Since the last blog, Bucks Buoys have had two fundraising events, begun their ‘in boat’ training, learned about navigation, first aid at sea, seamanship and radio skills at the RYA courses in Teignmouth, and decided on a name for their boat.
In June, at the Double Diamond Scooter Club Rally in Towersey, near Thame, the team raised funds by holding an Ergo Sprint challenge; fastest man and fastest woman to 500 metres.
It was a blissfully hot Saturday, and those taking up the challenge paid £5 a go to try and make the best time of the day. Competition was fierce amongst the men! Kev’s son Rhys took an early lead in the men’s competition with a very impressive time of 1 minute 32 seconds, but was pipped to the post close to the end of the day by Will T, a rower! Will’s winning time was 1 minute 27 seconds.
There were fewer women challengers than men but the women who did take part were very determined, and more than one of them entered twice and beat their own time! Ultimately Kev’s daughter Lauren was the fastest woman with a fantastic time of 1 minute 54 seconds.
In September the Buoys hosted a Family Fun Day and an evening Race Night at David Lloyd Club in Beaconsfield. In contrast to the June event, the weather was persistent rain, but it was warm and cosy in the Club listening to compere Charlie Carter singing live, and chatting to club members about the Campaign. The Race Night was a fantastic fun evening with lots of laughs, some great fundraising with the Silent Auction and the betting, great food and of course plenty of drink!
The events raised over £6200 for the charities, which has been added to the ‘Mydonate’ total. Massive thanks to all who supported Bucks Buoys at the events, and to David Lloyd Club Beaconsfield for hosting.
A special thanks also to The Le de Spencers Arms in Downley, High Wycombe, for their generous donation of £400 raised at their quiz nights.
With their boat at Rannoch in Burnham on Crouch, the Buoys feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend many weekends rowing in the estuary there in various weather conditions. Spring 2019 will see them complete their required overnight hours and of course lots more days out in the boat as well.
September also saw the Team attending their required RYA courses -RYA Sea Survival, RYA First aid, Marine SRC (VHF) certificate, RYA Essential Navigation and Seamanship skills - at Seaports South West in Teignmouth, Devon. The Buoys found it challenging being back in the classroom for the six day course, but happily they all passed their exams with flying colours!
While in Teignmouth the decision was made to change the name of the boat from ‘Maria’, the name chosen by Atlantic 4 for their Campaign in 2017, to ‘Sara-Lou’ (after Kev’s Wife Sara, who handles the bulk of the Team’s admin). Some say it’s unlucky to re-name a boat, but as Atlantic 4 had already changed the name from ‘All Beans No Monkeys’ (2016 Race) to ‘Maria’ and went on to beat their record, the Buoys are hoping for a repeat of the same pattern!