A former owner of Stormy Weather, Paul Adamthwaite, has written extensively about her history, and much of what he has written can be found at www.stormy.ca.

Below is an extract, describing her first racing victories in 1935 in the Transatlantic Race and Fastnet.


Transatlantic Race

The Crew

“After a short 1934 shakedown season, Philip Le Boutillier entrusted Rod Stephens with the job of skippering Stormy Weather in the 1935 Transatlantic Race. For crew, Rod appointed the owner’s son, Phil Jr.; Everard C. "Ducky" Endt, who had raced the 1928 Transat aboard the Alden schooner, Mohawk, and in the 1931 race aboard George Roosevelt’s Sherman Hoyt-designed schooner, Mistress; Professor Ken Davidson, who had never before raced offshore; Edward "Plugety" Foster, an expert radio operator and a veteran of the 1931 Mistress crew; navigator Chick Larkin, veteran of the 1928 Transpac on Mollilou and a couple of Bermuda races; and Joe Blagdon, a very keen young man who wanted to sail with Rod and who volunteered that he was a "cook" when he heard that it was the only crew position open. Joe told me in 1981 that he learned how to cook very fast, but whatever the quality, Rod always insisted that they got three hot meals a day. Joe also learned to play the mouth organ in order to accompany two accordions (Rod and Ducky), two other harmonicas (Ken and Phil),

Stormy WeatherCourtesy of Sparkman and Stephens

a tin whistle (Plugety), and a guitar and kazoo (Chick). Contemporary comments on the orchestral qualities have gone unrecorded, but Rod later said that they were in the same key - most of the time. The crew’s average age was not a day over twenty-five, but the experience, courage, and will to win were unbeatable.

The small, private edition Between Cut Water and Wake by Charles Larkin published in 1937, is the navigator’s recollections of this race. He starts, "A race that has been sailed two years past is not news. Those who lived between cut water and wake have gone. That is the way with ships, but for those who have left her there are memories: a fight for an offing on the Nova Scotia coast, fog and the ice it hid off Cape Race, the business of the Westerlies in the North Atlantic, whole nights of twilight, a drifter in the North Sea fogs manned by descendants of my ancestors who didn’t believe us when we answered their hail, ‘Stormy Weather eighteen days out of New York’, and the very satisfying recollection that you have sailed in a Transatlantic race winner."


 

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