Member Sign In

Member Sign In

Royal Cape Yacht Club

Royal Cape Yacht Club
South Africa

The Club was founded as the Table Bay Yacht Club in 1905 and commenced operation as such in a waterside boatshed located some 50 to 60 metres northward of the foot of Loop Street. Surviving early vicissitudes, the club's name was changed in 1914 to the Cape Yacht Club which incorporated the Alfred Rowing Club and shortly after we received the Royal Charter to become the Royal Cape Yacht Club.

Buffeted by change we moved from clubhouse to clubhouse, and it was not until the decade after the 2nd World War (1939 - 1945) that the shell of the present clubhouse came to be erected. It was added to when the local yachting boom - started by the first Trans-Atlantic Race from Cape Town to Rio de Janeiro in 1971 - took off and changed the Club from a small membership of around 300 to the present firgure of some 3000. Boat accommodation was forced to progress from swing moorings to the marina's of today. Likewise control had to pass from amateur committees to the professional staff which you will find today.

Invitational Cup Team

Commodore of RCYC and Team Manager - John Martin

"I was greatly honoured as Commodore of Royal Cape Yacht Club (RCYC) to be invited to this most prestigious event.

Newport has great memories for me – during my single-handed and double-handed sailing career, spanning 1981 – 1991, I had the honour of winning a few races, Single-Handed and most importantly, winning the last leg of the BOC Single-Handed 1986/87 Round the World Race, which finished in Newport."

I once bought a print in Newport, post America's Cup days and the caption read "The Greater the Challenge, the Greater the Victory", which I have used as motivation for my sailing life since then."

John Martin lived on yachts from the age of 8 and cut his teeth seriously in 1971 aboard a new Swan 37 imported to South Africa specifically to do the Cape to Rio race, starting as bowman and working his way back. So it is apt for him to be sailing a Swan 42 in this Regatta, so many years later.

Highlights of some of his greater sailing achievements :

  • Winning and breaking the record for Double-Handed Transatlantic Race in 1986 and then again in 1991, with his brother, Ian, when apart from breaking his own record, it was the fastest west/east record of any monohull ever. Recorded in the Guiness Book of Records.
  • 2nd place – Transatlantic Single-Handed races - twice
  • Winner 1st and 4th legs – Single-Handed BOC Single-Handed Round the World Race – 1986.
  • 2nd place – 1st leg BOC Single-Handed Round the World Race – 1990
  • Winner 2nd leg BOC Single-Handed Round the World Race – 1990
  • Fully crewed Racing highlights :-
  • Many fully-crewed races up and down the South African Coast
  • 14 Trans-Atlantic Races – always on the podium
  • Awarded National Colours for his country 9 times (Springbok Colours) for his achievements in sailing – 1980 – 1990
  • Awarded the State President's Gold Award twice
  • Sportsman of the Year, Yachtsman of the Year, Defence Sportsman of the Year – several times
  • Excellence in Yachting – the Gordon Burn Wood Trophy – twice

Skipper - David Beresford Hudson

Started sailing as a junior member 1959.

Held 20 SA Championship titles in 8 dinghy & keelboat classes between 1968 & 2002. Represented SA in the Admiral's Cup (1975), the Olympic Games (1992), the ISAF Games (1994) and in 14 World Championships between 1968 and 2009, winning 1 silver medal (2008) & 3 bronze medals (1980, 1997, 2009).

  • Won Lipton Cup for RCYC in 1999 as co-skipper and in 1997 & 2005 as helm.
  • Won Cork Week 2008 (helm).
  • Won the Laser SB3 EuroCup 2009 (helm).
  • Won Cowes Week J109 Class 2010, and UK Laser SB3 National Championships in 2010 (helm).
  • Awards : Springbok Colours 6 times between 1971 & 1984, State President's Sport Merit Award 1981, SAS Gordon Burn-Wood Trophy - Meritorious service to sailing 1996, SAS Owen Aisher Trophy - Yachtsman of the Year 1981, 2008, 2009.
  • Administration : Past Vice President of SAYRA, past President of WP Sailing Association, served for 5 yrs on SA Appeals Committee, Manager & Coach - SA Olympic Sailing Team 1996, Patron and co-founder - Zeekoevlei Training Centre, Chairman and co-founder - The RaceAhead Foundation.
  • Actively involved in youth training and coaching over many years.

Pit - Nicholas Mace

Started his sailing career at age 5 sailing various classes of dinghies, flying Dutchman and Hobie Cats.

Progressed to Keel Boats where he owns a very successful 42ft Alex Simonis designed yacht, purposely built for Admirals Cup and subsequently modified.

During his vigorous, enthusiastic and active approach to sailing and his will to win, he achieved a 2nd place in the Cape to Bahia (Salvador, Brazil) Trans-Atlantic Yacht Race in top class competition.

He has been on the podium for all of South Africa's most prestigious Offshore Events and has achieved 1st position on no less than four 360 mile races.

His yacht, Gumption, won the SA IRC Championship award twice and he was aboard the winning yacht for the China Cup, twice.

Apart from his active sailing participation, he has proven to be an extremely good organiser of sailing events, having been Chairman of our Lipton Cup – a very prestigious Regatta in South Africa – for two consecutive years.

Nicholas and his wife, Deidre are avid Cruisers in their "off time" aboard their luxury 50 ft Catamaran, Meshuggah, and have cruised some 70,000 n.m. all over the world.

He is a valued member of RCYC, has served on the Committee and was awarded the Gordon Burn Wood Trophy for Excellence in Yachting in 2008.

Trim 2 – Hylton Hale

Hylton Hale is John Martin's right hand man at Royal Cape Yacht Club.

As Rear Commodore Sailing, Hylton has pushed the standard and quality of sailing events at the Club to a very high level.

Apart from his sailing credentials, he has been instrumental in organizing the biggest South African Regatta in terms of participation, where he had a record of 104 entries this year for a 60 mile race.

Hylton owns and campaigns a IRC 42 ft yacht and is rarely not on the podium in local Regattas.

His sailing background includes years of Hobie Cat sailing, achieving the highest of 12th from 120 in the World Championships and 2nd in the Hobie Tiger National Championships.

His success in Keelboat campaigns include:

  • First in 120 mile Race Round Cape of Good Hope
  • First – IRC 60 mile event
  • First – IRC National Championships SA
  • Proven and committed Administrator over the last ten years for Hobie Cat SA, Volvo Ocean Race (Logistics and Resources - Puma Ocean Racing) and a valued member of the Royal Cape Yacht Club Committee.

Helmsman - Martin Lambrecht

Martin has been actively involved in sailing since the age of 6 and has represented South Africa Internationally in numerous Dinghy and Keelboats regatta's.

Most notable achievements include:

  • 1st Fireball World Championship (USA - 1992)
  • Olympic Games (Barcelona - 1992)
  • South African Yachtsman of the Year (1992)
  • 1st Rothmans Week (1994)
  • South African Admirals Cup Team (1995)
  • 2nd Hong Kong to Vietnam Race (1996)
  • 1st Lipton Cup Challenge (1999)
  • 3rd Cape Town to Bahia Race (2009)
  • 1st China Cup International Regatta (2009 & 2010)

Colin Whitehead - Main

Started sailing at the age of 6 on Optimists and graduated to bigger & faster boats in the form of Hobie Catamarans, mostly the Hobie 14 at that time. As a kid he spent hours on the waters of Cape Town with friends for fun as well as racing competitively.

At the age of 13, I won the World Championship Title Hobie 16 with my father Mick Whitehead. Since then & through my teens, twenties, thirties & forties, I have represented South Africa in 14 different World Championships.

He has been awarded the 'South African PRESIDENTS Sports Award' & received his Springbok Colours and multiple Provincial awards & Colours for sailing.

He is involved in Youth Development sailing programs and for the past six years has been the President of the Hobie Class, attending events in this capacity, managing the class, representing the class globally, assisting with event organization & setup of global schedules, world championships, selection processes, youth development & more.

Since 2006 I have acted as South African team manager for the ISAF Youth Worlds team leading the youth through the events in Denmark, Brazil, Turkey & now Croatia.

Currently he sails Hobie Tigers on a local, National & International level, as well as racing a 42 ft IRC racing yacht as the main sheet trimmer. I also compete on the Hobie 16 circuit with my daughter as part of her development in the sport.

My passion for sailing has always been my life's driving force, my thirst for exciting & extreme sailing could never be quenched & I am constantly in search of new challenges.

He has competed in the following events.

  • 1978 Hobie 16 World Championship – SA Team
  • 1979 Hobie 14 World s Plettenberg bay – SA Team
  • 1980 – Hobie 16 Worlds Virgin Islands – SA Team
  • 1982 – Hobie 16 Worlds Tahiti - SA Team
  • 1984 – Hobie 16 Worlds – Fort Walton Beach USA – Team SA
  • 1984 – 6TH Place – Worrell 1000 Endurance race Fort Lauderdale to Virginia Beach
  • 1991 Hobie 16 World championships - Guadeloupe
  • 1993 ISAF Worlds Hobie 16 – La Rochelle France
  • 1996 Hobie 16 World Championships - Dubai
  • 1998 Hobie 16 World championships – Australia Witsundays
  • 2005 Hobie 16 Worlds – Port Elizabeth SA
  • 2006Hobie Tiger Worlds – Cangas Spain
  • 2007 Hobie 16 Worlds – Fiji
  • 2008 Hobie Tiger Worlds – Langebaan SA

Grinder - Gary Sindler

Has been a member of RCYC since childhood and participated in all the major regattas and events the club has hosted over time.

After obtaining a Diploma in Industrial Engineering he spent several years overseas racing on the international circuit.

His sailing CV is pretty extensive and includes winning the J22 Worlds twice, the China Cup International regatta twice and competing in the following international events.

Cape to Bahia Race; Kenwood Cup; Corum Cup ;Transpac Race

For a number of years he raced onboard the RCYC entry for Lipton Cup. In 2007 he took on the role as Chairman for this event.

Bowman – Nic Baigrie

Nic started his sailing career in the Mirror Dinghy, competing in the 1999 and 2003 World Championships in Saldhana and Tasmania respectively. He progressed to racing small keelboats, first on the Smackwater Jack racing team on a J27, and then with the very successful Regent Express on the popular Pacer 27. He has since raced internationally in Cowes Week in 2008 and 2010, and was a member of the South African entry in the 2010 Rolex Commodores Cup aboard Windpower, his current IRC racing Team.

He has also competed extensively on the South African IRC racing circuit, and is a member of Team Intasure, the favoured challenger for this year's Lipton Cup.

Nic is a longstanding member of Royal Cape and is currently studying Honours in Economics at the University of Cape Town where he was awarded the Statistics class medal and Allan Gray Prize in his undergraduate B.Com.

Trimmer 1 – Guido Verhovert

(nickname "Minister of Entertainment")

Brought up on the water on the west coast of South Africa hissailing career has been a natural progression of moving up through various classes and Ocean crossings with the highlight so far being the 32 Americas Cup.

He has participated in many events with podium positions, including

Long Distance:

Cape to Rio 2000 1st
Mauritius to Durban 2002 1st
Maputo to Durban 2006 1st
Cape to Bahia 2009 3rd
Maputo to Durban 2009 Line honours
Durban to Cape Town on Hobie 16,s 2004

Class racing:

J22 National Championships 1st 2008, 2010
Pacer 27 National championships 1st 2008
Start 23 National Championships 1st 2006 2nd 2007
Hobie 16 National Championships 2nd 2002

Americas Cup:

Starting in 2005 as boat captain on RSA 48 and sailing in the position of Pitman all the way through all the acts in Marseille,Valencia,Trapani,Malmo,Valencia again and a regatta in Kiel. Match racing events in Japan, Germany and a 1st in Spain. Duties during the cup were deck gear, Rig installation and Minister of entertainment amongst others.

Mast - Carl Richter

Began his sailing career on Hobie Cats 16, sailing in various regattas and National Events, awarded Most Improved Sailor in his first National Event then moved onto Keel Boats as Bowman and Head Sail Trimmer.

Competed in eight local South African, Double Cape Events and five Mykonos Offshore Events.

Currently sails aboard Unleashed as Navigator, with Hylton Hale.

Won the 2009 IRC Nationals aboard unleashed and main positions include bowman and Halyards.

Reserve - Wandisile Xayimpi

Affectionately known as "Wadi", he is one of the rising stars from the Izivunguvungu Foundation for Youth Development Sailing Academy - an outreach programme dedicated to providing less privileged youngsters with the opportunity to learn to sail and develop skills which can assist them in the Maritime world.

22 year old Wadi joined Izivunguvungu eight years ago and has since become a Sailing Instructor at the School. He has competed in numerous local, provincial and national dingy sailing regattas and is a good sailor, competing as both skipper and foredeck crew. He crewed for Dave Hudson recently achieving 3rd at the SB3 world championships in Portugal in 2010 and 2nd in 2009 in Dublin.

He was this year Nominated Sailor of the month by SA Sailing Magazine.

ISAF Sailor ID Information

Name Position ISAF Sailor ID
Martin Lambrecht HELM RSAML7
Colin Whitehead Main RSACW2
Guido Verhovert Trim 1 RSAGV2
Hylton Hale Trim 2 RSAHH2
Gary Sindler Grinder RSAGS4
Nicholas Mace Pit RSANM2
Carl Richter Mast RSACR2
Nic Baigrie Bow RSANB1
Wandisile Xayimpi Mid-Bow RSAWX2
Jahoo Glinski Owner's Rep

POB 772
Cape Town 8000


Club History


John Martin


David Beresford Hudson


Nicholas Mace


Hylton Hale


Martin Lambrecht


Colin Whitehead


Gary Sindler


Nic Baigrie


Guido Verhovert


Carl Richter


Wandisile Xayimpi


2011 Official Sponsors

2011 Supporters