MBY man can't stop grinning after North Sea blast

MBY correspondent Derek Wynans was positively exuberant after an 80mph ride at the front of the fleet on the boat leading the Round Britain Powerboat Race.

Derek, 35, of Oban, has spent today’s 210 mile leg on LionHead, a 36ft Goldfish RIB made in Norway.

The boat is a prototype and its crew of Pal and Henrik Sollie and Dorset man James Sydenham have won the respect of the entire fleet, taking some by surprise after a low-key build-up to the race.

Derek, speaking from the quayside in Edinburgh, said: “What a machine. Phenomenal.

“We only hit 80mph today. She wasn’t running absolutely flat out.

“What a piece of kit. So well put together and so well designed. The crew are very nice guys, very professional and very well sorted. It’s almost a military operation to them.

“We had a fantastic start. We were running second or third, side by side with Racing Silverline for about a mile, both boats leaping out of the water. It was beautiful.

“We had a good fight with Silverline but a couple of wires shorted out and started smouldering so we stopped and sorted that out.

“The sea wasn’t wild but it was uncomfortable. It made for an interesting ride. We spent a lot of time in the air.

“I slept funny last night and woke up this morning with a stiff shoulder. I thought no more of it until we got about an hour into the leg, when at that speed it felt like my arm was going to fall off.

“Later on we noticed our EPIRB had come out of its bracket and was rattling around on the floor. What we didn’t realise was it had gone off.

“So apparently there was some concern from the coastguard that an EPIRB had gone off and was travelling at 80mph.

“For a while we were running alongside Blue FPT, which by the way is another beautiful boat.

“Coming down the home straight we piled on the beans and we made it past Silverline, only to be boarded by local police after we crossed the finish line on account of our EPIRB going off and worrying everyone.

“Just as Silverline crossed the finish line they had engine problems, so they got towed in by the police boat.

“They left an officer behind with us who enjoyed his high speed RIB ride quite a lot!”

Final results are still to come in but LionHead was third or fourth, meaning she retains her position at the head of the fleet, with three legs still to run.

www.goldfishboat.com