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This weekend was our Scottish Islands Peaks Race sail training weekend aboard the good ships Bluebird and La Girafe III.

We spent Friday night going through safety briefings and learning how to live aboard the crowded yachts in Clyde Marina, Ardrossan. The weather forecast was poor, which meant getting up in the dark 0400 on Saturday to ready the boats for an 0600 departure for Lamlash Bay on Arran. 

Saturday entailed sail training and practice in rubber boat handling (the runners did this without adults in the small rubber boats) before both teams were ferried ashore to run. They completed 11 miles in very encouraging times, arriving back at Lamlash pier as the weather closed in. Saturday night was spent on the yachts in Lamlash Bay as the wind howled in the rigging, learning how to tie knots such as the bowline and clove hitch. We talked through the strategy for the race. Due to the tides, it is hard to predict how this year's race will develop. It could be won and lost on any of the three islands; or, of course, on the water on any of the three days. 

Sunday, disappointingly, dawned with very little wind; but La Girafe III practised with her new asymmetric spinnaker sail on the sail back to Ardrossan, while Bluebird practised launching and recovering runners and their rubber dinghy from a moving yacht under sail.

Great work everyone! You can follow our SIPR news on our SIPR Twitter account here.

Video by Thomas K