News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery : Vale Jim Vance, Life Member Yachting WA
Vale Jim Vance, Life Member Yachting WA

'1998 YWA President Don Nickels with Life Members Ron Douglas and Jim Vance.'       Click Here to view large photo

Jim Vance, Life Member of Yachting WA, Patron and Life Member of Perth Dinghy Sailing Club, ledgendary sailor, administrator and friend passed away after a long and fulfilling life on Sunday 25th May 2014. He will be honoured and remembered on Friday 6th June 2014 at Karrakatta Cemetery, Railway Road, Karrakatta at 1.30pm.

Jim started sailing in 1938 and became a legendary figure sailing 16’ and 14’ Skiffs. His contribution to the sport, both participation and administration, were recognised with his receipt of the Yachting Association of WA’s Life Membership Award in 1993. Jim actively retired in 1999 however he continued to avidly follow and support the sport.

Jim commenced his sailing career in the 1938/39 season at the Perth Dinghy Sailing Club on Riverside Drive, Crawley when with his brother Dave, they built their first 14ft dinghy Valiant, the first of a series of boat names starting with ‘V’.

At the outbreak of the World War II the brothers joined the Royal Australian Air Force and put their sailing activities on hold. Jim trained as a pilot in Australia and then served in England with Bomber Command on Lancasters.

Prior to returning from England, Jim had the opportunity of meeting two famous dinghy sailors; Uffa Fox (Boat designer and sailor) and Chris Ratsey (sailmaker and designer). Jim was greatly impressed by the International 14ft Dinghy and after the war the Vance brothers, by applying aviation principles, concentrated on reducing the weight of Valiant and introducing a high aspect ratio rig. These innovations were successful and Valiant won the 1950 State Title beating the redoubtable Scamp.

As the Perth Dinghy Sailing Club was languishing at that time, Jim was responsible for introducing a junior class to the club and this has largely been responsible for the growth of the Club over the years. At this time Jim obtained his Masters degree from the University of WA.

The Vance brothers then decided to try their hand at sailing 16’ Skiffs and joined the Mounts Bay Sailing Club. Up to that time the 16’ Skiffs were gaff rigged so they introduced a high aspect ratio Bermudan rig to their 16’ Skiff Vogue. This boat went on to win many races and was runner up to Jack Cassidy in the 1954 state title. Following this Jim and Dave returned to the 14ft Dinghy Class where they introduced the first moulded ply 14ft dinghy in WA. This type of construction provided a very lightweight hull and Ventura proved to be unbeatable with Jim winning a second state title in 1955. Their next moulded ply dinghy was Vie which Jim took to Sydney and was runner-up for the National Title to Syd Corser in 1958.

Jim then tried his hand at experimenting with the design of dinghy hulls. His first design used mono-hedron principles which gave a fast light weather performance but was not suitable for heavy weather. He then tried a radical scow design which showed some promise but had a tendency to nose dive which was terminal.

As the 14ft Dinghy Class had introduced two trapezes and as Jim, because of advancing years, did not fancy himself as a trapeze artist, he introduced the New Zealand based Javelin Class (also a 14 foot dinghy) to the Perth Dinghy Sailing Club. This Class proved very successful on the Swan River and Jim won the 1970 State Titles and the HMAS Perth Memorial Regatta in Verve with his son Tim as crew. Jim was a firm believer that there was a boat suited to everyone - he introduced his daughter Heather to sailing in the Moth Class. There is no shortage of sailing skill in the Vance family.

After Jim retired from competitive sailing he enjoyed recreational sailing on a Hobie Catarmaran and then in a Laser.

Jim was awarded Life Membership of Perth Dinghy Sailing Club in 1978 and was made Patron of the Club in 1986 and honour he greatly revered and appreciated.

For over thirty years Jim represented the Perth Dinghy Sailing Club and many Associations as Delegate to the Yachting Association of WA and Yachting WA as it was more latterly know. Jim’s Yachting WA swan song was on 26th August 2004 at the Annual General Meeting; he had attended regular meetings for over thirty years – this is no mean feat, particularly as Members Meetings were convened late in the evening and there was little incentive to venture out particularly in mid-winter, often in appalling weather.

In the year 2000 the Governor General of Australia awarded Jim an Australian Medal to commemorate his Australian Sporting Achievement including sport administration.

Jim has served his Club and the Yachting Community of Western Australia well for nearly half a century. In his recent years Jim has greatly enjoyed following the sailing careers of his son Tim, his nephew Greg and their children.

Jim did not restrict his interests to sailing but also enjoyed golf and bowls.

by Jenny Honeybun


Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

12:11 PM Mon 16 Jun 2014GMT

Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

News - USA and the World

International Moth Worlds: Rashley ahead as Aussies close in by Mark Jardine /,

ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship - Action commences July 23
International Moth Worlds - Mothballed on day 4 + Video
Spirits high as Team Alvimedica completes Transatlantic crossing
Gladwell's Line: A change of direction needed in the America's Cup *Feature
29er North American Championship - Day 1 in Kingston
Red Bull 49erFX: First look at the Olympic sailing venue at Rio
Fuerteventura Kiteboarding Grand Slam - Classic conditions on day 3
NYYC Race Week Part II images by Rolex/Daniel Forster
Drowning or electric shock? What you need to know to help save a life
BIC Techno 293 Worlds 2014 - Day 1
Six Metre European Championship - Blazing sunshine on opening day
National Sailing Hall of Fame to present Lifetime Achievement Award
International Moth Worlds: Greenhalgh and Rashley tied at the top
PWA Pozo World Cup - Fantastic finale determines winners
Six Metre Class British Open Championship - Llanoria and Valhalla win
Anna Tunnicliffe set to compete at the CrossFit Games
America's Cup: Oracle Team USA holds foiling camp at Wangi SC
Volvo Ocean Race: Abu Dhabi OR completes double Atlantic crossing
Volvo Ocean Race: Team SCA has a 'pull through day' off the Canaries
No tiller sailing - how to steer using just the sails + Video
International Moth Worlds: Three bullets in a row for Greenhalgh   
U.S. Junior Women’s Singlehanded Championship - Sophia Reineke wins   
BIC Techno 293 Worlds 2014 - Day 0 Opening   
Fuerteventura World Cup - Slalom action highlights day 2   
2014 Governor's Cup - Sam Gilmour of RFBYC victorious again   
Farr 40 West Coast Champ - Skipper Alberto Rossi leads Enfant Terrible   
Flying Dutchman World Championships - Magyars are the Masters   
Final day shakes up standings at Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek   
2014 -15 Volvo Ocean Race: Team Alvimedica pushing towards Southampton   
NYYC Race Week - Saving the best for last   
VX One North American Championship - Chris Alexander commands   
2014 Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek - Waiting game on Day 3   
International Moth Worlds: Thunderstorms delay racing on Day 1   
Fuerteventura World Cup - Impressive tricks on day 1   
2014 Governor's Cup - Two former winners in the finals   
America's Cup: Iain Murray explains reasons for Australian withdrawal *Feature   
Wilson and Roble remain number one match racers in U.S.   
2014 ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship - Set to start   
PWA Pozo World Cup - Moreno twins dominate home spot   
ISAF Youth Worlds - Record breaking regatta in Tavira + Video   

For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News  

Switch Default Region to:

Social Media





New Zealand

United Kingdom

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World






Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text


Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery


Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery





Privacy Policy



Cookie Policy



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT