Burnham Dragon Prize Giving Dinner 20 Nov 2012
What a night of entertainment and good food and wines! The Burnham Dragon Fleet and friends gathered together last Saturday evening for their annual Prize Giving and presentations, including the infamous Clanger Trophy.
This was a Black Tie show, with everybody making a big effort. The boys shed their normal casual gear for the stiff collar and the ladies welcomed the opportunity to reach into the glam-gear corner of their wardrobes. The candelabras and exotic table designs (by Mandy and Rowena) created the appropriate ambience for this annual extravaganza and helped set the scene for a wonderful evening. The fleet was determined to throw off the shadows of austerity and celebrate their winners’ achievements in fine style.
Burnham Dragons welcomed Vice Commodore Annie Reid, Chris and Gail Dicker (retired scions of the Lowestoft fleet), Rob and Clare Shepherd from the Medway fleet and Jan and Helene who had made the journey from Belgium. Jan managed to get some racing in with us over the weekend for the last official race of the season, the Pete Matthews Memorial Trophy. James, our club chef, produced a very fine dinner of salmon, followed by beef or cod and tasty deserts. Port was very much in evidence for the stilton and other cheeses. All this fine dining put the assembly into an exuberant mood for the prize giving and thank you presentations which fleet captains Mark and Mandy cracked through at a fine clip.
Special mention must be given to Edwin and the Phobe team and to Bruce for many years’ service as the Club Race Officer. There are a lot of prizes to present with over 70 races completed, excluding Burnham Week. Notable winners included Magic… for Burnham Week and the Beauty and the Beast team picked up several series wins including the biggest cup of the lot for the Petticrow Open Series. Well done to Rear Commodore Pete, Katie , Rob (in absentia) and crew for consistent and skilful sailing! The wonderful Mottie Rankin Trophy for the highest ranking Dragon which hadn’t won anything (provided the owner is over 60) and calculated on an impressively complicated formula went to Martin Makey. Now everybody knows…
The next special event was the Musto Draw for over £600 worth of Musto sailing gear. This was won by that notable Dragon crew Mrs Jean Hyde who was heard to say on her way up to collect the prize “What are oilskins?” Jean generously re-presented the said oilskins (having found out that she might have to go sailing) for auction, won with a generous donation by David Hall.
Following the traditional raffle, the assembly waited in excited anticipation for Tim Tavinor to present this year’s Clanger, to be awarded by its holder to the person or team who in his judgement has committed a most fool worthy act involving his or her Dragon during the year. The act doesn’t have to be on the water- for instance stupid errors of road navigation or incidents to and from regattas can count as well! Tim in fact won it last year because he failed to turn up to the Dinner to present it, leaving Kay, Nicky and Tomas to step in. They quite justly awarded it to Tim again. However this year Tim (who felt he was an undeserved recipient) did the honourable thing and made the presentation all on his own (well for a while until Kay couldn’t stand by uninvolved any longer).
I think the best way to describe Tim’s approach was its Tommy Cooperesque style- he should have been wearing a fez. A choir (misnamed) of Village People ‘look-a-likes’ tried their best to lead the singing but lack of skill and practice really didn’t help. Multiple technology failures and the most appalling effort at community singing I’ve ever witnessed led to tears of laughter from the audience.
However the Clanger did get awarded during this anarchy to Sir Dick Rycroft, owner of the 50 year old Logie and Chairman of Burnham RNLI. Dick’s error was going aground very publicly including catapulting his crew Alistair off the foredeck into the Crouch. Dick was heard to mutter that he supposed he deserved the Clanger and was surprised that in his 25 years ownership of Logie he had managed to avoid being presented with ‘the bell’. We look forward to potentially having the entire crew of the Burnham lifeboat present at the Clanger trophy next year!