Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Scottish Coastal Rowing Project: Coigach and Ullapool launch, and have at it

Ulla, the Ullapool boat was launched without ceremony on Friday, May 21


Adrian Morgan, a local boatbuilder and well known ex boating journalist, standing, lent a guiding hand to the builders of Ulla, led by Topher Dawson

In this photo, as ell as the two preceding, one can see the
the Viking style steering board, like a paddle, used by Ulla to eliminate problems with a rudder. It's a bit of an experiment, and we'll see how it performs. A full exposition of this steering method and the rationale behind it can be found here

Putting their backs into it on Loch Broom

Loch Broom

Lesley Muir, on of the moving forces behind Achiltibuie's Coigach Lass, proudly display's the wax model which will be cast in bronze and become the Lass' figurehead.

The Lass being carried down the ramp at Old Dornie for splash.

Lass' sea trials

Ulla rowed over for the ceremony from Loch Broom,

and of course, an informal match race began!

The Lass pulls ahead

Coigach Lass raced with five other boats at Anstruther this weekend with an all women crew, all over 40. They didn't win the race but won something more precious.

this photo courtesy P Nisbet/Coigach Lass

all other photos courtesy Chris Perkins

The Scottish Coastal Rowing Project is very healthy and rowing into it's first sanctioned races. The Ullapool boat splashed unceremoniously on Friday, May 21, and the Coigach Lass to somewhat greater ceremony (pipes) on Saturday, May 22. A cordial crew from Loch Broom rowed over to share the moment for Coigach, and naturally, a match race was soon underway. It's enlightening to read the teams respective blogs of what ensued. According to Coigach, they won the match hands down, but the Ullapool site has it that out of deference to Coigach Lass on her splash day, they 'allowed' her to pull ahead. H'mmm.
In any event, the first full regatta took place on Saturday, May 29, in Anstruther with six boats/teams attending. More here...

I've been following this project from it's inception last fall and am highly impressed with the vitality, industry and eagerness of the participants, really a remarkable phenomenom. It would be especially nice to see this Scots bred concept travel round the world, and invovle communities from other cultures building their own historically indigenous craft as a mirror to this Scottish idea.

The boats used by the various communties are all built to Iain Oughtreds St. Ayles design and kits are available through Alec Jordan.
Visit the Coigach Lass.
Visit Ulla.
VisitThe Scottish Coastal Rowing Project.

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