22nd October 2018
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Sailing challenge a success for two crews

0 comments, , by , in News

They were fueled by sugary sweets, adrenaline and, of all things, Cup a Soups, but the competitors in this year’s Bergen to Lerwick Race have at last reached dry land.

A special ceremony was laid on today at Mareel for the hardy sailors who had taken part in the gruelling sea-faring challenge.

The crew of the overall winning yacht Hanne Marie. From left; Thomas Imbert, Yngve Thuen, Rolf Hermansen, Petter Hermansen and Claus Gladyszak. Photo: Dave Donaldson

The crew of the overall winning yacht Hanne Marie. From left; Thomas Imbert, Yngve Thuen, Rolf Hermansen, Petter Hermansen and Claus Gladyszak. Photo: Dave Donaldson

Winner overall was the vessel Hanne Marie. Its five-man crew benefited from “silk-smooth” conditions to help them reach the isles.

Skipper Rolf Hermansen is a veteran of this race, having now taken part in it on 22 occasions. He said his crew had worked well together, and had not taken the task too seriously.

“It was very nice weather, with perfect conditions,” Mr Hermansen said. “It was a little tricky because we wondered should we go north or south, but we chose to veer to the middle.

“We are sailing a lot together. This is my 22nd time. I do not come every year, as sometimes it doesn’t fit, but it’s always nice to come to Shetland.”

There was no doubt the secret of the crew’s success, either, all of which are looking forward to getting the return leg underway on Sunday.

“We had a plan, and we followed it,” Mr Hermansen added. “There was a lot of humour, and a lot of fun. It’s serious … but not that serious.”

The blue riband for being first over the line was handed to the good-natured crew onboard the Erin, however. All haling from Port Edgar in Edinburgh, the team – captained by John Murphy – was “elated” to have crossed the line.

Kilted crew-member Ken Brown said the trip had been “fuelled by passion, commitment, great fun and morale”.

He said: “We got into a good sleep pattern so we were fresh. We were telling good stories to keep people alert, so there was no nodding off in the middle of the night, and we kept focused on wanting to be first.

First over the line were the crew of the Erin. Back (from left):  Fran Robertson, Harry O'Donnell, Flora McPhail, Gary Tait.  Front: Ken Brown, John Murphy and Tim McKeague. Photo: Dave Donaldson

First over the line were the crew of the Erin. Back (from left): Fran Robertson, Harry O’Donnell, Flora McPhail, Gary Tait. Front: Ken Brown, John Murphy and Tim McKeague. Photo: Dave Donaldson

“We watched the boats behind and that gave us the incentive to go first. We had plenty of food. Somebody found Cup a Soups … but they went overboard. We had lots of sugary sweets, just to keep going.”

The return leg to Bergen is due to set sail on Sunday.

Tags:

About Ryan Taylor

Ryan Taylor has worked as a reporter since 1995, and has been at The Shetland Times since 2007, covering a wide variety of news topics. Before then he reported for other newspapers in the Highlands, where he was raised, and in Fife, where he began his career with DC Thomson. He also has experience in broadcast journalism with Grampian Television. He has lived in Shetland since 2002, where he harbours an unhealthy interest in old cars and motorbikes.

View other stories by »

Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.