Gale-force winds forced organisers to cancel racing but celebrations continued ashore

influential yacht designer David Thomas was celebrated in style at a Royal
Southern Yacht Club dinner packed with family, friends and many of those who
have taken to the water in one of his boats. 

A ferocious forecast put paid to any chance of racing in the David
Thomas regatta at the weekend, but participants still enjoyed an evening of entertainment.

was lauded by numerous speakers for the pleasure his many and various designs
have provided over a career spanning half a century. The evening marked David’s
25th year as a member of the Royal Southern.

main speaker was PBO contributor Peter Poland, a long-standing friend of
David’s, who built many of his designs as co-owner of Hunter Boats. 

said: ‘David has an instinctive understanding of what sailors want – he has
been the Pied Piper of yacht designers, that’s his secret.

from all divisions of sailing have sailed out on a David Thomas design. They
will go on for ever.

is also responsible for the largest one-design fleet in Round the Island Race
history, 105 Sigma 33s, a record that will never be beaten.’

the attendees were Runar Steinsen and friends from Iceland.

in the day, race officials were forced to cancel the planned racing due to the
gale force winds. Sunday’s parade of sail also fell foul of the conditions.

intention is for those who entered to be given free entry to the July Regatta
on 12-13 July with prizes awarded from extracted results. It is further planned
that the Solent Snooker race event will be held on 19-20 July.

Pictures: David Thomas and Jonty Sherwill; and David Thomas. Credit Michael Austen