First Blog

Tim Chapman and Nancy Martiniuk
Sat 21 Apr 2012 07:18


Current Location

Quayside Marina, Southampton - 50:54.8530N 1:22.7650W



Hi, we're Tim Chapman and Nancy Martiniuk.  We have been the proud owners of Larus, a Slipper 42 ketch since 1998.


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About Tim Chapman

Tim is skipper, electrician, engineer and telecoms expert, and has very recently retired at the ripe old of age of 50 from a career in IT in the Event Management Industry. 


About Nancy Martiniuk

I'm crew, self-employed cook, teacher of English as a Foreign Language and ship's blogger, and have worked in planes, trains, bars, chalets and mostly recently boats. 


About Us

Tim and I met in 1986 at the ferry terminal in Brindisi, Italy. 


Tim was travelling to begin work as a windsurfing and sailing instructor on the island of Ithaca and I was backpacking with my girlfriend, Susan.


Susan and I had made the decision to go to Greece the previous day in Florence.  It was Easter and there was no room at the inn, any inn. We were considering sleeping in a field with a couple of Australian girls who had introduced themselves as Pippy and Lavender, but referred to each other Mary or Jane or like.  After a brief confab, Susan and I decided that going to Greece was a much better option and hopped back on a train with our Eurorail passes to Brindisi the next morning.


While we were waiting in the terminal café for the next ferry to Patras, we noticed a young man at a nearby table.  At some point he disappeared but there on the table remained a book.  A quick recce established that the book was in English and I nabbed it, free English books being few and far between in those parts of the world, and told the waiter, 'If the guy comes back, I have his book.'  The guy did come back and as chance would have it, he was heading for Greece as well.  He joined us at our table and once on board, we travelled together with a host of other backpackers.


By the time we arrived in Patras, a day and a half later, it had been established that Susan and I would spend a week together in Greece, after which she would return to Canada, where we are both from, and I would carry on to Ithaca where Tim was working for Greek Island Sailing Club.


One week later, Tim received a call from the Patras to Ithaca ferry Captain, advising him of my imminent arrival.  We spent the summer together, Tim working for Greek Island Sailing Club and me working in local cafés.


Twenty seven years later, we are still together and still sailing.


During this time, we built our first boat 'Tristar', a 31' Tristar Trimaran design by Ed Horstman of Venice, California and currently moored on the north Coast of Devon.  Back in '86, we met Steve Janes, an American we got to know while he was anchored off the beach in Frikes, Ithaca. He had been sailing around the world for the past 11 years, on the 31' Tristar Trimaran he had built, called 'Zoom'.  We were pretty impressed, I can tell you, and spent the next 2 years in the UK building 'Tristar.'


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We sold 'Tristar' in '98, having sailed on her for 10 years.



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This is 'Tristar' several years after we sold her, spotted on a mooring at Instow near Barnstaple by our nephew, Toby.


About Larus


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Larus was designed by Holman and Pye and built by Tyler's in Tonbridge in 1981. We purchased Larus, originally called Fair Lady of Lytham, in 1998 from Les Hughes, Essex.  Les had been using Larus to teach Astral Navigation and she was rated Cat 0 for charter.



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She has a centre cockpit and a long fin keel and, in my biased opinion, looks as pretty out of the water as she does in it.


Tim has changed, modified, updated almost every aspect her electronics, navigation systems, telecommunications, plumbing, engine, sail plan, reefing system, spars and rigging and many more things than I can remember.  He has also added mod cons like a generator, solar panels and a water maker with the aim of making us as self-sufficient as possible.


More about us

We will soon be going sailing and intend to write about it here.



yachtlarus (at)