The Bellerive Yacht Club would like to congratulate all the winners in the 2016 Tasmanian Hall of Fame and Yachting Achievement Awards that were held at the BYC last Sunday.
We would especially like to congratulate Hughie Lewis for being named Yachting Personality of the Year
Here is his citation:
Hughie Lewis took up keelboat racing in the mid 1980s after a successful career in competition water skiing. About the same time his business Lewis Marine took off, catering for all areas of recreational boating in Tasmania.
His extensive knowledge of the Tasmanian recreational and professional marine industry is demonstrated by the fact that Hughie is currently a member of the Board of Directors for MAST. Marine and Safety Tasmania (MAST) is a statutory authority that was established on 30 July 1997 to ensure the safe operation of vessels (recreational and commercial), provide and manage marine facilities and manage environmental issues relating to vessels.
Over a long period of time, Hughie has contributed at the highest level to all aspects of sailing at the Bellerive Yacht Club and the general sailing scene in Tasmania. He has been awarded life membership at the Bellerive Yacht Club and year in and out, he continues to contribute untiringly. He is currently a member of the BYC General Committee and is very actively involved in the Crown Series, Sponsorship and Marina Committees. This year, like many previous years, Hughie continues to be the driving force in attracting sponsorship for sailing events. The Crown Series Bellerive Regatta would not be possible without his crucial support.
He has generously sponsored many Bellerive Yacht Club racing series and events. Hughie saw the potential of the Wednesday evening twilight races from the very beginning. His name has become synonymous with this event over the past three decades. Without fuss he has put up the sponsorship, assisted with race management, competed regularly aboard his own boats and crewed for others. Most importantly he made sure twilight prize giving ceremonies are always fun and inclusive. The high level of Hughie’s involvement in this event is definitely one of the reasons why the twilight series has become one of the most successful ways to attract new people to sailing.
Hughie is at his best when on the microphone. His ability to engage his audience has transformed many a mundane prize giving session. He is renowned for throwing in the odd, slightly dubious, joke. At these occasions he always encourages participation, for example, the BYC Ladies Twilight Race days are now becoming mainstream, rather than one off novelty event.
It is fair to say Hughie has owned many racing keelboats over the years, from production cruiser racers right through to the one design Farr 40 class. More recently he has been competing in the SB20 class as well as living aboard his Princess 57 motor cruiser on the BYC marina. His ability as a helmsman was demonstrated at the recent SB20 nationals where he came third in the first heat, beating many high profile crews in a hotly contested fleet run by the Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron.
In conclusion, Hughie Lewis has generously supported the sport of sailing over three decades. He has always been prepared to step forward when there is work to be done and he sits on countless committees. His contribution to sailing is not confined to one yacht club.
This year, as has been the case for many decades now, Hughie has continued to contribute at the very highest level to all aspects of yachting in Tasmania. He has been active as a competitor and boat owner, a member of numerous committees and a major sponsor to many sailing events. His charismatic nature and genuine desire to improve yachting makes Hughie an extremely worthy nomination for the Yachting Tasmania Personality of the Year award.