Celebration of the 12’ Cadet Dinghy.
This years bi-annual luncheon, ostensibly for members of 25 or more years standing, (but really for everyone) adopted the theme ‘Celebration of the Cadet’, to mark retirement of the 12ft Cadet Dinghy as the vessel for the Stonehaven Cup Competition.
Over 100 current and former RMYS Members gathered in the Harbour Room including 28 former Cadets, of which 7 were former Cadet Captains.
Such ‘Gatherings of the Clan’ are always an opportunity for mates to reminisce and attendees included 8, 50 year members the longest serving being Leo Perrini with 77 years. The ranking Commodore was Ted Montfort (1977-79) accompanied by 13 others past and present.
Past Commodore Doug Jenkin, (1979-81) a former cadet joined in October 1948. During an interview by son-in-law, Ben Solly about the Good Old Days he included details of the ‘safety test’ where prospective cadet sailors had to swim fully clothed from the outer landing to the beach. He did not mention what happened to those who did not make it.
Gary Simmons explained how learning to sail in Cadets had opened the door for him into national and international yachting including Americas Cups, the European and US circuit, not to mention multiple Sydney Hobarts, including on ‘Tina of Melbourne’ RMYS S3 which seemed to be wetter inside than out.
Martin Palfrey spoke of being thrown in the deep end as a skipper with limited helming experience. The result being winning the ‘bottling award’ in his first year. None the less the Cadet experience stood him in good stead for life.
Final speaker, Nelson Dean, held the audience with some of the back story behind skippering the winning RMYS Cadet ‘Mollie G’ during Stonehaven 2017. The result was so close that the two highest placed boats were even on points and the result was by count back.
After a toast to ‘The Cadet’ by Past Commodore Graham Burton, the formal part of the day concluded with a vote of thanks by Past Commodore Harry Leggett for GM Matt Solly, a former Cadet who acted as MC and organiser. Matt had obviously drawn on his many contacts to assemble such a gathering of both attendees and speakers.
So, in 2020 (maybe they should be annual) when Harry, Russell and David organise the next ‘25 year members’ lunch, make sure you are there to hear real RMYS history from those who helped create it.