The Adventures of Chas from Tas

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There’s not a Yachtsman in Asia (and for that matter, most of the Blue Water sailing ports of the World) who doesn’t know of and recognise the legendary ‘Chas from Tas’, one of the World’s greatest living mariners. Those who may not have had the opportunity of sailing with Chas, will certainly know him from the yacht clubs, marinas and (especially) bars, scattered around the World at all the places where the Yachties hang out.

Title photo provided by Richard John Blundell.

ChasfromTas5He first went to sea aged twelve and in his more than half a century of sailing he’s racked up enough miles to go to the moon and back – and back to the moon again. And as those of us who know him and love him are aware, he has a hilarious story for every one of those miles. He’s sailed on National Teams at International Events for six countries, he’s dodged typhoons and pirates, he was on board Simon LeBon’s maxi-boat ‘Drum’ when the keel fell in the 1989 Fastnet and he’s dated Britt Eklund (these events were not necessarily related). Kings, Princes and Rajahs, not to mention the most accomplished sailors on the planet call him ‘my mate Chas’ – one of the most colourful and entertaining sailing characters to arise in the latter half of the 20th Century – he is one of a very few delivery skippers who Lloyd’s of London will insure.

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Photo taken in 1980

“You should write a book, Chas,’ people have been saying to him for decades. Well, he has. It took him ten years and it couldn’t have happened without the good offices of his co- Author and amanuensis, Juliet ‘Fruity’ Prentice, daughter of the late John Prentice of Battlecry fame. Recently Chas was in Hong Kong and was the star attraction at a ‘Speaker’s Corner’ at the RHKYC where he read three Chapters of his forthcoming book (expected out in October). It was the largest attendance at a Speaker’s Corner in RHKYC history and the main lawn was filled with rapt attendees, who alternatively laughed, cried, and laughed again as Chas gave them a taste of what is surely going to be one of the best-selling Yachting memoirs ever. He’s a great public speaker and we were treated to an excellent evening. We’ll be getting him to narrate his own audio books.

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In Malta after Middle Sea Race on ‘Immigrant’ 1981. Provided by Mark ‘the Kid’ Maltby.

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The Agent is considering contacting Jonny Depp to play Chas in the movie adaption (under negotiation). Who else could accurately portray a man who has been described as making Keith Richards look like Doris Day? ‘The Adventures of Chas from Tas’ promises to become a modern classic of sailing literature. In fact, a pledge, by the local Agent, of the absolute first copy off the presses (suitably inscribed by the Author), raised HK$12,000 at the San Fernando Charity Auction in May.

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Outside Drunken Admiral in Hobart with Peter ‘Fletch’ Fletcher, 2013 Hobart. Photo by Beth Wilson.

Well folks, the presses are about to roll and there is one last chance of securing your first edition at what is likely to be a concessionary price. Up to date details of the publication can be found on the Chas from Tas Facebook Page which also has a link to the Publisher’s Order Page. A portion of the proceeds of all sales to Yacht Club Members worldwide will go to two registered Charities: Tracy Edwards’ ‘Maiden Rescue’ and ‘Lotus Outreach International’. We’re still working on details of the Official Book Launch which is expected to be in HK at RHKYC some time in October. We hope to get it to coincide with one of the major regattas during that time frame.

Words by Ian Dubin

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