Jester Medal 2006
Jester Medal - for an outstanding contribution to the art of single-handed sailing.
Mervyn Wheatley is a terrific singlehanded sailor and has taken part in many OSTARs and AZABs with creditable results. This is mainly due to his cruising ethic rather than any race-track prowess. He sails his Formosa 42 Tamarind in a thoroughly seamanlike way to finish without major breakages – which is more than can be said of some of the Grand Prix sailors!
Roger Taylor sailed his engineless, junk-rigged Corribee MingMing fromScotlandto theArctic, and describes his adventures with video and words on his website www.thesimplesailor.com. Roger’s passion for basic and simple sailing is fascinating, and his stories make for great reading. My favourite is when he lost his drogue through chafe and decided to improvise with a B&Q sandbag sea anchor. He told me afterwards that Travis Perkins bags are far superior! Roger’s first book, Voyages of a Simple Sailor, is reviewed in Flying Fish 2010/1.
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, CBE (Suhaili & Saga Insurance )– see OCC Award of Merit,
Pete Hill (Shanti - Kingfisher 22) – for an outstanding achievement in single-handedly completing the Jester Challenge (2006) from Plymouth to Newport, Rhode Island with the assistance of an Haslar wind vane steering gear in just over 44 days. His achievement in his little 19 year-old Kingfisher 22 is all the more remarkable as the boat was probably the oldest and smallest of all the entrants, most of whom retired for various reasons so that Pete was the second and last boat to reach Newport.
During the previous 6 months he had also delivered the junk rigged 38’ catamaran he designed and built, from Brazil to Tasmania using his own design of wind vane steering, non-stop via the Southern Ocean.