1st Dutch International St Ayles Skiff Regatta: The Results

WSV Woudrichem hosted the first Dutch International St Ayles skiff regatta on 27 May 2017.   Weather conditions were challenging, but not in the usual way, with visiting crews seeking shade between races, as temperatures soared into the 30s.  There was a breeze blowing which was very welcome, bringing some relief for crews on the water.  The course was eight lanes wide in the River Maas.  Crews raced from a start/ finish line, up to accurately placed turning buoys 1km upstream. All turns were to starboard, with the wind (until the last race) being a head wind on the way to the turn and a tail wind on the return leg.  Unlike the usual situation, the tailwind was not universally welcomed, as it meant a considerable increase in apparent temperature as crews started the second half of the race.

The (very generous and welcoming) hosts were joined by overseas skiffs from Ullapool, North Berwick, Anstruther, Largs (Firth of Clyde), Queensferry, Port Seton, Carrick and Killyleagh.  It was great to see local competition for Woudrichem coming from WSV Heusden in their bright orange skiff, and WV de Merwede, who launched officially named their skiff the day before the regatta (see separate post).  As has become normal, the attending clubs welcomed some others into their ranks, and we know that rowers from Langstone Cutters Gig Club (England), Broughty Ferry (Scotland) , Strangford (Northern Ireland) and Lake Champlain (USA) were involved in the racing.

The dutch crews set out their stall early, with Woudrichem storming to victory in the first race of the day, Men’s 50+, and also taking thebronze, with North Berwick sandwiched between them.  Any doubts that the Dutch crews would struggle against experienced overseas opposition were quickly put aside.  However when the Women got onto the water normal service was resumed to some extent with St Ayles Anstruther storming home in a victory ahead of Port Seton’s Boatie Blest, and North Berwick…  three of the six clubs who attended the first ever St Ayles skiff regatta in 2010.  The fourth of those six clubs, Ullapool, placed second in the next race, the men’s 60+, in a race dominated by a strong North Berwick Crew.  Carrick had their best result of the day (with a very small team) coming fourth in this event behind the hosts in third.

St Ayles Anstruther won again in the Womens 60+, with Queensferry taking the silver.  Ullapool lifted the bronze in this event ahead of Killyleagh from Strangford Lough.

“Martin’s Dreamteam” from Woudrichem posted the fastest time of the day in winning the Mens’ 40 + event in 11 minutes 40.69.  Second fastest time of the day was set by North Berwick in winning the Men’s open in 11:43.78.  These were the only teams to go under 12 minutes.

In the youth events Anstruther, and Woudrichem took the medals, along with a North Berwick crew who had USA’s Lake Champlain and Largs’ Firth of Clyde rowers on board.

Biggest cheers of the day were for Queensferry winning the the Mixed Open A, and for the hosts in the very last race of the day, Open Mixed B, where they battled all the way back from the turn to beat a stony North Berwick crew.   Half the crews in that raced dived into the water at the end in celebration and in search of relief from the heat.

The Saturday regatta was preceded by short sprints on the Thursday night (held on the ice skating pond), and a mystery tour by skiff on the Friday morning.  On Friday afternoon there was a trip accross the busiest waterway in Europe, to welcome the newest skiff on to the water at Gorinchem.

The welcome extended to visiting clubs really was astonishing, with so may volunteers putting in so much effort.  A very big thank you on behalf of all visitors is extended to the WSV Woudrichem, their members and their neighbours.  It is hard to imagine how they could have done anything more, and we love having them as part of our community.


The Full sets for results, listed both by overall time and by category, can be found through the WSV Woudrichem website.  Local report found here  .

See a great set of photos by Bart Stoutjesdijk some of which are used in this post.

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Positive Tests for Vitamin D at First Dutch International St Ayles Skiff Regatta

It was “taps aff” at Woudrichem, as temperatures soared into the 30s (yes, centigrade) in the shade.  Not conditions that the visitors from Scotland and Northern Ireland are used to.  Full report to follow…….  please send any comments/ results to convenor@scottishcoastalrowing.org .  Please upload photos to the SCR Flickr Group and the SCR Facebook Group.

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Registration Documents Being Issued to All Skiffs

The Scottish Fisheries Museum, who commissioned the design of the St Ayles Skiff from Ian Oughtred at the suggestion of Alec Jordan of Jordan Boats and started the “Scottish Coastal Rowing Project” to encourage local communities to become involved in boat building and coastal rowing, with his considerable assistance are kindly providing registration stickers for every St Ayles skiff that has been completed. The stickers have now arrived and are ready to be distributed to all Clubs, internationally. All clubs can find their registered number on the SCRA craft register.  This is the number which should be displayed in the bow of the boat if so required by a regatta organiser.  Many skiffs have this registration number permanantly marked on their bow.  (Note that it will be different from the kit number, issued by the kit manufacturer when the kit is purchased).

UK skiffs are all numbered together consecutively from completion.  There are separate sub-registers for Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, USA and Canada.  The Australian register is now kept up to date by the St Ayles Skiff Community Rowing Association of Australia.

Excitingly we are about to see the launch of the 200th skiff.  SCRA will issue each skiff with it’s registered craft number  which should be attached to the inside of the skiff on the starboard side of bow.  The photo above shows Captain Babs Elliott and Vice-Captain Bruce Dryburgh from St Ayles RC in Anstruther positioning the number 00 to the prototype skiff, Chris o’Kanaird.

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Coigach Regatta 2017 Report

Coigach kindly hosted visitors from Collieston, Lochinver, LBSC, Ullapool, Eastern, Helmsdale, Golspie, Cromarty, Avoch, N Berwick and Burghead for their regatta on the weekend.  As ever other clubs managed to sneak in here and there.  New club Lossiemouth snuck in some members rowing for Burghead Coastal Rowing Club and  got a very credible second place in the under 19’s race and their adult novices rowed in a crew coming in bronze medal p  osition.

The slightly damp conditions drowned the worst of the midges, and the skiffies kept on racing throughout.  The sandwiches, cakes, BBQ salmon and venison burgers were sold out by the end of the day, raising valuable sums for the  local  primary school……  it really is all a great community effort.

The beautiful Golspie boat won Best Turned Out Skiff, so very well done there to another relatively new club.  A big welcome to for Lochinver, joining in the racing scene without having to travel to far.

Coigach Regatta 2017 racing results:
Women 50+
1 North Berwick 6-30.3 12
2 Eastern 6-41.0 11
3 Loch Broom Sailing Club 6-52.7 10
4 Burghead 6-57.9 9
5 Collieston 6-59.3 8
6 Golspie 6-59.9 7
7 Cromarty 7-12.3 6
8 Avoch 7-15.3 5
9 Ullapool 7-19.5 4
10 Helmsdale 7-20.3 3
Men 50+
1 Ullapool 5-53.9 12
2 North Berwick 5-57.8 11
3 Coigach 6-00.4 10
4 Golspie 6-10.2 9
5 Helmsdale 6-10.5 8
6 Loch Broom Sailing Club 6-23.2 7
7 Collieston 6-33.5 6
8 Burghead 7-23.5 5
1 North Berwick 6-14.6 12
2 Ullapool 6-16.9 11
3 Helmsdale 6-17.4 10
4 Eastern 6-19.4 9
5 Coigach 6-22.1 8
6 Golspie 6-28.1 7
7 Collieston 6-29.0 6
8 Avoch 6-40.0 5
9 Burghead 6-52.1 4
10 Cromarty 7-10.1 3
Men 60+
1 Coigach 6-36.9 12
2 Ullapool 6-41.8 11
3 Avoch 6-57.2 10
4 Golspie 7-03.2 9
Men U19
1 Ullapool 6-23.2 12
2 Burghead 7-01.0 11
3 Helmsdale 7-11.1 10
4 Eastern 7-15.1 9
5 Avoch 8-11.1 8
Women 40+
1 Eastern 6-39.0 12
2 North Berwick 6-52.0 11
3 Coigach 6-55.4 10
4 Avoch 7-03.3 9
5 Ullapool 7-13.1 8
6 Burghead 7-17.4 7
7 Helmsdale 7-20.7 6
8 Collieston 7-32.2 5
9 Golspie 7-34.1 4
10 Cromarty 8-19.9 3
Men 40+
1 Coigach 6-16.4 12
2 Ullapool 6-21.5 11
3 North Berwick 6-26.0 10
4 Avoch 6-26.3 9
5 Helmsdale 6-34.2 8
6 Eastern 6-38.7 7
7 Collieston 6-41.4 6
8 Loch Broom Sailing Club 6-45.0 5
9 Golspie 6-54.1 4
10 Burghead 6-59.8 3
11 Cromarty 7-01.6 2
Mixed 60+
1 Helmsdale 6-42.7 12
2 Ullapool 7-04.7 11
3 Avoch 7-05.2 10
4 Coigach 7-21.4 9
5 Golspie 7-58.3 8
Mixed U19
1 Ullapool 6-38.9 12
2 Avoch 6-57.5 11
3 Eastern 7-44.3 10
Mixed 40+
1 North Berwick 5-58.4 12
2 Coigach 6-14.3 11
3 Eastern 6-21.7 10
4 Ullapool 6-21.0 9
5 Helmsdale 6-29.9 8
6 Avoch 6-35.5 7
7 Collieston 6-40.5 6
8 Burghead 7-07.9 5
9 Golspie 7-09.7 4
10 Cromarty 7-28.9 3
1 Avoch 7-20.0 12
2 Golspie 7-25.0 11
3 Burghead 7-27.4 10
4 Lochinver 7-35.7 9
5 Collieston 7-51.9 8
6 Eastern 8-25.5 7
7 Coigach 8-39.2 6
8 Helmsdale 8-40.5 5
9 Cromarty 9-07.1 4
Mixed Open
1 Eastern 5-55.9 12
2 North Berwick 6-01.4 11
3 Coigach 6-02.0 10
4 Ullapool 6-03.7 9
5 Avoch 6-21-1 8
6 Helmsdale 6-22.9 7
7 Golspie 6-33.3 6
8 Burghead 7-14.7 5
9 Lochinver 8-07.1 4
Mixed 50+
1 Ullapool 6-40.7 12
2 Helmsdale 6-52.9 11
3 North Berwick 7-13.3 10
4 Collieston 7-14.6 9
5 Coigach 7-30.9 8
6 Avoch 7-32.0 7
7 Golspie 7-48.4 6
8 Burghead 7-54.7 5
9 Cromarty 8-01.8 4
Women 60+
1 Avoch 8-24.7 12
2 Ullapool 8-49.6 11
Women U19
1 Avoch 7-29.5 12
2 Ullapool 7-44.6 11
Men Open
1 North Berwick 5-59.1 12
2 Eastern 6.04.5 11
3 Ullapool 6-05.5 10
4 Coigach 6-06.0 9
5 Helmsdale 6-26.9 8
6 Avoch 6-32.0 7
7 Golspie 6-33.0 6
8 Burghead 7-14.3 5
9 Cromarty 7-21.3 4
Women Open
1 Eastern 6-24.9 12
2 North Berwick 6-37.5 11
3 Coigach 6-45.9 10
4 Avoch 6-59.8 9
5 Helmsdale 7-04.2 8
1 Golspie 7-24.5 7
7 Burghead 7-26.6 6
8 Ullapool 7-28.1 5
9 Cromarty 7-28.8 4
Overall Regatta Result (best 7 scores counted for each club)

1= North Berwick 81
1= Ullapool 81
3 Eastern 78
4 Avoch 76
5 Coigach 75
6 Helmsdale 67
7 Golspie 56
8 Burghead 53
9 Collieston 49
10 Cromarty 28
11 Loch Broom Sailing Club 22
12 Lochinver 13



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Coigach Results

Hopefully someone will send us full results, some photos and a report. (convenor@scottishcoastalrowing.org).  In the meantime however we have found this photo of the umpires boat, and the overall results on the Sutors.


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Bella named Belle of the Ball at Hamble River Raid

Langstone Cutters‘  skiff “Bella” was awarded the Concourse de Elegance trophy at the recent Hamble River Raid.  More than 90 vessels were taking part, and the builders and club of this lovely St Ayles Skiff are very proud to have Bella’s beauty and excellent finish recognised.  Doesn’t she look smashing?

“Bella” will shortly be joined at Langstone by a sister ship “Bonnie” (151 on the register) and they will both be travelling to take part in the Voga Longa in Venice this year.

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“Silver Darling” joins the fleet at Chanonry

Last Saturday, 13th May, Chanonry Sailing Club (CSC) Community Rowing skiff section launched its second St Ayles skiff, named ‘Silver Darling’.  Despite a forecast of heavy showers we enjoyed a perfect warm, bright and near calm day. Using the excellent clubhouse facilities, slipway, harbour and dinghy racing course the launch was part of the annual RNLI open day at the club.   For the launch of Silver Darling we were joined by both skiffs of the Avoch Skiffties, who rowed up from Avoch, together with both skiffs from Cromarty. The skirl of the pipes had roused everyone’s attention before words of thanks and the blessing of a dram from a Quaich meant Silver Darling was properly ready to slip off her trailer to her salty new home. The first CSC skiff, ‘Chanonry Maid’ was also on the water to join the raised oar salute.

Once all afloat the 6 boats had a couple of short races with Avoch demonstrating how it should be done with commanding double wins.  All good practice as we prepare for summer regattas.

The day included visits from the Invergordon and Inverness lifeboats and a dinghy sailing race.  RNLI volunteers provided refreshments and the local Sea Scouts got thoroughly involved using their own boats and began to get to grips with rowing on the skiffs.  We welcomed several members of the public to have a go on the skiffs and hopefully we’ll have some new members keen to feel the surge of collective power in a St Ayles skiff.


CSC Community Rowing section FB page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/CSCCommunityRowing/?ref=bookmarks with a number of other photos of the launch.

Roger McMichael

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Come and Try Coastal Rowing in May

We are a community sport, and all member clubs of Scottish Coastal Rowing Association are always delighted to introduce new people to the joys of exercising with friends on the sea.  If you want to experience what it is like, find your nearest skiff rowing club on our St Ayles Skiff club finder.  Contact the club and ask them about getting out on the water.

However there are some extra “Open Days” coming up over the next couple of weekends, where rowing clubs are combinging with other local watersports clubs to offer sessions accross a number of activities.  These are promoted as part of the RYA “Push the Boat Out” initiative.  Anyone going along to these sessions will have the chance to try  activities such as dinghy sailing, yachting, paddle boarding, power boating, as well as rowing.  Look out for local information, but clubs that we are aware of are:

Portobello-  Saturdays 13 and 20 May 

Broughty Ferry – Royal Tay YC-  Saturday May 13th

Granton (Edinburgh)-  Newhaven CRC and Royal Forth YC –  Sunday May 14 (pm)

Banff-  Banff SC/ Whitehills/ Portsoy/ Deveron Sunday May 14

Glencoe-  Glencoe SC and Isle of Seil RC –  Sunday May 14

North Berwick-  East Lothian YC and North Berwick Rowing Club Saturday 19 May

Find the full list of participating RYA Push the Boat Out Venues here:







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Iona Regatta 29 July 2017- Call for entries

Entries are invited from members of the Scottish Coastal Rowing Association for the Iona Regatta on 29 July 2017.  Realistically, to be in time for the races, visiting St Ayles Skiffs will need to get to Iona by the evening of Friday 28th when there will be the possibility of impromptu sprint races and short tours.

Because of the strong tidal streams in the Sound of Iona it won’t be possible to lay out a long
starting line of boats, so the plan is for a series of timed pursuit races around the buoys which
should be exciting. Details of race categories for men, women and  mixed are still to be determined.
On the Saturday evening there will be a bbq with local produce and a ceilidh in the village hall
A social “picnic” row is planned for Sunday 30th for any boats able to stay on. (Possibly round
the island or across to Tinkers Hole / Balfours Bay depending on the weather.)

As accommodation on Iona is usually fully booked months in advance in summer, camping is
likely to be the best option for visiting crews.   For practical reasons, the number of visiting skiffs will need to be limited, so if your club is interested in coming along, please let Iona know asap. TIBA will also do their best to find places in skiffs for any boatless rowers who can make it along. A formal Notice of Race will be issued in due course. In the meantime, if you have any queries or would like to express interest in participating, please contact Alison Johnston:  alison_johnston_iona”at”yahoo.com

The Iona Boat Association Facebook Page.

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Anster Regatta 2017

A beachful of skiffs from St Andrews; Boatie Blest; Newburgh; Eastern; The FOCCRs; Royal West; North Berwick; Portsoy; and Brunillidh (Helmsdale) descended on Anstruther last weekend for the St Ayles Rowing Club’s Regatta on Saturday 6th May. After days and days of North Easterlies blowing large swells into the Firth of Forth, the weather remained consistent and gave visiting rowers a glimpse of coastal rowing conditions we enjoy in the East.

Racing was held outside the Harbour in a straight West to East transect from the Billowness back to Anster Harbour. The first race was the Men’s Open, with Eastern leading the field by 10 seconds, followed by North Berwick, and Helmsdale. The Women’s Open followed however deteriorating conditions led to the race being postponed. Time for Plan B!

A second coxes briefing relayed Plan B; a 2 skiff chase course within the Harbour which involved racing around the outside of a set of buoys. Races were now fast – all recorded less than 3 minutes – and it tested the Coxswain’s skills manoeuvring around the buoys as every marginal gain counted. The fastest time of the day came from Boatie’s Mixed 40+ who got round in 2:03!

Races were now fully in view of the beach, and the support for each skiffs was felt as they raced past the beach. With changes to the racing schedule, the Women’s Open was conducted at lunchtime; the top three places were dominated by Firth of Forth clubs, with Anster 1st, Eastern 2nd, and North Berwick 3rd. Sadly we ran out of time to hold the ‘Andy’ race, but it was clear to see the spirit of Andy was visible in the mixed club crews racing.

Table: Results

Men’s Open Women’s Open Mix 60 Women’s 50 Mix 40
1 Eastern 3.54 1 Anster 2.21 1 N Berwick 2.25 1 Anster 2.32 1 Port Seton 2.03
2 N Berwick 4.04 2 Eastern 2.25 2 FOCCRs 2.27 2 Port Seton 2.36 2 N Berwick 2.11
3 Helmsdale 4.16 3 N Berwick 2.28 3 Anster 2.28 3=Eastern, 2.40  N Berwick 3= Eastern, 2.18
Mix Open Mix 50 Men’s Decades Mix Novice Mix Decades
1 Port Seton 2.09 1 Anster 2.15 1 N Berwick 2.13 1 Port Seton 2.23 1 Port Seton 2.16
2 Eastern 2.15 2 Port Seton 2.19 2 Newburgh 2.14 2 Portsoy 2.34 2 N Berwick 2.23
3 Anster 2.18 3= Eastern, 2.21

St Andrews

3 Helmsdale 2.16 3 Newburgh 2.38 3 Eastern 2.27

After the races clubs then put their effort into winning the “trophy worth tugging for” (unknown, 2017) in the beach Tug O’War. Tough contests were fought, but Helmsdale showed their brawn to win with ease.

At Prize-giving medals were spread out amongst all the clubs, and shortly after the party started!

On behalf of St Ayles Rowing Club, we’d like to thank everyone who supported us on the day and the clubs who came from so far and near. It’s the rowers that make regattas fun and special – we look to more friendly-competitive encounters over the 2017 regatta season!

St Ayles Rowing Club (website)

St Ayles Rowing Club (Facebook)

Allan Robertson’s amazing photos (Flickr)

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