Second Arran Coastal Rowing Regatta, 16th – 17th June 2018

Saturday began early in the morning with a hive of activity in the pouring rain. As the last crews arrived on the first ferry, Lamlash Yacht Club was humming – gazebos going up, rowers welcomed with hot drinks, the course laid and the hard standing quickly filled up with a long row of skiffs: South Queensferry, St Ayles and Rowporty from the East Coast, the Clyde was represented by Stranraer (at their first ever regatta), Troon, FOCCR, Prestwick, Royal West, Renegade teaming up with Cumbrae and Arran’s northerly neighbour Islay. All races were over 1.5km with two port turns over two timed heats.

Saturday Races:   Despite the downpour and Holy Isle enveloped in mist, everyone was in good spirits and chatted with old friends and new, all the time crossing their fingers that the forecast for brighter weather later in the day would be proved right. By the time the first race started at 11 o’clock the rain had eased up and the Open Men got underway. After some tough racing, Arran won the gold by 3 seconds from Royal West, who took the silver, and Troon the bronze.

Next up was the Open Women. The Arran lasses kept tight on St Ayles’s heels but couldn’t manage to overtake the strong Anstruther crew and secured an impressive second place with Islay coming in third.

This was followed by the Mixed Novice race, which was won by Islay, who came in seventeen seconds ahead of South Queensferry, with Prestwick just a few seconds behind them.

The Open Mixed was the last race of the morning session before the officials on the water had a chance to warm up and get some lunch. By now the sun was ever more present and all the participants were drying off and enjoying the warmth. In a tightly contested fight in the second heat with a determined Royal West crew, Arran maintained their initial lead and managed to pull away on the home straight to a hard fought first place. FOCCR in the first heat got a good time and came second, pipping Royal West into third place by only five seconds.

 A magnificent team of volunteers put on a fantastic spread for lunch, which was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone but soon it was time to get back to the oars, made easier by the blue sky and sunshine.

Starting the afternoon session was the Mixed 240+. As with the other races holding a line on the start was challenging due to a strong southerly wind. St Ayles were on top form and were quick to challenge Arran on the starboard side after the start. But the hosts managed to get ahead by the important first turn and were first over the finish line in their heat to cheers from the watching crowd. Troon, however, had an even better time in the first heat, snatching away the gold medal by one second, with St Ayles taking the bronze.

The following race was the Mixed Decades. Arran’s four got a substantial lead in their heat and came away with an impressive win in the fastest time of the day, with FOCCR second and Islay third.

The penultimate race of the day was the Mens 220+. Very strong Troon and Largs crews battled it out for first place, Troon eventually winning by a second, while Arran and Greenock fought valiantly on the home straight for third, the latter just managing to pull away and clinch the bronze, also by a second.

And last but not least was the Womens 220+ which was – not surprisingly – won by St Ayles with Islay and Rowporty winning their well deserved silver and bronze medals respectively with only 2 seconds in it.

Time to freshen up and gather for the prizegiving. Bathed in sunshine and with a backdrop of Holy Isle and the Arran skiffs sitting proudly on their double trailer, the table loaded with medals looked resplendent: gold, silver (handmade soap on the rope) and bronze (hand turned laburnum mini fenders). The winning crews also received some liquid gold with their medals – miniatures of Arran whisky, very kindly supplied by the distillery. And each participating club took home a handsome looking handmade rope fender.

The chair of Arran CRC, Cecilia Paul, announced the winning teams and to much joy and applause the well earned fruits of hard labour were presented to the smiling rowers. To round off the ceremony, the magnificent Arran Trophy, won last year by Troon CRC, was presented to the new winner by Troon’s Chairman Harry Risk. Everyone waited with baited breath for the announcement of the winning club, which when it came was met with a roar of applause: Arran CRC were the overall winners of the regatta and proudly accepted the trophy.

Now it was time for fun – the bar opened and the evening’s entertainment began with a much praised BBQ. Once everyone had had their fill, the winners of the raffle were announced and the party started, the Yacht Club resounding to a great selection of music from DJ Steve while dancing, singing, chatting and drinking went on until late at night.

“Hamilton Rock Challenge”:  Sunday morning saw the rowers congregating again for a hard fought 6km race around Hamilton Rock and after the presentation of the medals and a fine, new trophy to the strong FOCCR crew, the clubs departed, tired but in good spirits.

A big thank you from Arran The Arran CRC committee would like to send their heartfelt thanks to all the wonderful and friendly rowers who came from far and wide to take part and to the whole club and their families and friends for working tirelessly to make this event thoroughly enjoyable for all.

Clickity click here for full results.

Photos courtesy of Dave Ingham – Arran Photography –


arran coastal rowers

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Black Isle Regatta 2018: The Results

The village of Cromarty, at the mouth of the Cromarty Firth was the venue for this year’s Black Isle Regatta.  The regatta is organised jointly by Avoch CRC (the Skiffties) and Cromarty CRC, with significant contribution from the wider local community.  Those who arrived on the Friday were treated to a spectacular acrobatic display by a small pod of dolphins 100m off shore from the beachside campsite.  The welcome from the dolphins was really reflected in the welcome extended over the whole weekend by the skiffies and townsfolk of Cromarty.

Youth Race Underway with resting rigs in the background. Photo: JJ Wallace.

There was an impressive turn out of Skiffs and Clubs.  North Berwick and Eastern had travelled up from the South East and joined a very strong northern contingent.  Host clubs Cromarty and Avoch were joined by fellow black islers Soutars Skiffies.  From the North we had Golspie, Bunilidh and Orkney, with Coigach, Lochcarron and Ullapool coming over from the North West.  The south shore of the Moray Firth supplied crews from Findhorn, Portsoy, Burghead, and Deveron.    In addition to the club teams a spare skiff was supplied for a “Rest of the World” team, made up of those who were looking for a row, including for instance a few Broughty Ferry rowers who had washed up on the shore.

Click Here for Full Results

The regatta was a feature of the Northern Circuit of the SCRA Youth Series.  A full programme of six youth races was offered, with boys, girls and mixed categories in both under 19 and under 17 age groups.  The youth races were on an out and back course parallel to the shore.  Up to eight crews raced in each of the categories, a very pleasing sight for those who promote the youth series.

The weather was moist on the Saturday, but cleared nicely for the open air midsummer dance entertainment on the Saturday night, and was very pleasant on the Sunday.

The course was triangular for the adult races, with a longer leg to the first bouy and an overall course length of 2250m.  Strong tides run out the the Soutars, and tidal conditions varied considerably between races, keeping coxes guessing with regard to the best line.  Getting to the first bouy in a position to make a clear turn was key, although especially midfleet there was overtaking between the two turns and on the last leg.  Good coxing was rewarded (as long as the rowers did their bit!) and there were disqualifications for some boats at the turn where their coxes had not managed to comply fully with the turning rule in the SCRA rules of racing.  Just as a reminder while you are here, we have published useful guidance on the rule in the past.


Turning the First Buoy was key. Photo JJ Wallace

photo: JJ Wallace

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Inchcolm Trip June 2018

Rowing for fun.

Kinghorn Coastal Rowing Club


Sport is so often just about winners and losers. But it doesn’t have to be competition for people to get huge satisfaction and enjoyment out of taking part.

That’s what over one hundred rowers and helpers from around Fife, the Forth and the Tay, found as they spent Sunday rowing their St Ayles Skiffs from Kinghorn to Inchcolm Island and back.

Kinghorn Coastal Rowing Club hosted the event for which there were no prizes, no crossing the line first, no disappointment at following the fleet, just the delight of rowing in company with ‘skiffies’ from around Fife and beyond.

Said Phil Godding, Chair of Kinghorn’s Club, “Skiff racing can be very exciting and attract huge interest. But rowers in this event told me it was good for once not to have the tension and edge of a competition. Instead it was just great to relax and enjoy being out on the water off the beautiful Fife coast in company with other rowers and clubs.”

Twelve boats took to the water in Kinghorn Bay from nine clubs from Fisherrow, Portobello, Newhaven, South Queensferry, Kinghorn, Pittenweem, Anstruther, St Andrews and Wormit.

Kinghorn and Burntisland Sailing Clubs joined in and provided support boats, whilst local business Calypso Marine ferried rowers out to Inchcolm from Aberdour and back so as many people as possible could have their turn in rowing these community built boats.

Inchcolm trip 2018 PR


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Comply with the St Ayles Skiff Measurement Rules

Carbon Oars with Spoon Blades…… not permitted in racing. (Photo credit, 2010, Peter Nisbet, SCRA Flickr)

It is always the right time  to remind all users and builders of St Ayles skiffs of the importance of complying with the St Ayles Skiff measurement Rules.  The rules apply in any event where you are racing with other St Ayles skiffs from other clubs or groups.  As part of our community, other skiff rowers will expect you to at least try to comply with the rules to achieve a fair comparison between crews.  This applies worldwide and in every event where you might meet skiffs from other clubs, including for the avoidance of doubt multi class events such as the Great River Race, Castle to Crane and Ocean to City.

As the international class association, we are conscious that the rules of some events may not specify anything with regard to complying with measurement rules, and that therefore that event may not apply a sanction, other than the disappointment of other members of our world wide St Ayles skiff community.  Therefore the Scottish Coastal Rowing Association will apply a sanction where groups have not made an attempt to comply with the measurement rules.  As the transgressor is effectively saying that they do not require to comply with the spirit and rules of our community, they will not be allowed to take part in events organised for or by our community.  Specifically, entries will not be accepted from any such group for Skiffieworlds or for Castle to Crane,  and we would encourage all St Ayles skiff event organisers to adopt a similar stance.

[Note:  Any reasonable adaptation to allow a rower with disabilities to compete equally is excused from the measurement rules, while  that rower is competing.   Any such adaptation will be individual to the individual rower.  If in doubt about this exception, and how it should apply to you or one of your members, please e mail the secretary of SCRA. ]

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Broughty Ferry Regatta 2nd June 2018

SCRA Report – Broughty Ferry Boating Regatta 2018


Broughty Ferry Boating Regatta

2 June 2018

After the early morning haar disappeared the sun came out for a great day of competitive rowing. Visiting clubs were Collieston, Easter, Newburgh, North Berwick, Boatie Blest, South Queensferry, Wormit and two home boats Broughty Ferry Boating in Arthur Nicoll and Tay Sail in Brochty.

This was a 2.5K course with approximately 130 rowers competing. A busy day on Grassy Beach with a great buzz and lots of friendly banter.

There were twelve races in total including, everyone’s favourite, Andy’s Race with results as follows:

60+ Mixed 1st Broughty Ferry 2nd Wormit 3rd Queensferry

50+ Mixed 1st Boatie Blest 2nd North Berwick 3rd Eastern

40+ Women 1st North Berwick 2nd Broughty Ferry 3rd Eastern

50+ Men 1st Boatie Blest 2nd Collieston 3rd North Berwick

50+ Women 1st North Berwick 2nd Boatie Blest 3rd Wormit

60+ Men 1st Broughty Ferry 2nd Wormit 3rd Queensferry

Mixed Open 1st North Berwick 2nd Broughty Ferry 3rd Tay Sail

Mixed 40+ 1st North Berwick 2nd Eastern 3rd Boatie Blest

60+ Women 1st Broughty Ferry 2nd Eastern 3rd Wormit

Open Women 1st Broughty Ferry 2nd North Berwick 3rd Wormit

Open Men 1st North Berwick 2nd Eastern 3rd Broughty Ferry

Andy’s Race 1st Broughty Ferry 2nd Newburgh 3rd Boatie Blest

(There were no points from Andy’s Race towards overall points)

Overall Winners were North Berwick with Broughty Ferry second and Boatie Blest third.

Well done to all the clubs who participated and not forgetting all their supporters. All in all an excellent day!!

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Troon Regatta 2nd June 2018

Troon regatta was held on South Beach on the 2nd June 2018.Arran,Royal West,Prestwick,FOCCRS,Carrick and the two Troon skiffs took part.Heavy fog delayed the start and also the Arran team were delayed due to their ferry from Arran running late.Once the fog cleared racing got underway and an enjoyable day was had by all.

The overall result was a tie between Troon and Arran and after a countback on winning 1st positions in the days races Troon narrowly took 1st place.



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Anster Regatta 2018

Friday 11th May, for those of you who have long memories, was still
Winter: cold, blowy, uncouth and unconducive to enjoying any kind of
great outdoors-ish activity, including rowing.
Saturday 12th dawned and the sun was cracking the flags. All day from
dawn to dusk. The sun shines upon the righteous!


It began with Sheila doing her Carmina Banana act on the road
outside the fabulous pop-up club tearoom in the Sun Tavern. Luckily
there was no traffic at the time…

Karen Traffic, meanwhile, had organised her car park the evening before in the bitter
cold aforementioned, and heaven help anyone who tried to slip past the
sandbagged barriers. No shorter shrift has been known to man/womankind.
This meant that all visiting rowers/towers/ skiffs could easily access the beach in a
day-tripper fish&chippy seaside town where the parking ain’t easy.

After Coxes’ Briefing, where, from the East Pier it looked like 90% of the teams were both
coxing and rowing, the racing got underway…
so efficiently that proceedings had ended and gazebos been struck well within
the programmed time. Smooth running or what!

Farthest flung team was Helmsdale who, according to Karen Traffic’s very on-trend sign,

travelled 217 miles to be with us with Crail coming the least distance at 4 miles.
There was a small drama when Arran, during the Women’s Open, appropriated one of the
course buoys (minus sinker) but the Mighty Flynn was on hand to replace it with a spare!
“Just move it out a bit” someone said.

Apart from Collieston winning the Mixed Novice Race and Broughty the
Men’s Open and the Women’s 60+ it was a clean sweep for Port Seton
& Cockenzie, who looked like thorougbreds throughout.

The prize-giving took place later at Legends, with medals being handed
out by the Fisher Lad and a major sponsor of Anstruther St Ayles,
Elizabeth Gordon from the Community Kist.
He may only be young, but the Fisher Lad did his bit with aplomb.
There was the usual bit of a perty afterwards…

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A Windy Day out in Queensferry – The Results

On May 26th last Queensferry Rowing Club held their Regatta in blustery conditions. We had Clubs from as far West as Arran and Troon and as far North as Portsoy along with crews from the Firths of Forth and Tay. It was a sunny day but there was an Easterly wind blowing which brought a chill to the air.  This was the first Regatta since the completion of the new Queensferry Crossing and a grand backdrop it was.


The race course was from underneath the Road Bridge down to a finger buoy off the harbour wall, along to the harbour wall and then head for home. The fastest race of the day was the Men’s Open with Broughty Ferry coming home in a remarkable time of 7 minutes 34 seconds and that with having issues with their oars on the turn. North Berwick were second in 7 minutes 40 seconds and third were Arran in 8 minutes and nine seconds.


The race course was from underneath the Road Bridge down to a finger buoy off the harbour wall, along to the harbour wall and then head for home. The fastest race of the day was the Men’s Open with Broughty Ferry coming home in a remarkable time of 7 minutes 34 seconds and that with having issues with their oars on the turn. North Berwick were second in 7 minutes 40 seconds and third were Arran in 8 minutes and nine seconds.


We had our usual Andy’s Race in memory of Andy Jarvis, a Rower well known to most clubs throughout Scotland who would Row for whoever would have him.  This race was won by Eskmuthe’s boat with Queensferry coming second and Broughty Ferry coming third.


The day was added to with some wonderful catering and a tombola with a cornucopia of prizes .  All photos from the Queensferry Rowing Club Flikr.…  plenty more great shots to be seen there.


Full Results on This Link


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Row Lochboisdale Results 2018

The first major rowing regatta in the Western Isles was really good. We had skiffs from N Uist, Berneray, Bragar, Barra, Siabost, Lochinver, Ullapool and Brora. Friday night had NE winds of 30 mph which kept the boats off the water and made for some memorable camping. Saturday was much more reasonable and gorgeously sunny. The races started outside the marina breakwater, round a 1.7km triangle and finished within the marina which was exciting for spectators. Lochinver won their first trophies and close racing was had all through the fleet but it was Golspie’s large and fit team of 28 people which prevailed in the end. Ullapool came second and Siabost came third. The hospitality was amazing and really well organised. The marina was a great place for crews to change over and for spectators to enjoy the racing, and the showers are lovely! Well done to Cheryl and Robert Taylor for bringing together the whole community to a relaxed, fun event in a stunning location.



Friday 25th

No rowing due to very high winds into the harbour mouth

Saturday 26th

Race 1 45+ Women 1st Ullapool 2nd Lochinver 3rd Golspie

Race 2 45+ Men 1st An Eathar 2nd Ullapool 3rd Golspie

Race 3 Open Mixed 1st An Eathar 2nd Golspie 3rd Bragar

Race 4 60 + Mixed 1st Ullapool 2nd Golspie 3rd Uist

Race 5 45 + Mixed 1st Golspie 2nd An Eathar 3rd Lochinver

Race 6 60 + Men 1st Ullapool 2nd Golspie 3rd Berneray

Race 7 60 + Women 1st Golspie 2nd Ullapool 3rd Berneray

Race 8 Open Men 1st Golspie 2nd An Eathar 3rd Lochinver

Race 9 Open Women 1st Bragar 2nd Golspie 3rd Lochinver

Total Points:

1st Golspie 28 / 2nd Ullapool 18 / 3rd An Eathar 14 / 4th Bragar 11 /

5th Lochinver 10 / 6th Berneray 8 / 7th Uist 7 / 8th Barra 1

And a great day was had by all!

Robert & Cheryl Taylor

Chair UIst Coastal Rowing ClubRow Lochboisdale Results

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St Ayles in South Africa

Over the past few weeks we have been having a conversation with the Vice Commodore Paul Tomes of Hout Bay Yacht Club, just south of Cape Town.

The result of this was a meeting last night which was attended by approximately 60 people – 40 of whom were from outside the Yacht Club.

Paul’s report on the meeting…

Over 50 people attended our recent presentation to introduce the concept of adding coastal rowing to the waterborne activities at HBYC. The feedback was hugely positive … Hout Bay want to start rowing!…

Alec Jordan has also put us in touch with Robbie Wightman from the Scottish Coastal Rowing Association // and Patrick Groot, from the St Ayles Skiff Community Rowing Association of Australia // , both of whom have been immensely helpful as to the best way to set up our own coastal skiff rowing association in South Africa. Plus we have an invitation to enter a South African team in the 2019 St Ayles ‘Skiffie’ World Championships!… who’s game?

…can be found here

Coincidentally there was also interest from near Pietermaritzburg (where there is a very large dam) at the same time as Paul got in touch, and I have also spoken to another customer from a while back near East London who is interested.

So, another continent to be converted, and there is a high possibility of yet another after that! More news on that when things firm up.

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