Rally Reports


18/19th APRIL 2015

The first rally of the 2015 season for Sutton Mariners kicked off to a great success with 8 boats going to Shepards Wharf Marina, West Cowes and 28 people dining at the Island Sailing Club.

The weekend was especially auspicious as 2 of the boats were joining in the fun for the first time with the club. They were ‘Katisha’, a Hunter Channel 31, a joint venture owned by Colin Clare, Andrew Wood and their respective wives, Libby and Marianne together with ‘Mushu’, a Snapdragon 27, owned by Alfie Moore and crewed by Alfie’s dad Kevin and brother George together with their good friend Charlie.

A real family event as Kevin’s dad Ron Moore (Alfie and Georgie’s granddad) also attended on his own boat,’Barny B’.

The weather was better than forecast, with an easterly wind giving an easy run to Cowes. ‘Caressa’, a Lotus yacht from New Zealand, went on to Newtown Creek for lunch, whilst ‘Petal’, an MG335, had lunch on the Hamble midstream pontoon and ‘Kwiksort’, a Westerly Konsort, went past Cowes and picked up a midstream pontoon in the Medina River for their pit stop.

All 8 boats were berthed together at Shepards Wharf after some manoeuvring and rafting up. Dinner was partaken at the splendid Island Sailing Club who provided delicious food enjoyed by all.

Sunday found the wind had gone more NE with all round sunshine providing a good beat or fetch back to Portsmouth and Chichester. The following yachts also attended the rally, ‘Whistling Rufus’, ‘Shearwater’ and ‘Barny B’.

All agreed it was a good start to the season.


Navigators Challenge for the Derek Fowler Challenge Cup

 and Bucklers Hard BBQ Rally 30th/31st May 2015

Five boats made the start line near to Portsmouth Harbour. These were Kwiksort, Katisha, Caressa, Barney B and Knights Challenge. Petal (committee boat) gave the five minute warning which was to be the only starting instruction and at 1200 hrs all the boats seemed a little hesitant to get away but in the event Carresa was first out of the blocks. Crewed by John, Blake and Peter, they made a good distance from the pack but not quite in the right direction. Knights Challenge with new members Mike and Janine with Janet were about five minutes behind the fleet after having to battle against the tide to make the start

The object of the challenge is to sail the course which was given as clues and/or lat and lon etc., and to obtain the unique identity number of each mark. Unfortunately the organiser was unaware that the new plastic type buoys have no such mark unlike the older steel buoys that have a welded no on the body of the buoy. This was to be completed without the use of any electronic aids.

As the wind got up it became increasingly more difficult to round the marks and get the numbers as well with as an added hindrance for two of the five boats being just two handed.

As the wind grew even stronger, Barney B, whose crew (and I’m guessing) with a combined age in excess of 200 years, decided that they had got enough experience between them and didn’t need any more and so retired as did Kwiksort with gear failure.

Caressa was first to finish with an elapsed time of 2hrs 32min. The next to finish was Knights Challenge in 2hrs 49min with a clear round. Next was Katisha in 3hrs 25min who sailed the whole course but failed to identify the number on Prince Consort.

As Knights Challenge was the only boat to complete the course and get all the information, they were declared the winners.

Then into Bucklers hard for well-earned refreshments and a tasty BBQ.

The trophy will be awarded at the Sutton Mariners A.G.M. in October.

To see the details of the challenge course click here -> Fowler Challenge 2015

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Off on the challenge.            Time for relaxing after.        What tactics did you use?



20th/21st JUNE 2015

Six Mariners’ boats and 18 members set off east for Littlehampton on a calm Saturday morning in a light westerly breeze. Sailing through the Looe Channel, many were able fly cruising chutes or goose wing under sunny skies, past Bognor and into the River Arun. The fleet berthed on the town quay before being ferried across to the welcoming surroundings of the Arun Yacht Club. This was not the first club visit to the Arun YC and everyone was as friendly as always and the meal was excellent.

However, the return trip to Littlehampton on Sunday was an altogether different affair! Once out of the shelter of Selsey Bill the wind built up to a constant force 6/7 westerly on the nose. Getting back through the Looe Channel was a lumpy bumpy experience with wind over tide that no one found enjoyable. Nevertheless everyone got through safely including a single hander and two other boats with relatively inexperienced crews. It all took considerably longer than the same voyage on the previous day.

It was a great weekend with much to remember.      

2015-06-20 19.35.00 The Moore Family. Alfie, dad Kevin, granddad Ron and brother George.

2015-06-20 19.38.27The view from the Arun Y.C.

2015-06-20 19.36.20Brenda, Frances and Len enjoying the evening.


Hardway Rally and RML Trophy challenge

3rd/4th October 2015

This was a first time visit to Hardway S.C. as a rally for Sutton Mariners which proved to very successful.

A hard decision for the committee to make as many boat owners berth in Portsmouth Harbour and it needed some sort of activity to ensure that they could leave the harbour with a purpose. The RML Trophy had been donated to the club earlier in the year by Pat Lock in memory of her husband, Richard Lock, who had been a member of Sutton Mariners for some years. It was decided this year to hold a timed challenge round the Nab Tower on the Saturday of this rally with the new trophy as a prize.

Two boats, Barney B and Sea Otter, sailed from their berths in Chichester Harbour on the Friday to spend the night on the Hardway pontoon in order that they could take part in the challenge. Some other members drove to their boats on the Friday evening and met up with them for a drink and a chat in the club bar. 

Seven boats had signed up for the challenge. The Saturday morning started with no wind which made everyone wonder whether the challenge would actually take place. There was talk of shortening the course to the Bembridge Ledge buoy if the wind increased enough. However, it became a struggle to reach the starting point at Gledes buoy at the agreed time so it was decided to shorten the course even further to round the Tide Gauge at the entrance to Bembridge Harbour. This would give the slower boats a chance of finishing the course. Everyone managed to start, albeit at a slow pace. It was agreed that the contenders did not necessarily have to pass between the forts and go through the gap in the submarine barrier on the Isle of Wight side if they wished. By this time the wind increased slightly and the faster boats managed to get away (a bit) from the main body of boats. By the time the slower boats got round the Tide Gauge the wind had increased to a force 3 which made it very nice sail in the end. Everyone took their finish time as they passed Gledes on the return and passed it on to the handicapper, Derek Fowler to sort out the results.

The evening saw all crews meet up for a meal in the club for a meal and a chat about the days events. Sunday morning, many returned to the clubhouse for breakfast before leaving to return to their berths with Barney B and Sea Otter first away in order to get back to Chichester by high water.

A very enjoyable weekend which will probably be repeated at some time.

The results of the RML Challenge on corrected time are as follows :-

1st Whistling Rufus.

2nd Petal

3rd Sheerwater

4th Sea Otter

5th Barney B

6th Kwiksort

7th Katisha.

Congratulations to all those that took part.