Round Shuna Race

Here is a short clip of "Troikka" and "Out of the Blue" crossing the finish line, taken by Iain Sinclair on the Committee boat "Black Pepper"


Portavadie Weekend & Ladies Race

Reports are not yet in on how the Pursuit Race from Kip to Portavadie went but Seamus and Stewart have provided, respectively, photos and an account of the Ladies Race which was fought with the usual intensity, tenacity and perseverance that we all associate with the Serpent lady members.

 Stewart Toy writes: The Ladies Race was a very exciting affair, flirting with the wind (or lack of it). On numerous occasions we contemplated taking the plug out the bottom of our most loved possession. When OOTB decided to move she seemed to prefer going north bringing Ardrishaig onto the horizon. For two hours suicide was just off the menu. Exody started the realisation that there was life after Portavadie. With a long hike home Marion graciously retired. On offering Jane the opportunity of sanity (abandon the race) she declined only because Camus Bosta was the only boat pointing in the right direction. But no--the idea of removing oneself from the dreich weather prevailed and Jane succumbed to the possibility of a hot bath--not in Loch Fyne--and retired. 
That left Kelpie and ourselves. Nail biting stuff. But hey-ho Kelpie had flown off to mid channel and, yes, there was --what was the word--- yes--wind--just a wee bit--but enough to point her in the right direction of the finish line.
On realising the outcome we graciously retired (not that we had a hope in hell of catching  Audrey) and headed off to be on station at the finish line at 90 degrees to Skeg Mor (long, long race). So with a toot on our hooter Audrey, deservedly, took line honours and won the Ladies Race 2011."



A Message from the Commodore
We have all been watching the recent weather with concern and dismay, as high winds wreck our hopes of relaxing sailing and it will come as no surprise to those not involved, that the Spring Muster was cancelled due to the high wind warnings.
We have, however, our next muster at Portavadie on June 18/19, and we have transferred the programme for the spring Tarbert weekend to this muster. We are therefore running the Saturday race from Kip to Portavadie, followed by the Ladies Race to Kames on the Sunday. This will be combined with a dinner at the Portavadie Marina on the Saturday evening. We would like, of course, to welcome as many members as possible to participate in this weekend, either racing, cruising or even coming by car.
By the law of averages, surely we must be in line for some improvement in the weather by then !
Tom Barrie, Commodore
The decision to cancel the race was not because of the weather on Saturday, which was windy, but because of Sunday‟s weather which was much worse. A number of boats had already cancelled and we were concerned that if we continued, people might get stranded in Tarbert. The following is an extract from an e mail from Tom Clark whose boat Boxer was tied up behind Ernest on Saturday evening in Tarbert.
“Without doubt, cancelling was the correct call since size and experience were both needed as the wind strengthened. Ernest Bennie left Tarbert early on Sunday and had 40kts across the deck. We recorded 50kts and today ( Monday) at Largs, as I collected the cooked food left in the oven, we had a SEVERE GALE and the wind was 60 -70 mph and maybe more in the gusts. “

However, although the Muster was cancelled, some hardy Serpent members in Que Chica and Jomora had already reached Tarbert and were joined by Out of the Blue and Kelpie D who travelled there by car. They decided as they were there anyway, they would go along to try out the newly refurbished Anchor Hotel. Under new management, it has been transformed and is looking fabulous. The food is delicious.

Please note that the committee has decided that as the club cancelled the muster and the race, the club will absorb the Anchor Hotel‟s cancellation fee and all dinner payments and race fees will be refunded.

Clyde Get Together Portavadie – Saturday 18/19th June
As we have a number of cups which we normally give out to the winners of the Spring Muster races, we have decided to transfer these cups to the races being run on the Portavadie weekend.
Race instructions for the weekend are attached. These races follow the Spring muster format with the finish of Saturday‟s race being off Skate Island instead of at Tarbert.
Dinner has been organised upstairs in the Restaurant at Portavadie marina. Each boat crew is to pay the restaurant directly, choosing from a set two or three course menu.
Summer Muster – 23rd and 24th July – Craobh Haven
The format will be similar to last year, with a barbeque in the boat shed at Craobh Marina on Saturday evening followed by the Round Shuna Race on Sunday. See attached for further details.
Steve Pickles is organising this event, so if you are intending coming along please let him know , so he can estimate numbers for catering. Steve can be contacted on 01555 666348 or 07981443362. If no answer, leave a message or email him at stephen.pickles 'AT' btinternet.com
Autumn Muster 10/11th September
We are returning to Rothesay for this year‟s Autumn Muster. The restaurant at Mount Stewart has been booked and we are looking forward to a re- run of last year‟s enjoyable weekend.
We will be racing from Kip to Rothesay on Saturday with a pursuit race back to Kip on Sunday.
29th October Frostbite Race - Largs
A date to put in your diary-as usual this race will be starting at Largs and sailing round the Cumbraes.
Fri 9th December - Annual Dinner and Prize Giving
Another date to note in your diary. The Art Club has been booked again this year and new caterers have been engaged so we are looking forward to an enjoyable evening.

Photography Competition.
The annual photography competition has become part of the club‟s annual programme with judging taking place at the annual dinner. This year's competition is entitled “All At Sea”.
So get snapping

Log Competition
There is also a competition for best log. Jane Hinshalwood last year raised this to a new level and had a clear run. As there is a cup at stake, remember to write up your log on your summer voyages.  If they get the fingers tapping the iPads there could be an tense and exciting shoot-out between Dugald and Val Glen's account of their voyaging in Scandinavia and Robbie and Alyson Rodger's Mediterranean exploits.


Tanit on the RORC Cervantes race.

Tanit passes the Nab tower. Next stop France

Three Serpents looking skeely-ish but about to be overtaken.  Tanit ended up with a respectable placing in class. Photos by Roisin.


New season

At Kip, Aquaholic leads the splash-in race on 20th March. As of about the same date Tulla is in also and Troikka followed on by 2nd April. On that day also Stewart Toy abandoned the lambing and set to work on OOTB at long last. Don't be fooled by the wide angle shot. Aquaholic does not have a stumpy wee keel!


Proposed Clyde Coastguard Closure

At the AGM on 21st Feb a vote was taken and an overwhelming majority of those attending agreed on the motion that the proposal to close local coastguard centres was a regressive step. The Commodore then agreed that the Club should issue its own protest on the issue. 
However it should also be noted that  the Maritime and Coastguard Agency have announced a series of public meetings concerning the proposed Coastguard modernisation programme
The purpose of the meeting is to provide an opportunity for the local communities around the existing Maritime Rescue Coordination Centres (MRCCs) to hear more about the proposals, ask questions of MCA representatives and have the opportunity to express their views. Each meeting will be independently chaired and will begin at 7:30pm, expecting to draw to a close by 9pm.

Attending such a meeting may be an effective way to register dissatisfaction with the proposals and our local Clyde meeting will be on  Wednesday 2 March 2011, Port Glasgow Town Hall, 35 King Street, Port Glasgow.

The Government has recently produced a paper containing proposals to modernise the Coastguard service around the country to bring it into the 21st Century. They are proposing closing 10 out of the 18 existing Coastguard stations, including the bases on the Clyde and Forth and considerably reducing the numbers of Coastguards employed. In future Scotland will be managed through one main control centre at Aberdeen with a sub centre at Stornoway or Shetland which will be a daylight hours only station. The closure of the Clyde Maritime Co-ordination Rescue Centre is planned for 2012/13.
The Club has received a letter from the Clyde Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre saying that they consider the proposal to be seriously flawed.
They identify the following concerns:
Loss of local knowledge and expertise would delay response times
Reliance on two main centres places pressure on the other if there is a technical breakdown at one of them. The present system has more capacity to cope with such a situation.
The higher dependence on IT rather than local centres staffed by people with local knowledge, increases risk and reduces capacity in the system in times of stress
Why close the busiest station in Scotland at a time when the west coast is becoming busier with yachts, merchant shipping and cruise liners.

They close the letter by saying that they feel that this is a cost saving exercise which will have an impact on the mariner and the coastal user on the west coast of Scotland and urge us to make our concerns known.

:Read the full proposal here

If you wish to respond to the paper click here

The consultation period ends at 5pm on the 24th March 2011. If anyone would like to see the full version of the letter from the Clyde Maritime and Rescue Centre, let me know and I’ll send them a copy. However I would urge you, if you feel strongly about this proposal, to make your views known.
A Message from the Commodore
During the Christmas and New Year period, we have had another severe, and this time earlier, winter which amongst all the disruptions of frozen pipes, treacherous roads and traffic chaos, forced us to cancel the Club Dinner and Prize Giving, an unprecedented event in the club’s history.
This was not an easy decision to take and I apologise for any inconvenience caused but in the light of so many cancellations it became obvious that it would not be viable to run the dinner. As a result any cheques that were sent to me to pay for tickets have now been shredded and will not be presented to the bank.
Although we considered re-arranging the Dinner at a later date in January, this proved to be impossible to organise.
However to allow those of you who were successful in the races to adorn your sideboards with silverware, we have decided this year to amalgamate the Prize Giving within the AGM and this combined event will be held at The Golden Jubilee Hospital on Monday 21st February.
I hope you will be able to attend and I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the AGM and Prize Giving.
Tom Barrie

Annual General Meeting - 21st February 2011
The Annual General Meeting of the Serpent Yacht Club will be held on Monday 21st February 2011 in the Board Room at the Golden Jubilee Hospital, Beardmore Street, Clydebank.
A buffet supper will be served at 7pm with the AGM starting at 7.30pm.
The 2010 Prize Giving and Annual Photographic Competition will follow the AGM.

Annual Subscriptions
Your annual subscription is now due, so if you haven’t already paid by standing order could you please forward your cheque to:-
Val Glen, Treasurer, 9 Abercromby Pl, Stirling, FK8 2QP
Subscriptions have been held at £10 for single membership, £15 for joint /family membership. Cheques should be made payable to “The Serpent Yacht Club”.