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Solway YC GUL National 12 Scottish Championship and Palnackie Pursuit Race

Solway Yacht Club
GUL National 12 Scottish Championship and Palnackie Pursuit Race 2017


Caption: Rounding the gybe mark: Paul and Karen Brotherton (N2487) lead Gerald Copsey and Solway YC Cadet Bruce Coleman, with Ian & Margaret Purkis (N3384) about to round.

With a very welcome increase in visitors to Solway Yacht Club, Saturday dawned with the promise of strong winds but pretty good racing conditions. First timers in Kippford were Brian Herring and Ros Stevenson in their vintage Starfish N2345 “Bakewell Tart” and Paul and Karen Brotherton in their recently acquired vintage China Doll N2487 “Dolly Daydream”, previously one of Paul Turner’s collection. Unfortunately, just as the fleet were preparing to launch the wind strength increased markedly and several crews decided to delay going afloat, leaving it to Mark and Toby Simpson, Angus Beyts and local cadet Douglas Copeman and the Brothertons to make it to the start of Race 1.  All three races were dominated by Mark and Toby Simpson from Scaling Dam SC on day 1 with the Brotherton’s retiring from Race 1 while holding second, leaving Angus and Douglas to challenge the Simpsons. Despite the challenge being a rather distant one, they did get the lead at one point after the Simpson boat had capsized but it didn’t last and Mark and Toby recovered to win again. A very sociable evening in “The Mariner” over a meal and drinks concluded a windy day.


SolwayCaption: Heading up river back towards Kippford, heading for Palnackie early in the final race of the GUL Scottish N12 Championships


The popular, unique Palnackie Pursuit Race had been postponed by a fortnight given previous bad weather so a reduced Club fleet joined the National 12s. With the slower rated boats starting first it was a short sail out into the bay before turning up river, picking a course through the moored yachts then round the twists and turns, up the Devil’s Reach across the shallows and up to the turning mark just off the entrance to Palnackie Harbour before heading back to the finish. Solway YC member, Dewi Williams led off in his Mirror followed by the rest of the Club fleet before the National 12s, the last to start. Yet again it was the Simpson crew that took a narrow lead in the 12s but as the fleet bunched up in the light winds up-river, the Brotherton crew crept past and round the Palnackie harbour mark to win the 12s. The Simpson boat slipped further but just retained their second spot, just a boat’s length ahead of Gerald and young Bruce Copeman.


Caption: Palnackie Race against the tide: Paul and Karen Brotherton (N2487) lead Mark & Toby Simpson (N3472) and Gerald Copsey & Bruce Copeman, yet to reach the Palnackie Harbour turning mark. Meanwhile the leading Solway YC winning Mirror is already round the mark and heading down-tide in the Club Pursuit race.  

Prize-giving saw the magnificent Scottish Daily Express National 12 Championship Trophy, first presented in 1956 back almost in the hands of past winner Mark Simpson but this time with his enthusiastic son and crew Toby, trying to run off with it before being hauled back to get his Solway YC prizes to accompany it, along with the valuable GUL vouchers! Angus and Douglas won the Mariner Mug for the first Admirals Cup boat and second overall and their GUL vouchers with the prize-giving being rounded off by Angus presenting now well-worn “Ladybird Book of Sailing and Boating” to the unfortunate next holder, our Chairman Gerald Copsey on the grounds that he drove a round distance of 600 plus miles apparently just for a cup of coffee!



SolwayCaption: Complete contrast to the windier conditions offshore, the fleet heading up-river to Palnackie.


Scottish National 12 Championships results:

1st N3472 Mark & Toby Simpson, (Scaling Dam SC)
2nd N3231 Angus Beyts and Douglas Copeman, (Newburgh SC / Solway YC)
3rd N2487 Paul and Karen Brotherton, (Glossop SC)
4th N3411 Gerald Copsey and Bruce Copeman, (Ely SC / Solway YC)
5th N3384 Ian and Margaret Purkis (Solway YC)
6th N2345 Brian Herring and Ros Stevenson (Winsford Flash SC)



Ian Purkis
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