On the 27th June 1971, 'Easy Rider' set off from Putney, London with 31 other boats, at the start of the Putney - Calais - Putney powerboat race. Due to extreme weather conditions that year, 'Easy Rider', driven by Keith Dallas with Frank Tobet navigating, was the only boat to complete the full course, successfully returning from Calais, while the majority of the fleet were held back in Ramsgate. Despite this achievement, the boat was placed second overall after the organisers re-arranged a new race from Ramsgate back to Putney.
This year we will be re-running the London - Calais race route to raise £10,000 for the charity 'Children with Cancer UK'. We need your support; you can donate by clicking:
27th June 1971, Keith Dallas and Frank Tobert in 'Easy Rider', an Avenger 21, the only boat to complete the full Putney - Calais - Putney course.
January 2017, Keith Dallas at the London Boat Show, re-united with 'Easy Rider' after 46 years!
Eddie Perk at the London Boat Show. Eddie rebuilt the boat after a fire in the late '70s and raced it under the name 'Piper'.
BBC 2's 'Great Pottery Throw Down' judge Keith Brymer Jones
helps to launch the charity appeal at the Clock Tower on Herne Bay seafront.
We are extremely grateful for the support Keith has given.
Saturday, 17th June 2017, almost 46 years to the day 'Easy Rider' took part in the 1971 London-Calais-London race, the boat returned to the sea following a major rebuild. Conditions were perfect, with a flat sea and plenty of boats to assist should things go wrong. As you would expect, there were one or two teething troubles that the trial highlighted, mainly due to carburettor tuning and ventilation. The boat perfomed well, with the engine reaching 5000 rpm
The minor problems will be addressed and the boat should be back in the water shortly to continue the trials, building up endurance and speed. One piece of equipment which came in very handy was the NASA marine, exhaust temperature monitor, which very quickly highlighted an engine cooling problem. We were also grateful for the icom marine radios, which helped communitations between the boat and shore party.
We were contacted by John Boardman from Whitmore Coins Tokens and Medallions, who had in his possession a coin featuring an Avenger powerboat. The brass coin measures 23mm, which is about the same as a 2p coin. On the obverse it has the wording 'Avenger Success' and a picture of an Avenger boat crossing the finishing line. On the reverse it has the wording 'Boat of the Show Award 1970' and has 15 pennants, each one showing the year and the race, e.g. '1969 Putney Calais', '1969 Round Britain'. We would be very intersted to hear from anyone who knows anything about this coin.