Linda won the Sidney and Gladys Stovold cup on Saturday 12 th October. Alan Luckhurst was second, George third. Prizes were presented by Tory assisted by Archie the club’s youngest member.
Linda won by a very big margin thanks to determination and shrewd tactical planning. Unlike many of Saturdays competitors she had read the race fixture card and saw that it was a 220 yard race and had also established where the turning marker buoys were for this event. Many other competitors were not as prepared and stopped to chat after 110 yards not realising until it was too late to recover lost time that they had only completed half the distance.
Sidney Stovold had been a highly competitive spring board diver in his youth and demonstrated this gymnastic ability by regularly walking from the Serpentine changing room to the boards on his hands and then elegantly flipping into the water to race. He joined the Club in the late 1950s and on returning post race to his home in Acton in 1962 was found dead by his wife Gladys when she brought him a cup of tea. He died aged 51. Gladys presented the cup in his memory for many years and is remembered for being a small elegant woman reminiscent of the older ladies that starred in Ealing Comedy films. She would invariably wear gloves and a clear plastic rain hood as traditionally it always rains for this race.(Saturday was no exception). On her death she left the Club a substantial sum of money in her will.
Tory has sponsored this race since 2011. She joined the Club in 2008 and in 2011 completed a Lake Zurich swim the following year she swam the Channel in a highly respectable time of 12 hours 14 minutes and 10 seconds. In 2015 she swam and the challenging Rotteness Island event in Australia. Tory’s son Archie, currently the Clubs youngest member, accompanied his mother at the prize giving. Jonny, Archie’s dad is also a Serpentine member and is the great nephew of Barney Miller a former member who will be known to older Club swimmers.