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Yorkshire Ouse open meeting & 1938 race

Yorkshire Ouse SC celebrates and sails on with the Club’s 80th Anniversary Festival of Sailing!

With the 75th anniversary apparently a recent memory, it’s hard to believe YOSC has now reached 80 years since its founding in 1938. A change from past practice brought the “Carr Enterprise Trophy” Open and the “Naburn Paddle” National 12 Open to the same weekend, with the Ents on Saturday and the N12s on Sunday but, on Saturday evening, they joined together, along with several others, in the second running of the 1938 Race. This year it was an 80 minute pursuit race, starting at 1818 and ending appropriately at 1938!

The 1938 Race

After much computing time (trying to find the “on” button), Race Officer and handicapper Ian Purkis published the eagerly awaited start times: this year boat age, helm age, distance travelled and applying the ABBA formula (Any Body But Axford*!) all were taken into account. With the Kerslake N12 Tigress still “caged up”, it was National 12 sailors Steve Kerslake and young Alexander Phillips who led off as scratch boats in a pair of singlehanded Hartley 12s.

Next up was N2153 with Angus Beyts and crew Emily Overend giving chase before the rest got to their start times. Last to start, Philip David and crew Fiona Philips misjudged their final beer while awaiting their time, missing their start by a country mile. Meanwhile Angus and Emily were up to second chasing Steve in the distant Hartley (we’d almost forgotten what a good sailor he is!). Tim and young Christopher Hampshire were going well until a pit stop was required after Tim had quite correctly been ordered by his crew to go and put his buoyancy aid on! Meanwhile the leading Ent of Larry Gray and crew Steve Axford (apparently hiding under the foredeck trying to avoid the ABBA formula) were going steadily in 4th. At the 60 minute mark, and still distant last, Philip David, was heard to say “plenty of time yet” and despite their pit stop, the Hampshire father and son emerged as the most likely to catch the flying Kerslake. But it was not to be, Steve led from start to finish still more than 50 yards ahead of the Hampshires. Consolation for Phil and Fiona? They finally made it to last but one!

Prize-giving and large 1938 cash prizes were awarded; half a crown to Steve Kerslake and one shilling to each of the Hampshires with a lucky sixpence to everyone less than half the Club’s age. A special prize went to Larry Gray, the one competitor who it was realised was conceived the year YOSC was founded but this left Brian Herring somewhat miffed as he claimed he’d been there at the time (when the Club was founded of course!) With the rain holding off just long enough for a rather good BBQ, it was time for the 1938 quiz compiled by Club Treasurer Fran Hyett and Social Secretary Carol Proud. This highlighted just what a momentous year it was with massive historical events taking place such as the founding of a quirky little sailing club on the Yorkshire Ouse!

* Steve Axford, YOSC Commodore and multiple Club Enterprise series winner!

The Naburn Paddle 2018

With the promise of some better wind than the previous day’s events, a good turnout of National 12s filled both the slipway and Ferry Lane, even spilling out into the village. This year the event was part of the YOSC 80th Anniversary Festival of Sailing and included the ANEYC Trophy as well as the Jubilee Cup, the separate trophy for Race 1. Welcome newcomers to the YOSC National 12 fleet were Larry Gray and his crew, Tina Beresford, a past Naburn Paddle winning crew, with Larry’s N1829 Battleaxe, a Proctor Mk 9. After the briefing by RO and YOSC Commodore, Steve Axford, “The Paddle” got underway, sailing a double-loop course up and down the river.

Philip David and crew Alexander Phillips immediately established what looked like a good lead in N3499 Out of the Blue, but half way up the second loop John and Alison Cheetham in N3209 Rebel caught and passed the much newer boat, holding their lead to the finish. Behind them Tim and Christopher Hampshire were going well in N3330, as was Patrick Hamilton and Gail Bilton in N3502 Carbonara. Of the strong vintage entry Vincent and Daniel Phillips N2531 Invasion led Brian Herring and Ros Stevenson in N2341 Bakewell Tart. Further back Ian and Margaret Purkis N1483 My Little Margie were having a very close race with Angus Beyts and Peter Rawson in the late Robin Steavenson’s famous 1966 Burton Cup winning N2153 Reflection, with Ian & Margaret coming out just in front on the line. It was particularly special to have Reflection back at Naburn. Robin Steavenson had been a YOSC member, a past National Champion and multiple winner of the Naburn Paddle between 1957 and 1973.

Race 2 and a complete change; the Cheethams were nowhere to be seen having a poor race, but with an otherwise familiar pattern at the front. Sadly, Larry Gray’s rudder in N1829 broke in the closing stages and was to put him out of the final race, but, nevertheless, a good start for only his second sail in a N12.

Race 3 became the decider, with everything to sail for. With several non-starters, and a simplified two lap up and downstream course, it was the Phillips who set off with a great start, but lurking at the back of the fleet, Ian & Margaret Purkis weren’t far behind. It was nip and tuck between Philip & Alex and the Cheethams, who found that vital gust to push them into the lead for rounding the downwind mark. Unfortunately, Philip carried too much speed as he rounded, so touched them and had to take a penalty. Then in lap 2, with the leaders all bunched up in a windless patch, Ian & Margaret found the wind and to their, and everyone else’s astonishment, sailed past almost the whole fleet up to second, but it didn’t last. Sadly, Tim and Christopher got the final leeward mark wrong and slipped back but it was the Cheethams, making good progress and finding their Race 1 form again that got the result and were popular winners of The Naburn Paddle, the ANEYC Trophy and the Jubilee Cup. The Phillips family took the vintage honours and the Transom Trophy, concluding a great weekend of river sailing

1938 Race

Angus Beyts and Emily Overend N2153 Reflection, lead Brian Herring and Ros Stevenson N2345 round the leeward mark

1938 Race

How it looked in 1967

Robin Steavenson sailing YOSC Easter Trophy 1967 “Reflection” YOSC Easter Trophy 1967



Overall results>

1st N3209 Rebel John and Alison Cheetham

2nd N3499 Out of the Blue Philip David and Alexander Phillips

3rd N3330 Pipperoo Tim & Christopher Hampshire

4th N3502 Carbonara Patrick Hamilton and Gail Bilton

5th N2531 Invasion 11 Vincent and Daniel/Fiona Phillips

6th N2345 Bakewell Tart Brian Herring & Ros Stevenson

7th N1483 My Little Margie Ian & Margaret Purkis