It is with regret and much sadness that I come to inform you that Simon Russell passed away earlier this week due to COVID.
He is going to be very hard to replace but I will do my best to keep SportsBoatWorld running as best as I can and maintain the level of service to all our costumers and future clients.
Sail on Fumesy…
I grew up in the heart of the Cotswolds in Gloucestershire. Despite being a fair distance for the sea I was surrounded by many small lakes and gravel pits that offered some fantastic dinghy sailing and what turned out a great place to start my sailing career.
My early years were spent sailing International cadets at South Cerney SC before I ventured into the laser 1 and Scorpion dinghy.
Lauching my first cadet in 1975
In the late 70’s my parents fancied something a bit bigger than their Fireball, so we soon found ourselves as a family (dog and all) commuting the 360mile round trip to Plymouth each weekend to race our mini tonner around Plymouth sound including coastal racing to Fowey and Falmouth . A few years later the boats got a big bigger and sailing moved to the Solent.
Spending every weekend in the Hamble and many hours in the King and Queen pub, I soon made several good sailing friends and the decision to move to the south coast wasn’t a difficult one. in the late 80’s, I spent a number of years traveling from one sailing event to the next. My first break was a chance to sail on the B&Q / Virgin airlines Ultra 30 competing in the UK Series. (The Ultras were the first boats to get proper TV coverage back in the early 90’s) … I jumped ship when the opportunity came to sail with Lawrie Smith on his Ultra “Frontera! and from then on, I didn’t look back.
Utra30 circuit 1990’s
In the early 2000’s I was working for Jack Holt selling marine Hardware to the UK Boat builders and with the connections I had built in the racing world was approached by Musto to sell clothing to race teams around the world which I did until 2018 .During this time I was also encouraged to keep sailing and was fortunate to have sailed with many fantastic sailors at some of the world’s best venues . I think of myself as being very modest , but I’m proud of my sailing achievements over the years which include: J24 National Champion , Melges 24 National , European and World Champion , Mumm30 European Champion , Etchells National , European and twice World champion , ISAF Bronze medallist , Three times Captain’s cup winner and member of the British Admirals Cup team .
After involvement with the SB20’s development at my days at Jack Holt and competing at some enjoyable class events in previous years I grabbed the opportunity to take the Helm at Sportsboatworld in late 2018. The SB20 has been and still is a leading international one design class which ticks all the boxes for fast fun and affordable sailing. The class continues to grow around the world offering the best bang for your buck one design racing on offer anywhere. It’s a fantastic opportunity to be involved with such a great class and enthusiastic group of owners.
Having a lot of fun in the SB20 at the King of Cowes regatta
Outside of sailing and when time allows I enjoy tinkering on classic cars, clay shooting, coastal walks and attempting to train my sprnger spaniel..