To round off a rather sad year we heard that Brian Southcott died on Wednesday.
We saw him at John Harris' funeral where he spoke very eloquently, as ever.
He was in a wheel-chair, being pushed by Joan of course, when I spoke to him about going to Salcombe next year, he said rather poignantly that he didn't know if he would make it. I had no idea just how ill he was.
He was a very talented sailor and a very nice man.
There is an interesting piece about him on the Tamesis website: https://www.tamesisclub.co.uk/2018/12/20/brian-southcott/
Although almost my only experience of Brian was our annual interesting conversations on the beach at Salcombe, he took such an interest in my racing ever since my first week there in about 1981, particularly if it had been a light and sneaky day on the water, and was always most encouraging. A lovely man I shall miss next year. My condolences to Joan and the family.
Weve lost two of the best Merlin Rocket sailors of their times in just over one month. Very sad particularly for Tamesis Cub.
I can only echo Roberts thoughts. He was an amazing light weather sailor and I spent many hours trying to copy his technique, he just became part of the boat, whether Nat.12 or Merlin.
Very Sad - once again always had time for for a chat and a joke in Salcombe.
I was once sailing in the Bognor Barrel a very long ago - we were all drifting about in - as George Slack would say in 3/5ths of FA, but mostly from the NW making a beat / reach / run towards the finish line off the club.
Brian peeled off to the right towards the pier for about 400 yds. A new breeze came in from the NE and Brian cruised to victory.
I asked him how he knew the wind was going to change to his advantage and he said "have you noticed seagulls aways stand head to wind? I was looking around and the gulls all rotated 90degs "
Was he pulling my leg? Stuart
I don't think so Stuart.
We were doing well at one of the races at
Poole in 1964 and thought we might win our first Championship race
because Brian was some distance behind us.
In those days there was a high chimney close to Poole Harbour and perhaps two miles from the the race area. We were startled when Brian turned sharply to starboard behind us, unlike Brian we had not noticed that the smoke from the chimney had changed direction from west to north, Brian won the race easily!
Brian did not win that Championship but he did win three otthers,