Tribute to a Scilly Idyll

Brewery |

Tribute to a Scilly Idyll
Back in 2002, the Daily Telegraph published an article in praise of the World Pilot Gig Championships over on Scilly, but wondered after 13 years whether the event had the legs to continue.

Following an electric final day’s racing at this year’s event, having reached its 29th anniversary and with Tribute in tow as the official beer of the festival, we can safely testify that this is one show that’s going to run and run, or should that be row and row?

There were a number of firsts at this year’s Championships, not least being the sponsorship support from Tribute to help this unique event run smoothly as ever across the weekend. This was also the first year that GigRower magazine, also sponsored by Tribute through its partnership with the Cornish Pilot Gig Association (CPGA) was able to stream incredible live racing footage from drone cameras above the boats in each race.

Most excitingly, there was a new name on the Men’s trophy for the first time in six years as Looe, racing in Currah’s Pride, took the honours in front of Caradon’ Ann Glanville, with previous champions Falmouth finishing third in Black Rock.

Caradon ladies, in the Ann Glanville, successfully defended the crown they won in 2017, heading home in front of Falmouth’s Black Rock in second place with Mounts Bay’s Kensa finishing third.

Closer to home, Charlestown took the ladies veterans title in a close fought race on a weekend that witnessed some of the calmest waters for the event in memory, while at the same time featuring real drama as the fog closed in across the islands on Sunday morning which led to a cancellation of the second round of placing heats in both the men’s and women’s races.

As the fog was slowly burned away by the brilliant sunshine, a window of opportunity opened on Sunday afternoon to run the finals of both main races and, in a scene reminiscent of Pirates of the Caribbean, as the final men’s race was making its dash across the bay, the fog followed closely behind to shroud the islands once more.

Thankfully, by the time it made landfall, all of the boats were safely stowed away, the prizes had been awarded and the post-event party was in full swing. While the rains had stayed away for the whole of the racing schedule, there was nothing dry about the celebrations that followed a hard weekend at the oar!