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Coronavirus and Model Yachting – Update 10

This week, both RYA Scotland and RYA Northern Ireland updated their Covid roadmaps relating to easing lockdown restrictions. These have been reviewed to support clubs in the MYA Scottish District in planning their return to sailing activities. The roadmaps have been adapted for MYA club activities and are now available for MYA clubs in Scotland and MYA clubs in Northern Ireland.

It is important to note that this guidance is expected to be revised and probably at short notice.  Further alterations to Levels will be dependent on local suppression of the virus. It is possible for these levels to vary across Local Authorities and some may even return to higher level restrictions.

The information within the guidance documents is tailored towards MYA affiliated clubs as well as individual members. It is designed to aid your decision-making process and planning, not replace it.

MYA Scottish District 2021 Racing Programme (provisional)

The provisional MYA SD 2021 Racing Programme (Rev 1) has been published.

It  takes a conservative approach incorporating the Scottish government’s “Timetable For Easing Coronavirus Restrictions”. It also acknowledges that Covid inoculations are proceeding quickly and infection rates are falling. Nevertheless, for obvious reasons, the programme is provisional and subject to change dependent on evolving COVID regulations as event planning proceeds. In addition, we must all accept that those events that do run may be in a modified manner to comply with the prevailing guidance and advice. Finally, of course, there is the usual challenge of weed!

Club secretaries are invited to inform Brian Summers (MYA SD Racing Secretary) of any open club events they plan. These can then be added to the provisional MYA SD Racing Programme to advertise the event. As we prepare to Return to Boating, club committees should review the club’s Covid Risk Assessments for your venue and share the information with your members.

Coronavirus and Model Yachting – Update 9

RYA NI has not changed its advice.

Currently, mainland Scotland, Skye and the Western Isles are in Level 4 Stay at Home. RYA Scotland has updated its advice (click here) in response to Scottish government announcements effective 12th March 2021.

To quote RYA Scotland, “It is still possible to go boating as a form of exercise, following the outdoor gathering rules, but we remind everyone that that we are in the grip of a pandemic and any activity should be conservative of risk. The overriding message for Scotland’s boating community is to ‘Stay at Home’ wherever possible and we must all do our bit to stop the spread of the virus.”

New Club in the Scottish District – Welcome Wick Model Yacht Club

We are pleased to announce a new MYA Member Club in the Scottish District. Wick Model Yacht Club (WMYC) currently has twelve MYA members including four junior members.

It is noteworthy that WMYC is now the MYA’s most northerly club! Their sailing venue is Sarclet Loch near Wick which is a natural loch about 3/4 mile long. The Club Representative for the MYA is Graham Robertson and his contact details can be found on the Clubs page.

Wick Model Yacht Club has been running in its current form since 1926. They free sail two classes of yachts (4ft and 5ft) of which the rules are specific to the club. Most of the yachts sailed have a fixed skeg, i.e. no steering control, no vane or Braine gear. The yachts are adjusted by the sails only. They have an excellent website which is worth visiting.

Welcome aboard!

Coronavirus and Model Yachting – Update No 8

In response to the identification of a new Covid-19 variant and rising infection rates, the Scottish government updated their Covid-19 website advice on 19th December and the Northern Ireland government on 31st December 2020. Links to the relevant government documents are included in MYA Scottish District – COVID-19 Information Update (2020-12a).

Please note that as of 31st December 2020, the RYA websites for Scotland and Northern Ireland have not been updated. Thus, the purpose of this document is to provide information only. MYA affiliated clubs and members are advised to familiarise themselves with the prevailing government regulations to make informed decisions about their activities.

Coronavirus and Model Yachting – Update No 7

The attached guidance MYA Scottish District – Guidance for Return to Competitive Sailing (2020-12) dated 17th December 2020 is intended for club sailing and open events including MYA Scottish District Traveller Series and Championships.

Cognisance should also be taken of any local restrictions/lockdown. The introduction of Protection Levels applicable to local authority areas is now well established as is the guidance regarding travel between these areas. To check what level of measures apply in your area or venue where you intend to participate in activity, please check the postcode on the Government webpage.

Coronavirus and Model Yachting – Update No 6

The MYA Scottish District covers the geographic areas of Scotland and Northern Ireland. Different government regulations and guidance apply in these countries. Updated guidance has been compiled in liaison with the RYA. The document “MYA Scottish District – Guidance for Return to Competitive Sailing (2020-10)” reflects the regulations and guidance as of 9th November 2020 in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Contained in the document are links to relevant websites and documents.

It is the responsibility of each participant (club and individual) to apply the government’s rules and guidelines. Participants should also assess their own risk and make their own decision whether or not to participate or continue to participate. It should also be noted that it may not be possible to implement the regulations and guidance at every venue where model yachting is enjoyed.

2020 MYA Scottish District IOM Wooden Hull Championship

The 2020 MYA Scottish District IOM Wooden Hull Championship was held on Wednesday the 7th October 2020 hosted by Tayside Radio Sailing Club at Forfar Loch, the home of Forfar Sailing Club. The event had been postponed from the previous Saturday due to an amber weather warning for extremely heavy rain (a month’s rain in 2 days), bad road conditions with flooding and a very light (almost non-existent) northerly wind.

A consequence of the torrential rain was it had raised the water level by almost a meter and hence the launching jetties were completely covered in water. A portable jetty was deployed to make launch and recovery possible without getting wet feet albeit with one person on it at a time. (NB Learning: securely tie the jetty to the bank … it started floating away with a skipper on board!) The low autumnal sun was very welcome although the bright reflection off the water was frequently another challenge for skippers.

As in previous years the event attracted a good number of Scottish-based skippers with their beautifully home-built wood planked IOMs, some by recognised designers and others self-designed.

The racing was run under the MYA Scottish District COVID-19  ‘field of play bubble’ protocol with the skippers standing at markers 3m apart and the race team 3m behind them.

Although standing in one spot does bring its own challenges with the boats further away than normal at times, it does allow events and club sailing to take place during these times of restrictions.

The racing commenced at 10.00 in a moderate westerly with all skippers choosing their A rig. As per the forecast, after a couple of races the wind increased to the top of A rig testing both heavy weather sailing skills and rig strength. Consequently, everyone changed down to B rig which they stayed with for the remaining races. Forfar Loch lived up to its reputation for providing top class sailing conditions with its wide open waters giving close racing in a true breeze and big waves.

Skippers enjoyed boats moving very quickly in the strong wind and trying to make fine judgements whilst dealing with the low sun reflecting off the water and having to stand in one place when the boats were quite distant. However, wind shifts were there to use as well. Most skippers had some issues to overcome and in a very competitive fleet it was difficult to come back from even the smallest mistake. All of these factors made for a great day’s sailing.

Ian Dundas sailing his new Corbie 6 (Sail # 38) came out on top as a worthy winner after 17 races by a single point from Tich Summers sailing his self-designed Buzz 3 (Sail # 07). Similarly, there was a tight finish with a single point separating third place (Richard Rowan sailing an Alternative, Sail # 85) and fourth (John Owens sailing a Corbie 5, Sail # 33).

Credit must go to the race team led by RO Boyd Baird for running a first class event and making the bold decision to postpone until a date when the forecast was already known to be perfect for radio sailing.

(Report: Brian Summers, Photos: Brian Summers/David Williams)

Results

Not the 2020 MYA Scottish District IOM Championship!

Six skippers arrived at Forfar Loch on 19th September for the 2020 MYA Scottish District IOM Championship. Initially, we were met with a very atmospheric scene of a mist that made it look as if the loch was gently steaming.

 

Following skippers checking into the “field of play bubble”, boats were weighed and their certificates checked. Markers had been laid-out at 3m spacing for skippers to place their deck chairs and help maintain the minimum 2m social distance spacing. The skipper’s briefing was held at 09:45 which included a brief reminder of Covid-19 protocols.

It was then a case of waiting for the mist to burn off and a breeze to appear. The former did and the latter did not! During the waiting the opportunity was taken to present the Sir Thomas Lipton Cup to Ian Dundas as the winner of the 2019 MYA Scottish District IOM Travellers Series.

Following sorting-out of many current societal challenges in the very warm sunshine, we took an early lunch and agreed to make a go-no go decision at 13:00. At that time some movement of air kicked-in (wishfully termed a sea breeze) and a “practice race” was completed. Given the extremely light airs, large holes and direction swings, it was decided to postpone the Championship (date to be confirmed). We packed-up and went home with more of a sun tan and having enjoyed meeting-up with some of our sailing pals.

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