Crews and local organisers on the steps of Orkney Sailing Club after the prize giving

Crews and local organisers on the steps of Orkney Sailing Club after the prize giving


Download the full results here: Orkney2015 Results Final

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The Commodore’s Blog entries for the period of the Orkney Race are consolidated here.

The photos Hillary took at the prize giving are all in a dropbox folder. (When you click on the link you may be faced with a drop-box sign-up/log-in screen – close this by clicking on the cross top right and you will then be able to browse and download the photos.) These photos may be used freely by race participants and their clubs – please acknowledge “photo by Hillary Sillitto”.

Peak Flow was the first (and only) RFYC boat, so we get the Viking Cup which is the nicest of the lot.  Everyone had long spells of no wind and most of them were being pushed around by the current off Peterhead as well as on the approach to the finish line.


Hillary Sillitto with the Longship Trophy for the fastest RFYC boat on handicap

Arrivals on pontoons at Orkney Marina …


Panache (Orkney Sailing Club) on the pontoon

Yesnaby & Countess Linda




Rockhopper on pontoons at Orkney Marina


Peak Flow on pontoons at Orkney Marina

This page has been regularly updated with news of the Orkney Race.

The Fisherrow boats have been tracked and you can see how they progressed from this link:  Rockhopper and Countess Linda.  You may find that it asks you  to log into your Gmail account if you have one,  but it does take you to the chart of their progress.

Sunday 14:45 – report from the race organiser:

At 14.20hrs I am still waiting to hear from Countess Linda. However, as I write they have called me, they finished around 14.00hrs.

I spent yesterday evening on board Erin, the owner John Murphy is famed for his hospitality, I had the head this morning to prove it!

I was down to the marina this morning and spoke to all the skippers and crews from the boats that finished this morning. They were all pretty damp after the heavy rain that has been falling in Orkney since the early hours of the morning. It was amazing how upbeat they all were after such a hard and at times what must have been a very frustrating trip. It is great that they all stuck at it and finished.

They all had tales of differing wind conditions and boats passing and being re-passed. It would appear for much of the race after Rattray Head, that the  boats were out of sight of each other for much of the time due to poor visibility and the various different course chosen to cross the Moray Firth. All spent some time, many hours in some cases, parked up waiting for wind. Panache reported that they dropped their sails completely three times because the lack of wind and rolling motion was likely to cause damage to them.

It would seem that most of the crews are spending the day chilling in and around Kirkwall. All will be trying to keep out of the heavy rain that is falling at the moment.

The results will be announced at the Prizegiving tomorrow night and there may be a few surprises in store.

Tom Wilson, Race Organiser

Log following from Hillary Sillitto – Peak Flow:

Sunday 21st June

06:53 Peak Flow finished the Orkney race at 06.53:36 today! Heading for Kirkwall and a well earned rest. We missed the tidal gate yesterday evening by about an hour due to two badly timed calm periods. Phew!

(Peak Flow) Approaching the finishing line at nearly 8 kt

(Peak Flow) Approaching the finishing line at nearly 8 kt

Thanks to all relatives,  friends and supporters. Hillary, Glen, Simon and Ben.

04:30 – An incredibly frustrating night. We lost the wind 16 miles from home and floated around in fog. Then there was a bit of wind and we made an attempt to get to the finishing line before the opposing tidal stream built up. Ben was doing tricks with a cruising chute we’d never seen before, but unfortunately he hit “the wall” and the wind died again. We managed to ferry glide into the shelter of Copinsay to avoid being taken half way back to Wick with the current, had a cup of tea and came out again as the wind picked up and the current died, to have a final exhilarating beat to the finish. By this time the two Orkney boats had overtaken us in the fog, and Rockhopper finished half an hour or so after us

Saturday 20th June

18:57 16 miles from finish line. In fog. Very light winds. Hope to get in sometime during the night.

Like all the boats, Peak Flow was becalmed for many hours overnight on Friday night/Saturday morning. Then the wind picked up with a light steady breeze from the SE and we had an 8 hour spinnaker run all the way across the mouth of the Moray Firth. We crossed the second reporting line, level with Wick, about 40 miles east of land and it was several hours before we could report in to the coastguard. Seems we were the first of the slow boats at this point.

Orkney 'Hen Night" an observation from our man on the bus, photo - Tom Wilson

Orkney ‘Hen Night” an observation from our man on the bus, photo – Tom Wilson

This is how the bride (& groom, usually a different day and not in the same pick-up though) is treated before she gets married. They go around the town for hours singing and whistling, all involved are covered in muck and paint.

Friday 19th June

17:41 Just passed reporting line off Peterhead at 57 deg 29 min north.  Wind headed us for a while but now back to F4 NNW.  Taking a reef in in anticipation of a long night.  Will be out of contact in a few hours as we go north from Kinnaird.

Peak Flow celebrating the first major milestone, the reporting line off Peterhead

Peak Flow celebrating the first major milestone, the reporting line off Peterhead, with an appropriate Orcadian libation.

15:16 Erin passed us off Aberdeen at 13:29. Interesting! Now 8.5nm from reporting line, about 3.5-4 KT SOG against close to 2kt current. Wind NNW f3-4, quite lumpy sea.

13:34 We are 19 miles from the reporting line at 57 deg 29 min, and gambling on the offshore route past Rattray Head to keep clear of the worst of the adverse tidal flow. Several of the fleet behind us. Slight drizzle, force 3 ish NNW.

11:15 Now off Aberdeen. The wind picked up from the NW and we had a three hour blast up the coast. Some rain, fortunately it was my turn to be resting below decks!

08.29 Whole fleet has been more or less becalmed around  Gourdon for last couple of hours. Hints of wind now.  Hope we start moving again soon, but we have had nearly 2 knots tidal assistance while the wind was having a rest.

06:15 Off Montrose. Wind dropping and veering to north. Most of fleet still in sight. One fast group boat had its spinnaker up for a while but was heading for Oslo so took it down.

Thursday 18th June

23:30 Most of the fleet is within a mile or two of North Carr buoy. In Peak Flow we are on a very comfortable beam reach at 6kt. The sea is much flatter now, we had significant waves on the downwind run.

18th June, 10:00 Three hours out, we are passing St Monans and Pittenweem. Hillary and the RFYC team on Peak Flow.

Orkney race 2015 (10 mins into race) - photo Hillary Sillitto

Orkney race 2015 (10 mins into race) – photo Hillary Sillitto

Orkney Race Start 2015 Division 2

Orkney Race Start 2015 Division 2  (Fast Handicap)                                                                                                          Erin – Sun Odyssey 49 – PEYC                                                                                                                                                     Yesnaby – Dufour 405 – PEYC

Orkney Race Start 2015 Division 1

Orkney Race Start 2015 Division 1  (Slow handicap)                                                                             Panache Seamaster 925 Orkney SC                                                                                                                  Nereides Seamaster 925 Orkney SC                                                                                                            Rockhopper Hunter 30 Fisherrow YC                                                                                                                                    Peak Flow Contessa 32 RFYC                                                                                                                                            Countess Linda Colvic Countess 28 Fisherrow YC

Spectators view of the start from the clubhouse... though binoculars!

Spectators view of the start from the clubhouse… though binoculars! – photo – Gavin Sillitto

Peak Flow - Hillary Sillito - photo Rona Sillito

Peak Flow Contessa 32 RFYC  – Hillary Sillitto – photo Rona Sillitto

Hillary has been updating our website for the last few months and has kindly agreed to keep us up to date with photographs and information from this years Orkney race.

Peak Flow leaving pontoons

Peak Flow leaving pontoons

Orkney race briefing

Orkney race briefing

The race start times were 19:00 (slow handicap) and 20:00 (fast handicap) on Thursday 18th June. The boats are expected to arrive in Kirkwall over the weekend.

The race covers a distance of about 205 miles and boats are then encouraged to meet up in Kirkwall.  A warm welcome awaits all those that take part and we are grateful to Orkney Sailing Club for their hospitality whilst we are there. Orkney Marinas Ltd are once again giving race entrants free berthing in Kirkwall Marina until Tuesday 23rd June. We are grateful to them for their help.

Some people choose to spend a few days in Orkney after the race, whilst others use it as part of a trip to the west coast.  In addition the St Magnus International Festival will be taking place from 19th – 24th June.

Some of the participating boats, including the two from Orkney, are now alongside on the pontoon.

Nereides II with visitors - photo Hillary Sillitto

Nereides II,  Orkney SC, with visitors – photo Hillary Sillitto


Panache, Orkney SC - photo Hillary Sillitto

Panache, Orkney SC and crew – photo Hillary Sillitto



Nereides II, Orkney SC, with Peak Flow (RFYC) in the background - photo Hillary Sillitto

Nereides II, Orkney SC, with Peak Flow (RFYC) in the background – photo Hillary Sillitto

Entries as at 12 June.
Fast Handicap

Erin – Sun Odyssey  49  – PEYC
Yesnaby – Dufour 405 –  PEYC
Cherubino – Half Tonner – RFYC – did not start

Slow handicap

Panache Seamaster 925 Orkney SC
Nereides Seamaster 925 Orkney SC
Rockhopper Hunter 30 Fisherrow YC
Peak Flow Contessa 32 RFYC
Countess Linda Colvic Countess 28 Fisherrow YC