The Sailing Crewsponsorus.png

Bob, Joey, Twig and Christine

The crew of 4 are all experienced sailors (as long as you don’t compare the rest of us with Bob!) and their ages cover 4 decades!

Bob Shepton

bob.jpgBob is in his 80s. He has been a Royal Marines Officer, a full time youth leader in the east end of London, Chaplain to two schools, and Chief Instructor at an Outdoor Centre in Glencoe between the chaplaincies.. He discovered and pioneered climbing at Lulworth and Portland, and made first ascents of rock routes on the Ormes of Llandudno.

Voyages include a circumnavigation of the world with school leavers via Antarctica, Cape Horn, Torres Strait and Cape of Good Hope. The mast falling down in Antarctica was a bit of a crisis but they managed to jury rig back across the Drake Passage to the Falklands to get a new one.

He has made fifteen Atlantic crossings, mostly by the meanest of them all, Scotland to Greenland direct. He has visited Greenland and arctic Canada thirteen times, mainly sailing and climbing from the boat in Tilman style - he has been called ‘the modern Tilman’ - and has acted as Arctic Adviser on superyachts.

He made a double transit of the North West Passage, in 2012 / 2013, the only GRP boat to have done so.

Awards have included the Blue Water Medal, the Tilman Medal, the Goldsmith Medal for Exploration and the Barton Cup.  He was voted Yachtsman of the Year 2013. He also received a Piolet d’Or in 2011 with his team of top flight climbers for their Greenland 2010 expedition.

He writes occasionally for Sailing Today and Yachting Monthly and has written a book ‘Addicted to Adventure’ published by Adlard Coles, Bloomsbury. Bob lives with his wife at Appin on the west coast of Scotland, with extended family nearby.

Joey Gough

joey.jpgJoey is in his 70s.  He bought his first sailing dinghy when he was 16, funded by the profits from breeding budgerigars. He joined the University Air Squadron at St Andrews in 1966, and went on to serve 12 years in the RAF. This included 2 tours flying the Lightning on which he accumulated over 1000 hrs.  He then worked in industry for 20 years before taking early retirement and moving to the West of Scotland.  He married Verna in 1970 and they have two children, one of whom lives in Denmark, and the other in Australia. (“We think it might have been something we said!”)  They have 4 grandchildren.

Besides his sailing in Scotland and Scandinavia. Joey has cruised and raced in Australia including racing Sydney-Hobart, several Melbourne-Hobart, Melbourne-Vanuatu and the big one, Melbourne-Osaka.

Joey has been involved in the management of sailing in Oban Bay for over 20 years. He has spent many years on the committees of both Royal Highland Yacht Club and Oban Sailing Club, and is a past Commodore of both. He is a director of Oban Bay Community Berthing Ltd.

He was diagnosed with Prostate cancer in 2010, and underwent surgery and radiotherapy. The good news is that he is clear of cancer, but the bad news is that there was a lot of collateral damage from the radiotherapy. This makes life difficult, especially on a small boat.

Twig Olsen

twig.jpgTwig is in his 60s.  He started sailing dinghies at the age of 11 and progressed through a wide range of keelboats, from Flying Fifteens and Dragons to 50 foot offshore racing boats.  He completed his Yachtmaster Ocean at the age of 22, originally for skippering Ocean Youth Club Boats.

Twig studied engineering at university and was then recruited by Rolls Royce aero engines, after which he moved back to the family sawmill business at Taynuilt.

In 2005 he went to full time boating activities, and now spends his time managing, maintaining, delivering and skippering recreational yachts.

He is married with two children Alistair and Lorna, and anticipates being a grandfather before the BBC Children in Need event.

Christine McFarlane-Slack

christine.jpgChristine is in her 50s.  She had an early introduction to boating. She was just 2 when her father bought Fulmar, a 30 foot clinker built ex-naval pinnace.

Christine was introduced to sailing when her father decided to make sails for Fulmar as a backup in case of engine failure, which was an annual summer holiday occurrence! There followed many family adventures from their base next to where Craobh Haven is now, motor sailing northwest to Stornoway and southwest to Rathlin Island.

Fulmar was retired in the late 70’s so Christine was land bound for a few years until her enthusiasm for the sea and learning to sail led to her taking a dinghy sailing course. She was then invited into keelboat racing initially as ‘ballast’. Christine continued to learn and compete on a number of keelboats however, she spent most of her time racing as permanent crew on Redwing, a Trapper 28, which successfully competed at West Highland Week, winning their Class three years in a row as well as winning their Class at Scottish Series in 2012.

Christine has also sailed in the Mediterranean and in Norway (on Tangle o’ the Isles) where there were even more adventures including being ‘pooped’!

Christine was an active member of Glencoe Boat Club for many years and was Commodore for two years. She is also a member of Royal Highland Yacht Club.

Christine is married with one daughter. The family own Trebizond, a Legend 34 which is based on Loch Leven.

Originally trained as a Registered General Nurse specialising in pre-hospital trauma care, she now works for the Scottish Government in an advisory role promoting the use of technology to improve access to health and social care.