past time.

● Many a yachtie, especially those from yesteryear, will remember that hard work and dedication Hilliary Ralph put into sailing as an administrator. Here’s her reply to The Most Exclusive – and Eccentric – Yacht Club in the World:

Maybe you should start your own “Shingles South Africa” club. I remember a few incidents that would qualify.

Like the day some daring sailors took off from the old wooden “International” jetty in Durban, intending to sail around the world – much admired by the throng of people gathered to see them off. Tears and cheers, as they cast off into the Silburn Channel, changed to moans and groans as the yacht hit a sandbank, and stopped dead! I wasn’t very popular because I laughed!

I can’t remember who they were, or what boat it was, but it was certainly before that jetty was demolished, and in those days local yachties who decided to brave the oceans were hailed (rightly) as heroes.

Surely your older readers have a host of stories they could give you before they shuffle off this mortal coil?

ED. So there’s a challenge to all readers, let’s have the stories and see who we can enroll into that August club. Contributions and nominations to: editor@sailing.co.za

● My old mate at the Due North Rum Club in Port Elizabeth has sent this reminder on flag etiquette:
When you display an SA flag, or any other national flag, sideways or vertically, it MUST ALWAYS be tilted anti-clockwise.

ED. How many of you knew that? I certainly did not.

“Talking Sailing” is written by Richard Crockett, the Publisher & Editor of SAILING Magazine, South Africa’s monthly sailing mag.

Readers are encourage share “Talking Sailing” with their friends, crew and fellow yachties. Simply send an e-mail to sailing@iafrica.com with the words ‘SUBSCRIBE TO TALKING SAILING’ in the subject line – and the e-mail address in the message section. Readers are welcome to share this with friends and colleagues. The more people “Talking Sailing” the better our sport will become and grow.