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Changes to Vintage Classification for the National Solo and a New Classic Tour

by Will Loy 22 Jan 00:11 PST
Bob Taylor at the Chew Valley Solo open © Errol Edwards

The NSCA are launching a 'Classic Tour' for 2020 which is open to any National Solo other than those built in FRP from the year 2000.

The Committee recognise that there are many, mainly wooden, classically constructed Solos racing at club level who do not currently travel to NSCA organised events and do not fall into the 20 year Vintage classification.

From January 2020 the Vintage classification will be as follows: "Vintage" is any Solo over 20 years old on 1st Jan 2020. FRP/composite from 2000 not permitted. This is a rolling 20 year system.

Cheap entry into the class

The second hand market provides those wishing to move into the class on a limited budget with some lovely competitive examples so a series of events which includes some smaller open meetings and incorporate some of our more popular majors will allow a platform for the new and existing Solo owners to improve, progress while meeting like minded Solo sailors.

Don't be intimidated

Where possible, and if numbers allow, there will be a separate start at the major events, feedback suggests starting in a line with 50-60 other Solos can be daunting and having been T boned at one event I can understand how some may be protective of their beautiful Gosling built examples (other builders are available). Hopefully there will be a healthy response to this initiative to get Solos on the water, whether old or new.

Where the fleets will race under one start, separate results will be extrapolated for the overall position.

Go online, let's talk about it

Ideally, we will be very actively asking those interested in attending to demonstrate by responding to an event forum posting prior to each event to generate interest and attendance.

We also hope to run some impromptu tuning clinics pre race from some of our top helms so you can get the most out of your Solo, whether it is a 10 year old wooden built Thresher or a lovingly restored 30 year old Stone.

Chris Brown at CB Cover store has very generously sponsored the series for 2020 with an overall winners package of CB Cover store top and bottom covers.

At each event there will be individual prizes for first Classic/Vintage Solo, individual event sponsor Fernhurst Books are generously providing some of their excellent publications to help you improve your sailing.

Our other sponsors are: Fernhurst Books,

CB Cover Store Classic Tour 2020
Broadwater Open Meeting, March 8th TV P&B No separate start
Spring Championship, Draycote Water, April 25th Midland Fernhurst Books
Southern Area Championship, Lymington, May 16-17th South P&B
Vintage/Classic Championship Leigh on Sea, June 6th, TBC East P&B C2 Marine
Inland Championship, Grafham, July 11-12th Midland Gosling Dinghy Craft
Dittisham Open Meeting, July 18th West C2 Marine No separate start
(2 from 6 to qualify)

Our sponsors

Chris Brown owns CB Cover Store and is always available to chat about your requirements, he is also usually at the front of the fleet and is tempted to buy a 'Classic' himself.

Fernhurst Books will be providing some of their fantastically useful and informative sailing books at two of the events, thanks to Jeremy Atkins who has a long history of sailing Solos.

Kevin Gosling at Gosling Dinghy Craft, long time supporter of the Classic Solo has very generously donated a foil and, if he has time, a matching super light rudder stock for the lucky winner of the Inland Championship event

Mike Commander at C2 Marine will provide a Carbon Nitestick extension for one lucky winner. The Nitestick is the go-to tiller extension for many classes, virtually unbreakable and the thicker diameter provides superlative grip when you need it.

P&B are long time supporters of the NSCA and will be providing some of their great sailing kit. Ian Pinnell also worked with Fernhurst Books to help create their book 'Tuning to Win' which heavily features the Solo rig. P&B jockey Oliver Davenport is seen at most of the big events and is always available to chat about how you can get the most from your Solo, whatever the age.

Comment from NSCA President Doug Latta

"While we compete in the Super Series largely amongst shiny new FRP Solos, your eye is inevitably drawn to any of the beautiful wooden boats in the fleet. The sheer elegance and craftsmanship of these boats is really a sight to behold. Up and down the country at Club level, wooden and composite boats make up a proportion of the boats being sailed. The majority of these boats do not attend the National circuit, but the NSCA are keen to engage with the sailors of these wonderful boats, and under Will Loy's ever supportive care, we have created the 2020 Classic Tour.

"While not primarily aimed at the largest of our planned events, the Tour does take in two of the National events, but in these cases will offer a separate start for 'Classic' Solos. Additionally there are Classic events in the West, East, South, Thames Valley and Midlands - which we hope to expand to other regions in future years. The Tour includes the Vintage / Classic Championships, this year in it's third edition at the ever friendly Leigh-on-Sea. As well as attracting the wooden boat enthusiasts, buying an older wooden boat is an excellent way to get into sailing a Solo, at a very affordable price, and we really look forward to welcoming as many people from as many clubs as possible to join in the fun. I hope to borrow a boat myself to join one or two of the events! Happy Sailing!"

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