Sharps Doom Bar Merlin Rocket Week 2017

We are excited to announce that once again our Headline Sponsors will be Sharps Doom Bar

Sunday 2nd - Friday 7th July

First-time competitor's view of Salcombe Merlin Week

by Karl Thorne

In 2016 I achieved an ambition and competed in Merlin Rocket Week at Salcombe, UK, this event is held within the beautiful estuary and has a limited entry of 120 boats. It is a well-established event and has come about from the popularity of the Class at Salcombe Week becoming too large and the fleet requiring their own regatta.

A few illuminating statistics, the entry opened last November and was filled in 3 days! There was also a large waiting list established. The Nationals, a separate event held at alternating coastal venues elsewhere, has attracted an average of 67 boats over the last 10 years.

So what makes this event almost twice as popular than the Class' own National Championships?

  1. Well drilled race team, with a mix of PROs from one club used to running races on this patch of water
  2. Racing run in four flights - each flight meets twice in the week, start line numbers are kept (reasonably) sensible
  3. You sail one 90-minute race a day round the estuary using the club racing marks, starting at either 10.30 or 2.30 depending on your schedule. You end up with 3 morning races and 3 afternoon races over the week
  4. The starting gun fires on time regardless of conditions, i.e. 2 knots against the tide or 28 knots screaming down the harbour
  5. The challenge of the venue, every part of every leg of every race is different
  6. Ruthless but consistent race management - Black Flag start from the outset, and instant disqualification for infringing the small boat fairway that is closed to racing yachts 10 minutes before the warning signal. The start line then becomes the whole width of the estuary inside the warning signal and the area is temporarily shut to other traffic movements.
  7. Excellent socials laid on every evening in a very welcoming yacht club, attended by all ages. Especially bar diving for the over 70s
  8. Excellent holiday venue for the whole family
  9. Stadium like viewing for the start and finish, especially popular on the 28 knot days!
  10. No hanging about all day either on or off the water. Being able to plan other activities around your racing.

I think the best way to describe the event was a family holiday interrupted by some very highly competitive racing which took up no more that 3-4 hours of your day. As for our result, that didn't really matter it was just so much fun and very different to any sailing I've done before – the only similarity is that the best sailors in the fleet on the open circuit take the top thirty positions at Salcombe!

We are excited to announce that once again our Headline Sponsors will be Sharps Doom Bar


Please see below the Social Calendar for the Merlin Rocket week at Salcombe YC

Saturday 1st 0900-1700 Registration at Batson
  1200-1500 Lunch available
  1830 Competitors Briefing
    MROA AGM (Chart Room) Follows Briefing
    Free Beer and Pimms (while it lasts!) in the Dining Room after the AGM
  1900-2045 Bar Meals available*
Sunday 2nd 0930 – 1100 Coffee & Cake
  1200-1500 Lunch available
  1830 Volunteers Reception (chart room)
  1930-2045 Bar Meals available*
  8pm till late Nick the Fish
  2130 Prize Giving
Monday 3rd 0930 – 1100 Coffee & Cake
  1200-1500 Lunch available
  1830 Paddle board racing
  1930-2045 Bar Meals available*
  2130 Prize Giving
Tuesday 4th 0930 – 1100 Coffee & Cake
  1200-1500 Lunch available
  1930-2045 Bar Meals available* 
    Band – Dr Oz – Tickets £15pp in advance to include food and entertainment – on the night entry £20
  2130 Prize Giving
Wednesday 5th 0930 – 1100 Coffee & Cake
  1200-1500 Lunch available
    Dress up in your lumber jack shirts, grab a bale of hay and place your bets Bing Pig Racing & Disco party night to include: Hog Roast, beers

Tickets £15pp in advance to include food and entertainment-  on the night entry £20

    Hog Roast
  2130 Prize Giving
Thursday 6th 0930 – 1100 Coffee & Cake
  1200-1500 Lunch available
  1730 RNLI are opening the boat and station for the evening especially for the Merlin visitors, you will get a detailed tour of the boats and station, and the museum will also remain open
  1830 Social tickets included in your entry free

Mexican Night, come and party with us Chilli, Nachos & Jugs of margaritas (fancy dress if you wish) we will have a photo booth, we cannot wait to see the pictures

  2000 Band - Mocktails
  2130 Prize Giving
Friday 7th 0930 – 1100 Coffee & Cake
  1200-1500 Lunch available
  1800-1930 Curry Supper – if you wish to dine with us this evening the menu will be indian cuisine to tantalise your taste buds – be sure to book your table at the bar/
  2000 Prize Giving – Cliff House


Booked participants please note the following:

Change of details

If your details change, particularly your crew or boat information, please would you let us know directly? Please note the Principal Race Officer cannot accept sail number changes once Merlin Week is underway.


If for any reason, your circumstances change and you can no longer come, please email   . Providing we can replace your entry with a boat our waiting list we may, at the SYC Merlin Week organising committee’s discretion, refund your entry fee, net of an admin charge of £20.00).  However please note we cannot offer refunds after the 10th June 2017.


We recommend you book your accommodation now, to avoid disappointment.  The following links may help you:

Boat Park

If you want to leave your boat at Batson, please book your space directly with the Harbour office.

Harbour Office: 01548 843791

Boat Park: 01548 844010


Registration will take place at Batson Boat Park on Saturday 1st July between 09:00 and 15:00.

Trolley Transfer

For those of you who are purchasing passes for Mill Bay we will offer a complimentary trolley transfer between 12noon and 5pm Saturday 1st July.

Please note that neither SYC nor the owner designated assistance moving the trollies can accept responsibility for any damage incurred during transfer.

Trailer Parking

Your entry includes parking for your trailer. Maps will be provided at registration.

Please note that neither SYC nor the owner of the field can accept responsibility for loss or damage of your trailer during storage.

Trailers are not permitted on Millbay or outside a designated space at Batson. Please leave it in the trailer park or other space.


Competitors' Briefing

The competitors' briefing will take place in the yacht club at 18.30hrs on Saturday 1st July.


Entry for 2018

Details to follow