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Archive file by Chas Drew

The early days of multi-hull yachting in Queensland was both complicated and vexing. Except for one exception, the Wynnum Manly Yacht Club, it appeared that multi-hull yachts were not welcome. I speak of 1963 and early 1964 when we had three yachts "Vagabond", "Trident" and "Triumph" in the water and racing with the Wynnum Manly Club. "Conda-Vista I" had raced previously with the Q.C.Y.C. fleet, but at this time had been sold by Doug Glanville, who had already laid the keels for "Conda-Vista II".

There were numerous yachts nearing completion with many more in various stages of construction. "Vagabond", "Trident" and "Triumph" commenced sailing with the Q.C.Y.C. fleet but we were delegated to Division 2, and were not recognised as ocean racing yachts. All skippers were members of the two clubs mentioned as well as foundation members of the Queensland Catamaran Association. After a great deal of arguing and conniving, we were accepted in the 1964 Brisbane - Gladstone Ocean Yacht race, run under the auspices of the Q.C.Y.C. All three yachts entered.

Due to a cyclone, the race was postponed Friday to Saturday, and the start of the race saw winds from 30 to 65 knots. "Triumph" was the first casualty, losing her mast while leading the fleet, half-way across Moreton Bay to M2, "Trident" being the second to withdraw at Tangalooma where she was experiencing mast trouble also. In fact, returning from Tangalooma on the Sunday she also lost her mast.

"Vagabond" completed the course in record time.
The end result was no more racing with the Q.C.Y.C as multi-hulls were then banned.

The three members, Hedley Nicol, Bruce Goodson and Chas Drew, by this time accompanied by Bill Wilson, took the problem to the Queensland Catamaran Association requesting sponsorship of racing and cruising events. However, under the constitution of the Catamaran Association this was not possible. It was suggested that the interested parties form a Cruising Council attached to the Catamaran Association, which was formed on Monday 13 April, 1964 at the residence of Chas Drew. Although this functioned for some months it was never an entirely satisfactory arrangement, and on Monday 1st February 1965 the members present that evening at the residence of Mike Helmrich, formed the Queensland Multi-hull Yacht Club. Although there were ten members present, by the time the Constitution was ratified we had increased to eighteen.

The following were the foundation members:

C. DREW Triumph Commodore, Rating Officer, Safety
H. NICOL Vagabond Vice Commodore, Measurer, Safety Officer
M. HELMRICH Reef Roamer Rear Commodore
B. WILLEY Naiad Secretary, Treasurer
W. WILSON Coolaroo  
G. WIENEKE Tria  
B. GOODSON Trident  
D. GLANVILLE Conda Vista  
A. JAGO    
S. McCANN    

 

At the next meeting for formation of QMYC, the following extra members were present: George Pickers, Frank Cowlishaw, Geoff Phillips, Peter Swane, Peter Campbell, Ross Richardson

Our early meetings took place in the amenity rooms of James Bell Machinery. From there we shifted our meetings to the Conference Room of the Breakfast Creek Hotel. In December, 1965 we held our first meeting in the South Brisbane Sailing Club.

Our first programme follows -

6/7-Feb-1965 Bay Race Manly - Peel Is. - Rous Channel - Finish St. Helena
20/21-Feb-1965 Old Pile Light - Reef Point - East Knoll - Tangalooma - return next day
6/7-Mar-1965 Overnight Bay Race - start 2pm round Peel Island to EastKnoll Buoy - North Reef Scarborough - back to Coffee Pots
20/21-Mar-1965 Ocean Race to Mooloolaba with overnight stop
3/4-Apr-1965 Ocean Race to Noosa and back
Easter 16/19-Apr-1965 Ocean Race to Gladstone

 

For a newly formed club, you would have to agree that this was a pretty stout programme and typified the enthusiasm which existed.

Chas Drew
July 1974     

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