Oban speedboat race cup finds new home
A SILVER speed boat trophy last awarded more than 40 years ago has found a new sporting home: the Round Mull Race, writes Sandy Neil.
Octogenerian Donnie McLeod was the last winner of the MacDonald Cup in the 1960s before a speed limit was imposed in Oban Bay. The cup, sporting two fish-shaped handles and an engraving of two racing yachts, was donated by The Oban Times and handed down from winner to winner.
But when the ban put an end to the competition, Donnie had no-one to pass it on to, so he hoped it could find a new home.
Oban Sailing Club has now stepped forward to present the prize at its annual Round Mull Race, which races 120 miles over three legs from Oban to Tobermory, then Tobermory to Bunessan, and then back to Oban.
Billy Forteith, principal organiser of the Round Mull Race, said: ‘It is an open race that anybody with a keel boat can enter. You do not need to be a member.’ Finlo Cottier, commodore of the ‘thriving’ Oban Sailing Club on Dungallan Road, said its membership, which has grown recently from 120 to more than 200, could benefit from its range of boats and training from dinghies to powerboats.
Professor Cottier, senior lecturer in polar oceanography at SAMS, said: ‘We are trying to create a club that is working with lots of groups in the community and make sailing accessible to everyone.’
The Oban Times editor Susan Windram hands over the MacDonald Cup to Billy Forteith and Finlo Cottier.