It is with great pleasure that I can inform you about the launch of our brand new No.6 racing mark dedicated to our dear departed Bosun John Rolfe. This seems a very fitting time considering the anniversary of his death coming around soon on the 13th September this year.

This has been a joint effort by many members of the club, race committee and volunteers and has been an on-going project since January this year.

A HUGE thank you to everybody involved.

The buoy is now placed centrally between a straight line through No.1 and No.3 and another line between No.2 and No.4 in the following position in about 10m (MLWS) chart datum depth.

050 degrees 47.411 minutes North
000 degrees 06.731 minutes West

(138ft from its proposed position which is quite good when you consider the near spring tide running during the drop)

The anchor consists of two huge tractor tyres (supplied by Graham Allan – Jeneral Lee – thank you Graham) filled diligently with concrete, chain and various dead weights mixed by hand and filled by racing rear commodore Peter Dillaway-Thompson (thanks Pete). A back breaking job for the fittest of athletes!

The sinker weighs in at well over one tonne and I enclose some photos of the beast being launched.

The majority of the chain used was generously donated by Peter Van De Boon from the diving section (thanks Peter).

I have spent the last two days gathering it all together and rustling up a portable compressor, a five tonne lifting bag, shackles, swivels and rope and putting it together ready for it’s launch yesterday.

Colin Foxley generously donated the use of his very impressive RIB called “Tug 1” without which this exercise would not have been completed, and he towed the sinker and buoy out with great competence to the drop site against a strong cross tide and choppy waters. Thanks a million Colin.

Through Colin Foxley, we also had help from Lee and James Lidbetter (local experienced roofers Black Rock Asphalt), both exceptionally nice guys and very experienced diving instructors who not only helped get the sinker and buoy out there, they also dived on the mark the following day to retrieve the floatation bag and a very expensive remote detachment block which didn’t perform as promised (hence the dive requirement). They went down together and retrieved the bag in less than 10 minutes from entering the water to being back on the boat and it was all very impressive. Thanks a million Lee and James.

A big thank you to Matthew Holmes also has to be included as he was the only volunteer from the club who came to my aid on the day. Matthew’s help on Wednesday was invaluable and I am very grateful to him.

Last and by no means least, a big thank you to all the marina boatyard staff who launched the buoy and sinker for us free of charge. Thanks guys …. Very much appreciated.

Anyway, I trust that you will all enjoy the new racing mark(s) together with the numerous options this mark now gives us for race course shapes and ranges. Please try not to scratch it and remember to say a little thank you to John Rolfe as you sail past the mark every week and remember him for everything he has done for the club during his lifetime. John’s input in the club was vastly under appreciated and I only understand this now that I am doing just a fraction of the things John used to do for us all.

Happy safe sailing to you all and I hope to see you down the club very soon.

With very best regards

Rob Mclean,
Race Capn, BMYC Race Committee

Published: September 2, 2011