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Club Newsletter 17th-July-2014

Ahoy Club Royalty
The most important subcommittee in the club met last night, and decided on a couple of critical pointers for the way in which its business will be conducted henceforth.
Gone are the days of the closed door meetings of the elected few. It has been decided, and rightly so, that all members of the club shall be members of this subcommittee and that meetings shall be open to all, based on a few ground rules:

  • Anyone caught without a beverage at hand shall be dealt with severely
  • Anyone who wishes to raise a point shall do so by ordering a round before proceeding.
  • No minutes or record shall be kept of any meeting, for reasons of safety and security.

You might have worked out by now, that we are talking about the Coastal Cruising Sub Committee, who have put together yet another fantastic cruise for this coming Sunday. The cruise takes the form of a fishing contest, supported by Seaport Supply, with a braai in the lee of Robben Island after tales are made, spells are broken and the one that you thought got away is bagged:- hook line and sinker. The order of the day is to gather at the club for breakfast, before using guile, hook and crook (on your yacht somewhere in the bay) to land or at least photograph (against a supplied measuring instrument) the catch of your day. Tag and release is perfectly acceptable. A meeting of the minds in the club after all is said and done on Sunday afternoon will round off the action, where your fishy stories can be shared. Recognition of noteworthy achievements will be shared at next week’s lucky draw evening.
On the matter future Coastal Cruising Sub Committee meetings, please feel welcome to attend. They will be held in the galley at the club on the Wednesday preceding every cruise – and cruise dates are clearly marked on the club calendar.
In other sailing news, the Kling Wines Double handed Series for July – December 2014 kicked off last Saturday with the biggest fleet for quite some time. 21 yachts enjoyed and completed in light westerly winds and benign conditions. There is a comprehensive race report here.
In addition to the RCYC Club Championship Series (comprising of Winter Series, The Overnight Race, Lufthansa Twilight Oct-Dec, Round Robben Island with Harken, Lufthansa Twilight Jan-Mar, and Summer Series) we are very pleased to announce the IRC Cape Summer Circuit. This will be a premier IRC Championship Series comprising of Spring Regatta, IRC VOR Invitational, Summer Regatta, Mid Summer Fling, and the Mykonos Offshore Regatta. The overall winners in each class stand in line to be awarded IRC Class Colours. The IRC class welcomes all comers to sail on the IRC rating system, and will make a concerted effort in the coming months to share information about the rating, the class, and the exciting and prestigious racing circuit.
CLUB NEWSLETTER 17th July 2014
To sign off, I’d like to remind you to send your current and favourite pictures of your yacht to for inclusion on a fresh fleet photo wall for the new sailing season, and to encourage you to get involved both on and off the water. Much of what we do is on a voluntary basis from members, and the more members who are willing to contribute, the easier it becomes. This includes bridge duty, laying and retrieving buoys, crew building, etc. All club members who are looking for a yacht upon which to sail or race, please let the sailing office know, and we will find options for you. The more sailors on the water the better!
Sail together!


We are saddened to hear of the passing of a really good man, friend and club stalwart, Keith Mattison. The sparkle of naughtiness in his eyes, the rhythm of life in his soul, the love of family and friends at the core, Keith lived life to the full and was a great friend to many of us. He introduced countless numbers of people to sailing, and delighted us with his fantastic contribution to music, and jazz in particular, at the club.
Keith sailed with us all in the double handed race just last Saturday. What a wonderful man, and a special friend of the club and so many of its members.
Keith has not been well in the last year, and he has now been released to breathe in the air freely again. To Ruth and all the family, kids, grand kids, we are thinking of you at this very sad time. I have no doubt that this club will have a magnificent send off for you – Love you Keith!



2.pngWe had a clear and warm winter’s day in Cape Town for our sail training last Saturday. Unfortunately it was the very first time in12 months that we didn’t have any wind. Not even the slightest breath of wind, just a little breath of nothing from NW, not enough to fill our sails.
After unsuccessfully looking for wind inside the harbour and outside in the bay, we decided to call it a day and went sightseeing with our 3 academy boats through the V&A. Some of our students have never seen the Waterfront from that angle and they truly enjoyed it.
Back at the mooring our Lipton team decided to wait for wind and to go out for another training session later. Howard and I decided to enter the Double Handed Race with two of our students.
Usually the sea breeze kicks in from 1pm on a clear day in winter. 21 shorthanded crewed boats found their way to the start line and our race officer Ron Keytel, with the help from Luke and Adrian, was able to drop 2 weather marks in a perfect position in front of Green Point, to keep us in the small wind band closer to land for a perfect windward leeward course.


3.png Before we got to the start line we had to rescue the Miura ‘Matador’. After getting their engine serviced, they found out that there was no engine oil put back in and they were drifting under sails slowly towards the harbour wall. Our little 5hp outboard engine pulled the 4ton Miura effortless outside the harbour and to the start line. I wonder what they will tell the mechanic who serviced the engine recently.
We got away to a clear start in the middle of the line and soon were fighting it out with the Class1 boats as we dropped all Class 2 boats quite quickly. In fact the start line was so square, you could have started from either end. The pin end was the shorter distance to the weather mark but the other end was in flat water, protected by the harbour wall. It’s not often that the fixed pin end and the mark on the harbour wall allow for an even start line.
Daphne Jacobs is usually on halyards and it was quite a challenge for her to trim and to do foredeck. This girl is not scared to get out of her comfort zone when it comes to sailing. As a young single mother she has the challenge to put food on the table every day and to raise her little daughter single handed. I really wonder how she finds the time to go sailing with the academy on a regular base. Because of her commitment to sailing and her performance orientated attitude, I really like to sail with her.
On the first beat we had to find the best trim on Mac a Tini. Since we have not been able to tweak the rig perfectly, she is not as good upwind as the other boats in our academy. As a further handicap we didn’t take the engine off the stern bracket, which can’t be fast either. Nevertheless, we found our groove after a couple of try and errors and were able to pull away from the other boats in our fleet.
I was explaining Daphne the importance to get the right leech tension in the light air. She was able to get the trim right very quickly, which was quite impressive. Most students don’t understand easily what it takes to adjust the sail trim for the different wind and sea conditions.
After the first round we were leading our class by half a leg and I was already worried if we might have sailed the wrong course, which is almost impossible if you only have to round two marks. We were only in touch with ‘Mwah’, a J111 and the leading boat of class1. Doug Alison and Steve Meek really had her flying, with perfect sail trim and nice angles up and down.
I was wondering why ‘Mwah’ in class1 and us in class2 were able to pull away from the fleet so easily. Most boats I have watched throughout the race had their sails trimmed in too hard and sailed to high. This is an absolute no go in light wind. You have to get your boat to target speed as quick as possible before you try to get height. A strapped boat in light wind is not sailing to optimum VMG. Most of our students who come from a dinghy background tend to sail too high in light breeze and don’t give the boat enough time for acceleration. This is always the first thing I try to explain and it often takes them quite long to understand.
In light wind a performance yacht will take up to 30 seconds to get on target upwind speed. On an older design boat like a L26 or a Miura, it can take up to 1 ½ minutes after a tack before you can start pointing high. Most helmsman and trimmers are not patient enough to let their boats reach target speed, trim on too early and in the process sail too high but too slow.
It’s so great to see that the Kling Double Handed series at our club is doing so well. When I was busy to revive the shorthanded sailing at the RCYC 5 years ago, Gordon Kling came to the rescue and started to sponsor the series. Good courses combined with the traditional sit together and a glass of sponsored wine proved to be a good recipe for success. Thanks to Luke, who took over to
drive the double handed sailing and of course to Gordon Kling, who is sponsoring the series since over 4 years already.
If you haven’t tried shorthanded sailing, you don’t know what you are missing. It is only you and your team mate sailing the boat. The best thing about that kind of sailing, you can’t solely blame your crew if the boat is not performing well. 50% is on you.
Unfortunately I was not able to join the table for the prize giving as I was the lucky one who was chosen to retrieve the laid marks in the bay. As a bonus on the way back to the harbour, Luke and I were treated with the biggest rising full moon I have seen for years. What a great ending to a great day of sailing at the RCYC.

4.png Coming back to the performance of our youngsters in the race: Daphne was performing so well on the foredeck and on the sail trim that we were able to win our class very comfortably. Howard Richman on JML1 took a more radical approach and handed over the helm to Wade Ashton. Wade only joined the academy recently and never helmed a L26 before. Guess what? They came second in our class.
Our kids in the RCYC Sailing Academy are often able to surprise me if they are given a chance to perform. I bet we will hear a lot more from Daphne & Wade in future.
And to all the double handed sailors in class 2. You don’t have to worry that the academy is intending to invade your series. Most of the time we will not be able to make the start if we have our usual sail training upfront. Instead of finding our occasional appearance intrusive, you should rather see it as a chance to lift up the level of competitive sailing in class 2.




RCYC Fishing Cruise – Sun 20th July
Sponsored by Seaport Supply
Click here for more info
Basic agenda for the weekend:

  • Breakfast at RCYC at +-8.30am
  • Short 5 min chat by SEA PORT guys
  • Leave moorings at say 10.30 to sail to wherever and fish to hearts content…..
  • Late Braai (anchorage TBC)

Apps & Instrumentation – Wed 23rd July
Join us for a presentation by Robert van Rooyen & William Crockett at 18:00
Christmas in July – Sat 26th July
Limited tickets are available. Book now to avoid disappointment.

Click here for more info.
Woman’s Day Cruise – Sat 26th July
Calling all boat owners to make their yachts available.

Click here for more details.
Lipton Challenge Cup – Fri 22nd – Fri 29th August
Entries close on Friday 25th July


Lufthansa are offering a discount voucher to all RCYC members. These vouchers entitle all members to R550 off their next flight booking with Lufthansa. (The discount applies to the actual fare; which excludes taxes and surcharges. Sometimes the fare is less than R550 so the maximum amount that can be redeemed is R550. All T&C’s are detailed further in the link below.)
How it works?
The voucher can be redeemed via this link – After completing your details, your unique voucher will be emailed to you.
The voucher can be redeemed between 01/06/2014 and 31/07/2014 and travel must be between 01/08/2014 and 31/01/2015.


Jan Clavaux was the lucky member drawn last Friday night in the Club 500! Unfortunately he was not here to collect his prize.
This Friday, 18th July, is the NEXT DRAW at R11, 500.00!!!!
You have to be physically present at the Club with your membership card at the time of the draw to claim your prize.

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Despite current debate and pending legal opinion sought by the Cape Town City on the use of e-cigarettes in public non-smoking areas, the RCYC management ask users of e-cigarettes to be guided and abide by the Clubs current smoking policies i.e. no smoking of e-cigarettes will be permitted in any area other than the designated smoking zones (smoking room and Club rear entrance).
Thanking all in advance for their understanding and support.
For more insight see –

NOTICE – RCYC Contractor SHEQ Requirements
Members and contractors are advised that the Club management will be strengthening RCYC’s Occupational Health and Safety policies throughout the business, with particular attention focussed towards the Outside House portfolio.
As such and in line with safety and security best practice, all contractors, RCYC Outside staff and tenant staff will be required to wear safety vests before entering the property as of 01 August 2014.
The vests will be categorized as follows:

  • RCYC Outside House Staff –
  • Orange
  • Action Yachting Workers – Blue
  • All other contractors – Green

All members are advised to inform their respective contractors/cleaners to have their vests worn before entering RCYC property. Failure to wear the required safety vests will result in access being denied.
RCYC will however have contractor vests available for daily hire, with a R50.00 deposit. Hired vest will be available for the month of August only, thereafter contractors will be obliged to supply their own vests.
For any queries contact either the Clubs GM or Marina Manager.


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