On the weekend of 19th-20th March, Carrick Coastal Rowing Club organized and hosted a well attended and extremely informative SCRA Coxing Course for coastal rowing clubs in Ayrshire. On the Saturday morning, 15 members from Arran, Carrick, Cumbrae, Girvan, Firth of Clyde, Prestwick and Troon met at Dolphin House in the stunning grounds of Culzean Castle on the Ayrshire coast.
The two very experienced instructors, Ali Grant (Portobello) and Barbara Elliot (Anstruther), shared their knowledge in an interesting, lively and interactive way with mostly inexperienced coxes. Saturday was given over to theory and, although it lasted from 11am to 5pm, everyone thoroughly enjoyed the relaxed and playful style of learning and the day flew by. One could really see what a difference it makes when Powerpoint is banished and how effective interactive learning can be (thanks Ali for all the creative and imaginative props).
It was not only cox’s tasks and responsibilities which were covered, but also a wide range of topics which are of importance to the whole crew, such as boat and crew safety, common terminology, launching environments and conditions, racing rules, the basics of VHF radio usage and much more. The delightful sight of Babs demonstrating with a model skiff and five Barbie dolls brought a smile to many faces and won’t be forgotten in a hurry.
On the Sunday, everybody was really eager to go out and practice what they had learnt the day before. The weather god smiled on the participants, who had ideal conditions for their outing in Maidens harbour: sunshine and a sea as flat as a millpond. Three Skiffs from Carrick, Troon and Irvine we available, so Ali, Barbara and Fergus Forsyth (Carrick) went on board as passengers and supervised the other crew members, who all coxed and rowed and had loads of fun building up their confidence in steering and guiding the crew. All of the would-be coxes soon noticed if their commands were clear and precise – or not!
All of the participants would like to extend a very big thank you to Ali, Babs and to Fergus, Henry and the team at Dolphin House for an excellently run and led course in an easy-going, friendly and enjoyable atmosphere. If you have the chance, don’t miss the next one!
Photos and report: Friederike and Stuart (Arran CRC)
Rowers from Troon, St Andrews, Newburgh, Pittenweem, Broughty Ferry and Queensferry joined hosts Wormit on a row down the tidal River Tay from Perth to Wormit. The crews stopped off in Newburgh for crew changes and Balmerino for coffee and cake. Broughty Ferry even rowed home from the finish. A great way to spend Easter Sunday.
Following the successful staging of the inaugural Shieldaig Regatta, entries are open for this years regatta to take place on Saturday 6th August.
The regatta is staged over 5 around the island races over a distance of just under 2km. Races comprise Men and Women’s Decades, Mixed Gender Open and Men and Women’s Open- with the overall regatta Champions decided by a cumulative points total after the 5 races.
The regatta is the centrepiece of the villages fete weekend, with Live music, beer tent, seafood, BBQs and various other events happening throughout the day and culminating in an open air street ceilidh on the seafront.
This years event is restricted to 10 boats and entries should be made to firstname.lastname@example.org
All being well the village will have their own skiff for the event. Their skiff build is well underway with the aim of being on the start line by the 6th August. Good luck with that.
Saturday 19th March saw the launch of Deveron Coastal Rowing club, which was formed in October 2015 with the aim of working alongside Banff Academy to encourage the pupils and members of the wider community to take up rowing. The club’s skiff, Banac, was built by senior pupils within the academy with the help of Vice Chairman, Pete Banks.
With a couple of members having attended the SCRA’s recent regatta organiser’s course, Deveron CRC hosted their first regatta at Banff harbour with great enthusiasm.
Conditions were not ideal…
Although dry, the wind was from the north, making the sea a bit exciting, but all 6 parties agreed to go ahead. The club would like to give a big thanks to Portsoy CRC, Avoch Community rowing club, St Andrews CRC, Findochty WSC and Burghead CRC who all attended, braved the conditions and provided much support and help.
The day consisted of 4 races, Mens open, Womens open, Mixed and mixed club, with a mixture of experienced and new junior rowers taking part. The atmosphere and enthusiasm from the clubs spurred the Deveron pupils on and the day was thoroughly enjoyed by all. Between the races there was soup and home bakes within the Banff Sailing Club house, which went down a treat on a chilly day. Afterwards around 10 people had their first taster row in a skiff.
The course was approximately 1km, with the boats rowing leisurely across the bay to MacDuff harbour to the start. Lining up was challenging, but chief umpire Roisin kept everyone in order – an admirable performance for her first attempt at the role! The racing was at times exciting, with second place in the women’s open being too close to call
The results from the day are as follows with medals for the first and second places.
|Mens open||Womens open||Mixed||Mixed club
|Portsoy and St Andrew
The club would like to say a big thank you for everyone’s support and attendance and can’t wait to attend and support other clubs regattas. Special thanks go to the pupils who attended and participated.
Photos: Allan Robertson Photography
Keen rower Sue Llewellyn and amateur boatbuilder Steve Brown have teamed up to start a skiff build at Lydney. Yesterday saw a good number of people turn out in a biting north-easterly wind reminiscent of Fife to watch the Bristol boat go through its paces on the Severn Estuary.
About thirty people added their names to the interest sheets, so the next stage will be a meeting at Lydney Yacht Club on Thursday 14th April at 7 for 7.30pm to listen to Alec Jordan present the story of the St Ayles, and plan how to move forward.
All will be welcome; people from other nearby communities are also welcome to attend.
See also the Lydney Facebook page
Congratulations to the community boat builders of the Staran Community Interest Company. Good luck to the new rowers of Blue Moon Rowing Club.
We are geting a rush of new skiffs in time for the clocks going forward. Next weekend sees the launch of Kings Lynn’s second skiff, as well as Amble’s Second Skiff.
Thirty Two regatta organisers met up at Loch Insh to discuss how to run a fair, enjoyable and safe regatta. We heard eexcellent talks by Andrew Rendle (delivered by Clayton Hardisty) on pre-event communication, and in particular the benefits of a comprehensive and clear notice of race (see notes here). Topher Dawson gave us a masterclass on setting up a course and laying marks (see notes here). We heard from Robbie Wightman all about the worst regatta he had ever been to. You can read the story of Auchenshuggle Regatta 2014 for yourself. The regatta organisers would welcome your feedback on Auchenshuggle Regatta. If you fill out the Auchenshuggle feedback form and include your email, you will receive a free witty riposte in return.
A recurring theme was the need for good communication, right from the start of the regatta planning process, through the days racing, and even afterwards with the benefits of encouraging feedback from those who attend.
Having listened to all that the attendees were split into six groups, each group taking one type of race and presenting to the rest of the meeting the advantages and disadvantages of each race type, the type of water and group of skiffies it may be suitable for, and the special considerations which would have to be made. The six race types were 1. Time Trial 2. “Drag Race” (straight line, multi boat, no turn) 3. Multi-Lane out and back (skiffieworlds type course) 4. Round the Island 5. Single Buoy Turn and 6. Pursuit Circuit Races . After considering the different race courses, the six groups became three, and each was tasked with organising a one hour regatta the next day. The race types chosen were time trial, Pursuit and single buoy turn. Innovation was required to make use of the resources we had. As we only had one skiff available (thank your Broughty Ferry for bringing theirs) the time trial was an excellent choice of event type, and sixteen rowers got to take part in that event. In order to practice organising the other regatta types we were able to subsitute Canadian canoes (thanks to our hosts Loch Insh Watersports Centre) for skiffs which in some ways was actually and advantage as we were able to run the regattas in a smaller space.
The Water Sports centre was also able to supply us with our umpire pedalo…… we think this may be a first in Scottish Coastal Rowing. Much fun was had by all hopefully to some educational benefit. The SCRA subsidise the course because all skiffies will benefit from clubs having the confidence to put on events, and the ability to analyse and improve them.
Thanks to Sophia Sheppard for the pictures.
This is a very special year for Eskmuthe as the town celebrates the Riding of the Marches – something that only happens every 21 years. And what’s even better is that, for the first time ever, they are going to do a Rowing of the Marches and would like all of you to help.
The Riding of the Marches marks the town’s land boundaries and the rowing event will mark the sea boundaries. This will involve an 8km row with some surprises thrown in. It will also be an evening event with a bonfire and party on the beach to add to the occasion. As everyone enjoyed the flotilla of boats when the Cockenzie Towers came down, the hosts thought they would include other boats in the big row. They will also have smaller sprint races and things to do on the beach while the boats are away.
The event will take place from 5pm on Saturday 11 June and for anyone wanting to make a night of it they can offer places to leave the boats. They can also offer live music, beach games and lots of fun.
It would be great to add a new event to our Riding of the Marches tradition, which is believed to date back to the fifth century. So please go along, have a great time and make a little bit of history happen.
PS As the RoM involves an armour-clad Town Champion and six other Principals dressed as a mixture of Witch Finder Generals and Elizabethans, Eskmuthe’s treasurer George wants to make dressing up optional. The only theme is fun!