Please select your home edition
Edition
Ovington 2021 - ILCA 1 - LEADERBOARD

VX One Champion, 37 years on from Prince of Wales Cup win

by Mark Jardine 6 Jul 2017 13:00 BST 6 July 2017
VX One Nationals at Sunderland © Tim Olin / www.olinphoto.co.uk

David Chandler recently won the VX One National Championship at Sunderland Yacht Club, 37 years after winning the Prince of Wales Cup, the one-race nationals for the International 14 class. We spoke to him about how he's 're-living his youth' in the VX One.

Mark Jardine: You had a windy event in Sunderland, did you find the VX One easy to handle?

David Chandler: The VX One is a very easy boat to drive and get going, it's when you stall or stop that things get difficult.

Mark: You have a few people at Ullswater who've decided to join the VX One fleet. What is the appeal of the class?

David: I'd had a couple of operations done on my knee and was sailing a Wayfarer that I was hobbling around in. I met up with Howard Steavenson, a fellow VX One sailor who'd had to have his ankle fused, and he suggested I come out with him for a sail in his VX One. I went out and just loved it. He told me I should get one, so I asked my wife, telling her that I could actually sail the boat with my dodgy knees. She's very forgiving and told me to go for it!

Mark: So the VX One was better for your knees than the Wayfarer?

David: Correct! It's not an easier boat to sail, but with the interior being so uncluttered, if you know what you're doing, it's a fantastic boat.

Mark: Both you and Howard are ex-International 14 sailors. Do you think the VX One could attract more high performance sailors who are looking for something a bit less aggressive?

David: Yes, I think it should. Unlike some keelboats it's a little bit wetter, but it makes it feel like you are in a dinghy and you haven't gone over to the 'dark side' of a keelboat!

Mark: So it's a way of extending your high-performance sailing life-span?

David: I think so. Also Charlie, my son - who crewed for me, has won in the D-Ones and is an International Canoe sailor - thinks it's a marvellous boat to sail, so the appeal is certainly there.

Mark: Back in 1980, when you were sailing International 14s, you won the single-race Prince of Cup race during PoW Week. Could you tell me a bit about that?

David: I'd been sailing International 14s since 1975 on the river at Tewkesbury, and we had a great team of 14ers who travelled to events all around the South West, and when I got into my working life I decided to have a go at the Open circuit. I met some marvellous people, who I still know today, and sailed the PoW that year in the beautiful Tor Bay, hosted by the Royal Torbay Yacht Club. It was a great race, we started on port, crossed the fleet and led from start to finish!

Mark: Did you think you had another National Championship win in you?

David: When my children were growing up we went through Graduates, then Cadets where I was taking them around the open meetings. Charlie and I also sailed a Leader in 1990 as a few of my friends had got them and won the Nationals in that, so I've kept my hand in. When you have a family you have to commit your time to them and I can safely say I've got a son who is now a far better sailor than me and certainly a lot fitter than I was at that age!

Mark: And Charlie has gone on to win the D-One National Championships I believe?

David: He has, and he's now getting himself ready for the International Canoe World Championships in Pwllheli.

Mark: It sounds like the VX One is an ideal boat for a father-son combination to sail in.

David: Very much so. For me it means I have all the strength up at the front of the boat and all I have to do is push it in the right direction - which he tells me is the wrong direction, obviously!

Mark: What would you say to high performance sailors, whatever class they're in, who are finding that class a bit too hard going, about the VX One?

David: I would say it's a very friendly, welcoming class with good, competitive sailing. Everyone has a very good attitude.

Mark: What's next up for you?

David: The Worlds at Lake Garda! We're expecting some American, Swiss, Belgian, German and Australian sailors to join us for that so it should be a really good event, and good to see the setup that is being used by different teams around the world. I know in Australia they sail the boat with a much tighter slot than we do over here and I think it'll be great for the class.

Mark: Best of luck at Lake Garda and many thanks for your time.

David: No problem at all Mark. I look forward to speaking to you again soon.

Find out more about the VX One at www.ovingtonboats.com/shop/vxone.html

Related Articles

Just a second
Hull 1 of the Farr X2 has lost its keel offshore - the remains have washed up Hull #1 of the Farr X2 has lost its keel offshore, and the remains have washed up on a beach on the South Coast of NSW. Mercifully, the two sailors on board are alive, and subsequently had a wee sojourn in hospital to ensure all is well. Posted on 3 Jul
14s Forever
Nothing lasts forever.... unless you're an International 14 The International 14 would bring the giants of 'between the wars' dinghy design, Morgan-Giles, Thornycroft and Fox, to the fore whilst at the same time laying the foundations of sailing competition on the international stage. Posted on 1 Jul
Understanding safety onboard
With Ocean Safety Ambassador Dee Caffari MBE and Ocean Safety MD Alistair Hackett YachtsandYachting.com's Mark Jardine talks to Ocean Safety Ambassador Dee Caffari MBE and Ocean Safety MD Alistair Hackett to get a better understanding of the safety features needed onboard yachts. Posted on 29 Jun
The utterly brilliant Foiling SuMoth Challenge
Promoting sustainable practices by challenging young naval architecture and engineering students The Foiling SuMoth Challenge is a competition inspired by the need of a more sustainable and efficient sailboat designs and manufacturing methods. Posted on 28 Jun
A Fine Line
Dinghy historian Dougal Henshall looks at race officers and start lines As the world around us reblooms after the constraints of lockdown, there is plenty of food for thought surrounding the debate as to something of a reset for dinghy racing. Older sailors talk in nostalgic terms of the delights of the 'golden era'. Posted on 22 Jun
Not just another...
…case of miscellaneous ramblings. You might say that, but you could well have missed the point. …case of miscellaneous ramblings. I mean, yes, you might say that, but you could well have missed the point right there. Posted on 20 Jun
How high is too high?
Is the price of a new Moth an existential threat to the class? Inflation, the cost of living, energy and travel costs are all weighing heavily on people's minds around the world. Sailing is in no way insulated from the problems in the world at the moment. Posted on 14 Jun
The road to responsibility
It's easier said than done Achieving the goal of becoming a responsible technical clothing brand is hard. If it was easy then every manufacturer would do it in an instant and shout from the tallest building that their clothing was 100% green, carbon neutral and recyclable. Posted on 8 Jun
Short and sweet.
A bit of a departure from some, for sure, but never fear. Well this particular missive certainly will be. Yes. I know. A bit of a departure from some, for sure, but never fear. It does not mean anything, other than this is just shorter… Posted on 5 Jun
Timeless designs
It's hard to believe that two of the most popular dinghies were designed over 50 years ago It's hard to believe that two of the most popular dinghies were designed over 50 years ago. Between the Hobie 16 and the ILCA over 350,000 have been produced; what is even more remarkable is that they are still going strong. Posted on 31 May