July 07, 2008
Being a cautious sailor I tend to prefer to explore an area with someone who has already been there rather than doing it soley based on my reading of the Almanac and Pilot Books.
So in 2007 I signed up for a two week cruise with Ron MacInnes on his Sadler 36, Speedwell.
Ron normally runs a sailing school out of Ardrossan on the Clyde but likes to go up to the Western Isles in July with the aim of competing in the “West Highland Week” regatta.
So this is going to be a “Cruise with revision” for me and a “day skipper practical” course for the other four crew members.
I take a Ryan Air flight to Prestwick and Ron picks me up on his way down to the boat.
The other crew members turn up and we are ready to go.. Well we are ready but Speedwell isn’t quite, as Ron has a couple of maintenance tasks to finish off to get here ready for sea.
It is also blowing a bit so he decides to give us a demonstration of boat handling in the marina and it quickly becomes obvious that having had Speedwell for 25 years he knows exactly how she will behave in any situation.