Skiffing the Light Fantastic with Girvan Coastal Rowing Club

Girvan Coastal Rowing Club pushed the boat out this November: participating in the annual Carrick Festival of Light, with 2018 featuring a sparkling lantern parade celebrating 350 years of Girvan’s Burgh status.  Under a starry sky, led by a piper, Girvan rowers carried their ¾ size lantern skiff-with-a-difference through the streets to the Prom to marvel at the grand, extravagant finale: blazing fire sculptures on the beach.

The Girvan skiff-lantern was among hundreds of lanterns reflecting Girvan past and present: sharks and fishes; ice cream cones and a Punch & Judy stall, SS Waverley paddle steamer, a flotilla of small boats; lighthouses, a giant Girvan Suffragette the RNLI lifeboat boats and many beautifully designed lanterns. Carrick Rural Arts Group organises funding and professional artists to lead the annual Festivals of Light.

The skiff lantern, constructed of environmentally-friendly paper and willow, was built over a number of weeks by a team of Girvan rowers, led by coxswain Ian McClymont, who spent 40 + hours crafting this craft using alternative boat-building skills! Girvan Coastal Rowing Club hope to put their paper skiff on display at (or perhaps in George Wyllie paper boat style, IN) Girvan Harbour in springtime 2019.  See more photos of the Lantern Parade at Girvan Coastal Rowing Club Facebook page.  Photo credits Shirley Tennant and David Wilson.

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Cromarty Boat Launch 24 November 2018

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SCRA Thank You Quaichs 2018

At the SCRA AGM  some clubs and individuals who have added something to our sport above and beyond doing their own rowing or running their own clubs were recognised by being awarded quaichs with the SCRA logo embossed.  There are many who deserve such recognition, and we hope they all take pride in the work done by those who did receive their rewards this time round.  Those who  received SCRA Quaichs in 2018 are as follows:

St Andrews Coastal Rowing Club:  For helping to bring adaptive rowing to those who benefit from it, and willingly sharing their knowledge, enthusiasm and experience with other clubs.  A group is being set up to share experiences of other clubs and individuals.  Get in touch with the SCRA secretary if you want to be added to the group.

David Tod, Fisheries Museum and St Ayles Coastal Rowing Club of Anstruther:  David was the Chairman of the Scottish Coastal Rowing Project, and as a trustee of the Fisheries Museum worked with Alec Jordan of Jordan Boats to commission Iain Oughtred for a design for a community built Coastal Rowing Boat.  He retained his involvement through the St Ayles Rowing Club and remains hugely enthusiastic about the skiff and the benefits it brings.  As he says…..  “We have caught a tiger by the tail”.

Elsie Johnston and Shona Muirhead, on behalf of SCRA, present a Quaich to David Tod.

 

Royal West of Scotland Boat Club:  Several clubs help in the organisation of Castle to Crane, providing umpires, safety boats, and general volunteers.  However Royal West deserve to be singled out for a quaich because of the enthusiasm a large group of their members put into the race in the days leading up to race day, on the day and afterwards.  Wherever a volunteer at the start end of things was required, there was a good chance the position would be filled by one of their members.  As well as organising the start and supplying and crewing a safety boat, the club somehow managed to turn out crews to fill two St Ayles skiffs and two coxed four Jolly Boats.

Roisin Steele:  For making coastal rowing in Scotland more inclusive and in particular involving more and more young people.  Roisin’s enthusiasm through Deveron Coastal Rowing Club is central to the SCRA Youth Series.  She is always willing to help other clubs to develop their strategies for involving young people, and ensures that young people are involved in every aspect of her own club.

Loch Tummel Sailing Club:  For three years in a row LTSC have hosted us for our AGM and for the Freshwater sprints.  It really has proven to be the perfect venue for our season closing event.  Their club members cheerfully put in a hard days shift before putting in a hard evening’s shift and shutting down the clubhouse for the winter.  All the rowers appreciate the non-stop stream of hot food, hot drinks and cakes, all provided with a smile.  The Quaich was presented to reflect our gratitude for their hard work and warm welcome.

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SCRA Picnic Class at Loch Tummel

There was a tremendous variety in the boats turning up for the picnic class races this year, including the first boat purposely designed with the rule in mind, the innovative catamaran “Daylight”.  The Picnic Class rules state that boats must be less than 5 meters long, and must have a sheer that is concave…..  that is like a smile.  They can be built of any material, but must be rowed fixed seat, and with the rowlocks at the gunnel, that is with no outriggers.  They are rowed by one person, but must be capable of carrying a passenger……..  and a picnic.

Daylight, built by Topher Dawson of Ullapool, performed well coming second in the men’s race despite having to row with a set of oars that were a bit on the short side after an earlier gear failure caused by an oar/ lump of rock interface issue earlier in the day.  The winner of the men’s race was Adam Graham in the veteran Royal West of Scotland Boat Club’s “Fifteen”, (which is from their “Sixteen” class, confusingly).  The positions were reversed in the ladies race, with Jan Dawson powering past the finish line in Daylight ahead of the rest of the fleet.  Other boats taking part were a Thames skiff from Kinghorn, a Wemyss Skiff from St Andrews, a faering from Queensferry, and a flattie built by Archipelago folkschool.

 

Full results as follows:

Men:

  1.  “Fifteen” RWSABC  1.55
  2.  “Daylight” Ullapool 2.03
  3.   “Swona”  Glasgow  2.35
  4. “Serraphina” Kinghorn 2.43
  5. “Puffin” St Andrews 3.05
  6. “Otter”  Queensferry 3.17

 

Women:

  1. “Daylight”  Ullapool 2.36
  2. “Fifteen” RWSABC 2.57
  3. “Swona” Glasgow 3.02
  4. “Puffin” St Andrews 3.07

The magnificent picnic basket trophy is awarded to the best boat over the two categories, and so this year it is shared between Royal West and Ullapool.

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SCRA Freshwater Sprints Results 2018

Stunning Perthshire Autumn colours, sunshine but oh my it was cold.  The SCRA main season drew to a close once more with the Freshwater Sprints held at Loch Tummel Sailing Club.  Crews were made up from regional teams.  Thus instead of rowing for their clubs crews were racing for North West, North East, Fife, South East or South West.  St Kilda were also represented, with their crews were made up of spare rowers from South East who were happy to have an extra row.    Around 40 clubs were represented at the event…  quite an impressive turn out.

Racing was from a Start line to the West of the Sailing club down to a line of six buoys to the East of the club.  Each crew turned their own mark before heading back to a parallel finish line.  All distances were short, and racing in flat conditions was very close.  Full results below.  Points were awarded on the back of the race results, and the overall winning region was North East, claiming the title back from South East who won it the year before.

A report on the Picnic Class racing will follow.  Thanks due to An Eathar for taking and sharing these great photos.


 

 

Time/Category Lane 1 Lane 2 Lane 3 Lane 4 Lane 5 Lane 6
0920 Cox Brief            
1000 Men Open SW 4=

2PTS

SE 3

3PTS

NE 1

5PTS

FIFE 2

4 PTS

NW 4=

2PTS

 
1020 Women Open SE 3

3PTS

NE 2

4 PTS

FIFE 1

5PTS

NW 5

1 PTS

SW 4

2 PTS

ST KILDA 6TH
1040 MENS 2ND NE 4

3 PTS

FIFE 5

2 PTS

NW 6

1 PT

SW 1

5 PTS

SE 2

4 PTS

ST KILDA

3RD

1100 WOMENS 2ND FIFE 3

3PTS

NW 5

1 PT

SW 4

2 PTS

SE 2

4 PTS

NE 1

5 PTS

ST KILDA

6TH

1120 210+ MEN NW 6

1PT

SW 3

3 PTS

SE 2

4 PTS

NE 4

2 PTS

FIFE 1

5 PTS

ST KILDA

5TH

1140 210+ WOMEN NE 2

4 PTS

NW 5

1 PT

FIFE 3

3 PTS

SW 4

2 PTS

SE 1

5PTS

 
1200 U19 MIXED     NW 2

4 PTS

  NE 1

5 PTS

 
1220 SPARE RACE – NO POINTS AWARDED. NE 2     SW 4 SE 1 ST KILDA

3RD

1225 PICNIC MEN 1ST  15

1.55

2ND Daylight  2.03 3rd

Swona

2.35

4th

Kinghorn

2.43

5th

Puffin

3.05

6th

Otter

3.17

 

1245MEN INTERMEDIATE SE 4

2PTS

NE 3

3 PTS

FIFE DQ DID NOT TURN MARK SW 1

5 PTS

NW 2

4 PTS

 
1250 PICNIC WOMEN 1ST

DAYLIGHT

2.36

2ND

15

2.57

3RD

SWONA

3.2

4TH

PUFFIN

3.7

   
1320 WOMEN INTERMEDIATE NE 4

2PTS

FIFE 2

4 PTS

SW 3

3 PTS

NW 5

1 PT

SE  1

5 PTS

 

 
1340 MEN DECADES FIFE 2

4 PTS

SW 3

3 PTS

NW 5

1 PT

SE 1

5 PTS

NE 4

2 PTS

 
1400 WOMENS DECADES SW 5

1 PTS

NW 3

3 PTS

SE 4

2 PTS

NE 1

5 PTS

FIFE 2

4 PTS

ST KILDA

6TH

 

1420 MIXED INTERMEDIATE NW 5

1 PT

SW 1

5 PTS

SE 4

2 PTS

NE 2

4 PTS

FIFE 3

3 PTS

 
1440 MIXED 230+ SE 4

2 PTS

NW 5

1 PTS

NE 1

5PTS

FIFE 3

3PTS

SW 2

4 PTS

ST KILDA 6TH
1500 NOVICE WOMEN NE 4

2 PTS

FIFE 3

3 PTS

NW 5

1 PTS

SW 2

4 PTS

SE 1

5 PTS

 
1520 NOVICE MEN FIFE 2

4 PTS

SW 1

5 PTS

SE DNS NW 3

3 PTS

NE 4

2 PTS

 
1540 LD MIXED SW 4

2PTS

SE 3

3 PTS

NE 1

5 PTS

FIFE 2

4 PTS

NW 5

1 PT`

ST KILDA 6TH
1610 LD  MIXED  OPEN Lane  1

NW 5

1 PTS

Lane 2

FIFE 1

5 PTS

Lane 3

NE 3

3 PTS

Lane 4

SE 2

4 PTS

Lane 5

SW 4

2 PTS

Lane 6

ST KILDA

6TH

 

 

CUMULATIVE POINTS

Race Time  SW SE NE FIFE NW

 

1000 2 3 5 4 2
1020 4 3 4 5 1
1040 5 4 3 2 1
1100 2 4 5 3 1
1120 3 4 2 5 1
1140 2 5 4 3 1
1200 0 0 5 0 4
1245 5 2 3 DQ 0 4
1320 3 5 2 4 1
1340 3 5 2 4 1
1400 1 2 5 4 3
1420 5 2 4 3 1
1440 4 2 5 3 1
1500 4 5 2 3 1
1520 5 2 4 3
1540 2 3 5 4 1
1610 2 4 3 5 1
TOTALS 52   SW 53  SE 61 NE 56 FIFE 28 NW

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The African Skiff


A few months ago I posted about Hout Bay Yacht Club – a few miles south of Cape Town in South Africa – getting ready to build a skiff. The first skiff has been cut in South Africa and is now under construction in the HBYC clubhouse. It is a pretty familiar scene in the picture, but one that marks a new chapter in Skiffiedom with it being the first build on the African continent.

HBYC has a very ambitious program to build the skiffs, and it is hoped that other Yacht Clubs and community groups in the country will join our world. There has been interest from other places in South Africa so hopefully there will be some competition going on before too long. My contact at HBYC is hoping that they will be able to raise a team to join us in Stranraer next July.

If you are reading this from elsewhere in Southern Africa and want to join in, the kits are available from:

CKD Boats
www.ckdboats.com
Hout Bay
+27 (0)21 790 3859

Alec Jordan

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Three St Ayles Skiffs Join the Fleet

Three more community built St Ayles skiffs have been launched recently in Scotland.

Tiree Maritime Trust have launched their skiff Gille-Brìghde.  She takes number 175 on the register.  Picture from before the launch from the Tiree Maritime Trust Facebook Page.

 

Strathpeffer’s “Grebe” was built in the village, which is some way inland.  She was launched and is going to be rowing from the Storehouse on the Cromarty Firth.  Picture from the Strathpeffer and District Community Rowing Club Facebook Page. 

Nairn Launched Dulsie.  Skiffs from Findochty, Lossiemouth, Burghead , Findhorn and Ardersier were present to formally welcome Dulsie to the water.   Photos from Nairn Coastal Rowing Club Facebook Page.  Read the club’s own report on their website.

 

Neighbouring Skiffies welcome Dulsie to the water

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SCRA Course Laying & Umpiring Courses – October 2018

Ahead of the annual SCRA Freshwater Sprints and AGM at Loch Tummel on Saturday 27th October, the SCRA will be delivering Course Laying and Umpiring courses on the Friday – absolutely FREE!

This is a fantastic opportunity to develop your skills, learn something new and help to improve the quality and fairness of Scottish Coastal Rowing races. There are 15 places available on each of the courses, which will take place from Loch Tummel Sailing Club. Any SCRA club can send up to 3 members to take part. To book a place, email secretary@scottishcoastalrowing.org ASAP. Places will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis.

Course Laying

2-4pm, Friday 26th October – Loch Tummel Sailing Club.

Learn how to plan and set out a course for racing with practical on-the-water training. Bring suitable clothing for the weather and a lifejacket.

Umpiring – UMPIRE COURSE NOW FULL – To apply for a waiting list place for the next course please email secretary@scottishcoastalrowing.org

4.30pm-6.30pm, Friday 26th October – Loch Tummel Sailing Club.

Get to grips with the SCRA’s Rules of Racing and learn how to fairly and effectively umpire in a range of racing situations. You will have the opportunity to put your new skills to use and gain some practical experience by umpiring at the Freshwater Sprints the following day. Bring a notepad and pen.

 

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Freshwater Sprints 2018: Notice of Race

The SCRA Freshwater Sprints (sponsored by Teal Engineering) will take place at Loch Tummel on Saturday 27 October 2018.    It is run in conjunction with our AGM, so we really want at least a couple of representatives from every SCRA member club to come along.  And it is a fun sociable event too!  Racing is held in regional teams, so when you race you will be rowing with members of other clubs.  If you would like to sign up to race, please contact your regional Captain as set out in the Freshwater Sprints 2018 Notice of Race.

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SCRA Green Flag Awards 2018

Glasgow Coastal Rowing Club’s recent River Clean on the Clyde. Photo: Keep Scotland Beautiful

In an initiative launched in 2017, the SCRA is now awarding clubs with Green Flags to recognise initiatives that reduce the impact of our events on the marine environment.

The first two of these prestigious awards were presented to St Ayles Rowing Club of Anstruther and to Isle of Seil Coastal Rowing Club for innovations at their 2017 events.

Anstruther have always taken care to minimise their impact, and have been asking visitors to bring their own mugs with them to share in the Anster cake and tea splendour at their annual regatta.  They went further in 2017 by specifically putting one of their members in charge of recycling any waste that was generated at their event. Rather than buying in any plastic, they went to their local charity shop to purchase mugs, plates, cutlery really cheaply on the promise that they would donate it back after the event!

Isle of Seil Coastal Rowing Club’s 2017 event was all about improving the local environment.  Rather than organising a regatta, for the last three years the club and visitors have mustered on local islands to clean them up.  The club are assisted in this endeavour by a grant from a local trust, to whom the club sends in before and after pictures with coordinates, number of bags filled and number people involved.

Seil’s Island Clean Up

To get your hands on an SCRA Green Flag Award is simple. Get out there and do something positive for your local marine environment and make sure to send us a short report with some photos. The SCRA Committee will then award green flags at their discretion.

The next round of awards will be presented at the SCRA AGM at Loch Tummel on Saturday 27th October. To be included in this round of awards, submit your reports to secretary@scottishcoastalrowing.org by Sunday 21st October.

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