Pitch Black

Pitch Black


The Fifth Lap

Steve Wright went home knackered and we all were very thankful to him for about 6 hours of trouble free at the helm of my cruiser Blithe. We started off at 3.28 am with Richard Flatt controlling the model on the outwards lap with myself making more sandwiches and coffee and tea. Richard Flatt found the going good with just enough light in the middle of the river and it was just beginning to get the grey mist of breaking day of Saturday. It became very cold in a low clinging mist that invaded your bones and muscles. Richard missed the large lump of the old railway bridge pier to his and our relief. He turned at Boater's Hill Quay and then I took over for the cruise back and I found the going good. Ken Stevens was on duty as the scrutineer back at HQ. We arrived back at 6.18 am. This time it took 17 minutes change the batteries.

The Seventh Lap

This lap started at 6.35 am and as you can see the weather had got very squally with heavy rain and high winds. You may think that the transmitter was getting very wet now, but I had brought some strong plastic bags for this problem and when it started to rain heavily we poked the aerial through a tight small hole and continued with the lap. Now nice and dry. Unfortunately for David Houseago he had this stint. Fortunately he had the correct weather clothing as he had has own yacht. Dave Tedstone was now at the helm of my cruiser LOOKING absolutely knackered. The model was crashing into a heavy tide sustaining some damage. But it was still pounding on.

Dave at the Helm
Heavy Rain
Over the Bow

As you can see to the left and the bottom right my model was getting a real HEAVY pounding and it was here that most of the damage to the model was done.
We lost breakwater structure and one surface to surface missile battery started to break loose. Plus a radar dome had started to wobble.

Heavy Going 1

You can get an idea about how BAD the river was from the photo below. The wave was some 15 inches above the main deck and it was not the only bash the model sustained, as it was nearly continuous.

Taking the waves
Norfolk 1
The Rib getting a Pounding

They had come up to Waveney River Centre to see the model as the chap was an ex sailor of the "real" Norfolk crew. He was very impressed by our efforts and would have even helped further if required. We all thanked them very much indeed.
With the greatest difficulty we changed the all batteries, pumped out the water and then greased the propellor tube bearings all in the space of 10 minutes. That must be a record. That's where I hurt my back!! Dave Leatherland hauled me in and Dave Tedstone hitched the rib on the stern and climbed in much relieved, he then resumed his position at the bow of the cruiser and we shot off at max speed as we had to get to over 100 miles within 24 hours.
Just before North Cove we passed 101 miles and we had achieved an Independent World Record, so we phoned in to inform HQ that we had made it.
We arrived back to tremendous cheering and applause from the waiting crowd, the model drivers and the shore crew had no sleep for 36 hours so we were all very tired but most of all very pleased indeed.

Here are a few photos of the main players

The Lads

David Houseago below, including Richard Thurston

The Moon 2
Driving 1
Roger, Dawn & Dave
Dave Leatherland at the Helm
Jen & Ken
John & Sandra

Dave Tedstone looks nackered and a very tired Dawn our Tea, Coffee and Biscuit Lady did'nt she do well!!!


Epilogue or My final thougths on the attempt