I think it was Annie Meadows who first flagged this up in Facebook, that the Sailing Barge Association (link from this site) have now completed and published the results of the 2013 championship.
We did OK, coming 6th over all but, inevitably, could have done better, especially later in the season where I am told that some topmast rings (onto which are laced the tops’l) had become distorted in a bit of a blow during one of the charter trips and do not always slide up and down the topm’st properly, making it tricky to get a good ‘set’ on that sail. Excuses, excuses, I hear you say!
Whatever the case, the championship was won outright by Niagara with Edith May 2nd, both barges managing this by dint of scoring in every race bar one (the Passage Match for Niagara and the Blackwater for Edith May). Well done those crews and those barges! 3rd equal overall were Lady of the Lea and Repertor, with Edme 5th.
Our 6th was a score of 24 (Niagara had 40) , 6 from the Medway, 5 from the Passage, 5 from the Thames, 3 from the Swale and 5 from Southend.
Say the Sailing Barge Association, “Overall it was a good turnout at the Matches this year. 22 barges actively participated, with an average attendance of 10 barges per match and the 150th anniversary Mark Boyle Memorial Thames Match attracting an impressive 16 barges and other vessels following.”
Thank you to Annie and to the SBA and also to the racers themselves who give us such a cracking spectacle every year. I understand that the Thames Match may not happen in 2014 because in the absence of the late Mark ‘Nozz’ Boyle, there is not a viable committee, so if you know different and think you could take over the running of the Thames Match then please get in touch with the SBA.
Thanks too, to Susan Martin who took this lovely shot of Cambria doing her stuff in, I think, the Southend Match.