Please select your home edition
Leaderboard FD July August September 2023

HD Sails Scottish Solo Travellers at Loch Ard Sailing Club

by Ross Watson 11 Oct 2022 12:09 BST 8 October 2022
HD Sails Scottish Solo Travellers at Loch Ard © Robert Signer

The Scottish Solo fleet gathered at Loch Ard Sailing Club on October 8 for the last of this season's HD Sails Travellers Series. The travellers series looked set to be decided at this event as the three leaders, Kevan Gibb, Keith Milroy and Charlie Brecknell, had only a few points between them.

Whilst the wind forecast for the day looked reasonable with a westerly breeze expected the weather had another impact. Heavy rain meant that the club emailed me the day before to say that the drive into the club was flooded and we should bring our wellies. They were right and the changing room chat was full of moans about leaking wellies! Most of the fleet rigged in the carpark but the contingent from Largo Bay SC arrived with a triple trailer pulled by a 4WD and drove straight to the club. There were twelve entries for the event and we welcomed Robert Taylor from Dalgety Bay SC for his first travellers event.

On arrival we were greeted by a light easterly breeze, the opposite to what was forecast, and ominous as Loch Ard is set in a bowl amongst the Trossach hills and prone to variable winds. There was time for a chat about venues for next season with numerous options discussed. Before we launched the wind had shifted round to the west and slowly strengthened although there were plenty of shifts and gusts to keep us on our toes.

Before race 1 Kevan Gibb was seen with the sailing instructions in his hands discussing the course with the race committee which led to a slight change. Your scribe pointed out that we could lay the first mark. Local sailor Robert Signer replied saying 'no you won't' and proved it by taking the left side of the beat and leading the fleet to the mark as the wind shifted left. Kevan Gibb recovered from a slow first beat and got into the lead on the last long beat, only to miss a gust down the reach and capsize. Despite inverting his recovery was rapid and he only lost a single place to Keith Milroy with Stuart Gibson third.

For the second race the course was changed giving a shorter beat. Kevan Gibb judged the shifts up the first beat best and led to the windward mark, which he held to the finish. There were some decent gusts in this race with some good planning on the reaches. The gusts caught out a few sailors and your scribe spotted Robert Taylor and Donald Aitken going for a dip. Behind Kevan Stuart Gibson came in ahead of Keith Milroy.

The wind shifted to the right for the last race and with a heavily biased line and a fetch to the first mark a recall looked inevitable. In the event we had two general recalls - no-one could remember the last time that happened at a Scottish travellers event. Keith Milroy led off the line and was followed by Kevan Gibb and Ross Watson. These positions remained the same until the last short beat. A lift just as Ross rounded left the three boats much closer together leaving Keith in a tricky position. He tacked away from the shore first but at the finish had dropped behind Kevan and Ross. Behind them positions were very tight with the next three boats crossing within seconds of each other.

Everyone in the fleet had close racing in each race and the shifting wind meant no lead was ever secure. With two first places Kevan Gibb was the clear winner on the day followed Keith Milroy and Stuart Gibson. The series result for the HD Sails Scottish Solo travellers are decided on the best four results from the eight scheduled over the season, of which at least one must be either an inland or sea event. The result was a tie between Keith Milroy and Kevan Gibb resolved in favour of Keith as a result of one more first place. Stuart Gibson was third. This year the winner of the Travelling Trophy was awarded to Bruce Birrell from Largo Bay SC.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3Pts
1st6043Kevan GibbLargo Bay‑2112
2nd5602Kieth MilroySt Marys SC1‑334
3rd5948Stuart GibsonCCC Bardowie32(DNC)5
4th5841Ross WatsonEast Lothian‑4426
5th4975Charlie BrecknellChanonary SC6‑7410
6th4766David WhyteCCC Bardowie‑115611
7th4502Malcolm WorsleyRTYC56‑911
8th5889David ParkinASYC7‑8512
9th4856Robert SignerLASC‑109716
10th4517Robert TaylorDalgety Bay SC8‑10816
11th4850Donald AitkenLargo Bay9(RET)DNC22
12th561Bruce BirrellLargo Bay1211(RET)23

Related Articles

Solos at Chanonry
HD Sails Scottish Travellers Series underway after a delayed start to the season After a delayed start to the season the HD Sails Scottish travellers series got under way at Chanonry SC on May 11. The season opening event at Bardowie in late April was abandoned due to lack of wind. Posted on 16 May
Solo Northern Area Championships at Ogston
Nobody could immediately work out who'd won the event, so it was left to Sailwave Round 2 of the Northern Series took place at Ogston Sailing Club in Derbyshire and this event was given the prestige of being the Northern Area Championships. Fifteen visitors joined the eight home boats and all were welcomed to glorious sunshine. Posted on 15 May
Salcombe Yacht Club Sailing Club Series Race 4
Sailors tried to recall which mark was indeed M and which was O The fourth instalment in the SYC Sailing Club Series proceeded under the watchful eye of Race Officer Graham Cranford-Smith. The sun was shining and a steady force 3 had set in, so all that was left now was to set the course, and what a course it was! Posted on 13 May
Solos at South Staffs
9 locals joined by 13 visitors for Allen Solo Midland Series round 2 South Staffs SC welcomed visitors from across the region for round 2 of the Allen Solo Midland Series. Nine local boats were joined by thirteen visitors from as far as Northampton, Budworth, and Ogston making up a healthy turnout of 22 boats. Posted on 8 May
Solo class April Series at Hayling Island
Several brand new boats and new faces in the fleet The Solo class has historically enjoyed a good following at Hayling Island and the start of 2024 is no exception with several brand new boats and new faces in a mixture of new and used boats. Posted on 29 Apr
Burghfield Solo Open
A much expanded lake due to flooding in recent months The good, the bad, and the Adonises of the Solo class rocked up to Burghfield Sailing Club for an open meeting on Saturday 20th April to do battle on a much expanded lake due to flooding in recent months. Posted on 23 Apr
Solo Northern Series Round 1 at Burwain
A bright sunny morning greets the fleet This was the first event of the series, held on the 20th of April. A bright sunny morning greeted the competitors, it was time for a bacon sandwich and cup of tea whilst the wind filled in. Posted on 23 Apr
Salcombe Yacht Club Sailing Club Series Race 1
A formidable lineup of 20 boats on the Fast Handicap start line The commencement of the annual Yawl training weekend marked the kick-off for the Sailing Club Series, boasting a formidable lineup of 20 boats at the starting line. Posted on 22 Apr
North Sails Solo Spring Championship
Charlie Cumbley stays just ahead of Oliver Davenport King George SC welcomed 28 eager competitors and though the number of entrants was lower than previous years, the quality and depth of talent was so impressive that the 227 mile journey to cover this event was a no brainer. Posted on 16 Apr
Salcombe Yacht Club Spring Series Race 6
Ideal weather conditions attracted a strong turnout for the concluding race Ideal weather conditions attracted a strong turnout for the concluding race of the spring series, with 8 teams assembling at the start line. Posted on 15 Apr