Bart’s Bash 18th September 2016

The annual memorial race for Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson, Olympic Gold medallist for the GB team before his unfortunate death while practising for the 2012 Olympics, was sailed by teams from around the globe, all during the 24-hour time slot. 19 dinghies competed in Lyme Bay, a total of 29 sailors from LRSC.

A measured distance is sailed by all competitors, giving a club result but also an international placing for the thousands who take part.

Inconsistent, fickle winds gave Race Officer Ian Wallace a difficult task, sailors moving well and then almost becalmed by turns, but the Bash was enjoyed by the sailors as a welcome chance to support such a worthy cause by donations. Two of Lyme’s top crews failed to sail the correct course, but three young Oppie sailors taking part in a club event for the first time did well on handicap, Ed Stubbs at 7th, with Henry Birchall and Archie Sowerbutts at 12 and 13, in spite of having to keep going for over an hour to finish. Winners Dave Stubbs and Paul Aitken took the honours, with Colin Walters and young Simon Law the runners up. A nostalgic event for Colin who was a family friend of Andrew.

The club has been donated the buoyancy aid worn by Bart during his Olympic races, and this will be deep- framed and hung in the clubhouse with the names of the winners and highest- placed youth crew inscribed annually. Photos of Andrew when he visited the youth section to coach members and speak of his experiences are displayed alongside the buoyancy aid. Commodore Jerry Rook thanked Crispin Read-Wilson for the gift – Crispin was Andrew’s sailing coach at school.

There is a short delay while racing is completed in countries to the west of Britain, then the placings will be published and the amount collected for the Foundation announced.

Meanwhile, Lyme’s results are below: 1. Dave Stubbs and Paul Aitken, RS400 2. Colin Walters and Simon Law, Albacore 3 Andy Robinson, Solo 4. Simon Ransome Williams, Laser 3000 5. Maggie Dunn, RS Aero 6. Simon Clark, RS700 The morning continued with two further series races, with young Ed Stubbs beating Dave Guthrie into second place by 2 seconds on corrected time in the third of the day. Ed was rightly thrilled with such an excellent result, heading the fleet, with Henry also coming week up in 7th.


Light winds at the stw of Bart’s Bash


Ed Stubbs in. Puffin crosses his father Dave, left, the winner


Ed finishes the race, unsure of his position until coming ashore.