Botany Bay Yacht Club celebrates five decades

Racing on Botany Bay 2013 - Planit (Melges)
Karen Ballantyne
Botany Bay Yacht Club - Since Lt. James Cook’s HMS Endeavour Bark sailed through the heads in 1770, Botany Bay has a proud tradition of being a fine place to sail. Half a century ago, sailors were inspired to form a club specifically for yachts, and held the inaugural race of the Botany Bay Yacht Club on the 19 January 1964, with nine yachts entered.

Racing on Botany Bay c1970 - Boomeroo
Karen Ballantyne

In the early years, the St George Sailing Club and the St George Motor Boat Club supported the Club, providing venues for meetings and social activities. The Endeavour Boat Shed wharf gave members access to their keel boats. After much searching, the Botany Bay Yacht Club eventually purchased the Endeavour Boat Shed at 44 Endeavour Street, Sans Souci as our permanent home.

The Botany Bay Yacht Club has a proud tradition of hosting Class, State, National, and World Championships, including hosting the World Youth Sailing Championships to mark Australia’s Bicentenary and more recently, the Prince Philip Cup. Over the last half century the Club has hosted numerous events for 470, Adams 8, Dragon, Endeavour, Etchell, Finn, J24, and Timpenny 670, to name a few. Many notable champions have sailed with the Club over the last 50 years including Colin Beaschell, Harold Cudmore, Dennis Connor, and Sir James Hardy.

BBYC Twilight Race - Miss Concepion
Karen Ballantyne

The original Commodore of the BBYC, Reg Gardner OAM, designed and built around 600 Endeavours. Reg contested the Junior Offshore Group races in UK and the World Titles in Holland in his Endeavour II. Endeavours continue to have a special place in the Club's heart and the BBYC to host the 2014 National Endeavour Championships (Eight to nine March).

Today the Club is still all about sailing keel boats with summer Friday twilight races, year round Saturday racing, an active cruising division and no pokies! Endeavour Marine Services, Herrick Sailmakers, Tony Dillon Rigging, and AusSea Sailing School are conveniently onsite and to the best of the Club's knowledge, in 50 years they've never run out of cold beer!

Botany Bay Yacht Club historic sail past
Karen Ballantyne

The BBYC's will commemorate that first race on Sunday 19 January from 1p.m. and continue the celebrations through 2014. Yachts entering the 178th Australia Day Regatta on 26 January will receive a commemorative flag. The Commodore’s 50th celebration dinner will be held in July.

Event website: click here
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