A Rainy Day, Some Old Photos, and a Bit of Nautical History

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Thu 16 Apr 2015 00:22
It being a rainy day I have spent most of it in the library sorting out some old photos, taken when we set out on our first circumnavigation back in 2001, predating cheap digital cameras and before I had started this web log.  I had scanned them into my computer some months back, and today selected a few to fill in some of the missing record.
Here are some photos of Sylph at anchor off Tangalooma, Moreton Island, in company with the famous Solo, another Alan Payne designed steel yacht. Solo was originally owned by Vic Meyers who skippered her in eight consecutive Sydney to Hobart yacht races from 1955 to 1962.  She gained line honours in ‘58 and ‘59 and won on handicap in ‘56 and ‘62.  Sylph competed alongside her in the ‘61 and ‘62 races, but, unsurprisingly, did not perform anywhere near as well.  In 1961 Sylph came 21st on handicap out of 37 yachts starting, and in ‘62 came 14th out of 44 yachts starting.  Solo retired from racing in 1962, while Sylph competed in three more races.  In 1963 Sylph came 34th out of 44 yachts starting, ten of which retired, so while she was the last boat to actually finish, given that it must have been a rough year, that is still  respectable achievement.  Sylph’s final race was in 1971 when, under new ownership, she came in 73rd on corrected time out of a fleet of 79 yachts.  Perhaps wisely, with yachts getting lighter and lighter, and Sylph less and less competitive, no one else took up the challenge of another Sydney to Hobart yacht race with her, though I must confess to a hankering to give it a go one day, just for the hell of it.
m_Sylph, Solo 1a
m_Sylph, Solo 2a
m_Sylph, Solo 3a
All is well.