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RS800 Northern Tour 2019 within Scottish and Northern Skiffs

by Mike Macmillan 18 Mar 08:32 PDT 1-2 June 2019
RS800 upwind - RS800 Northern Tour © Sailingfast

The RS800 fleet is having way too much fun and it is time to ensure the Northern boats don't miss out on the fantastic racing this class has to offer.

The Scottish and Northern Skiffs Circuit has remained strong and in recent years has had a resurgence with a focus on including skiffs on a PY basis for top quality handicap racing.

With these two facts in mind an RS800 Northern Tour of two events offering RS800 fleet racing embedded within the Scottish and Northern Skiff circuit has been created. Both events are to count.

RS800 Northern Tour 2019

Two events. Both to count. Brand new RS800 Northern Tour trophy up for grabs!

    1. East Lothian YC 1-2 June
    2. Sunderland YC 24-26 Aug
East Lothian Yacht Club 1-2 June

Located at North Berwick this venue has been a favourite of the Scottish Skiff circuit for years offering true championship conditions. Out on the open sea with plenty of space for the skiffs to stretch their legs and waves to die for it is no surprise the Scottish and Northern Skiff circuit has chosen this event as the Scottish and Northern Skiff Championships. These facts mean there should be a cracking turn out so we can expect good numbers and high quality handicap racing with the RS800 fleet also battling it out within for their fleet prize.

There are other similar quality venues on the Scottish and Northern Skiff circuit this year however this venue is also far enough South (being just East of Edinburgh) to entice those Northern boats up from England. The club does cap numbers of boats for open events so it is vital to put this event in your diaries and get booked. The entry form can be found on the club website elyc.org.uk

Sunderland Yacht Club 24-26 August

The second event of the RS800 tour is the Boatman Bonanza at Sunderland Yacht Club. The Scottish and Northern Skiffs will be attending this event that has been created to celebrate the life of Martin Boatman who passed away in January. The venue is fantastic and has hosted several championships including the Musto Skiff Nationals. A big fleet is expected and onshore there will be a real family atmosphere with family games while the boats are racing and a live band for a large evening party. Camping is free at the club and proceeds from the event will be going to charity. Details can be found at the following pages: www.facebook.com/events/1143299689185588 or www.sunderlandyachtclub.co.uk

Scottish and Northern Skiff PY Circuit 2019

However there is no reason for the fun to be confined to these two events with a packed Scottish and Northern Skiff circuit offering amazing venues and high quality racing. The circuit was created between two and three decades ago and its design has proven to be way ahead of its time. Large numbers of skiffs enjoyed the high quality handicap racing and the fleet racing within. For a while the Musto Skiffs were solely responsible for ensuring the circuit continued but recently there has been an increased focus in ensuring other boats engage again, thus increasing fleet sizes. The model is one that has seen similar success in the Selden SailJuice winter series and is now being rolled out in a similar form as the Great British Sailing Challenge.

Scottish and Northern Skiff PY circuit dates 2019:

  • 6-7 April Yorkshire Dales SC
  • 20-21 April Ullswater YC
  • 1-2 June East Lothian YC (Scottish Skiff National Championship, EuroCup Event)
  • 29-30 June Largo Bay YC
  • 3-4 August Chanonry SC
  • 24-26 Aug Sunderland YC (GBR Event)
  • An October event is to be confirmed

The RS800 is a great choice for double handed teams to take part in the circuit. The fleet offers a truly varied group of participants with masters, youths, and mixed teams all finishing in high positions at the nationals last year. Such variety of competitors was continued right through the fleet. The move to off boom sheeting has seen an increase in youth participation with teams choosing to come into the RS800 from a 29er. The fact that second hand boats remain competitive and are incredibly affordable with an amazing quality of older boats that you can purchase for your money, makes it possible to enter the class and take part to a high level quite easily.

In addition the main circuit remains an exciting mix of high quality racing and fun off the water, with good numbers attending and top quality events, including a European circuit with venues such as Garda. The fleet is extremely welcoming with an active facebook page where specific questions are often answered rapidly, video aids are posted, and literature including tuning guides is also provided free of charge from the class association. This makes it possible to ensure you get up to speed relatively quickly.

This year is the 20th anniversary of the RS800s and promises to be an exciting mix of the usual high quality racing and some extra big parties. Whilst the Northern Tour will offer us a chance to build a fleet higher up the country, the appeal of an occasional adventure down South may also prove too appealing to miss!

Find all the RS800 events and information on the website here: rs800.org

Any questions ask UK RS800 Class Association Secretary Clare Sargent on

Join in the chat on the RS800 facebook group. RS800 20th anniversary special edition t-shirt available to buy here.

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