When Jim Flood took the helm of his new Riviera 3600 Sport Yacht for the first time, the sprightly 89-year-old said it made him feel young again.
Riviera dealer R Marine Jacksons delivered the sparkling new Sport Yacht this month, which was an early birthday present for Jim who will celebrate his 90th birthday on August 13.
“I feel young again. Boating is my life and when I am out on the water I feel that I am still alive. If I didn’t have a boat I think I would wither away,” Jim said.
“Bob Jackson from R Marine Jacksons has been very helpful. I went out in his 3600 when he first bought it and I liked it very much so I thought I would buy one too.
“We are very delighted with our new 3600. I like the air-conditioning and the joystick with IPS, which is a great advantage coming into the pen.
“I have always owned boats, I can’t get them out of my brain. The best part of my life has been boating. My father had boats and it’s been ingrained into me.”
Jim recalls the times he went boating with his father on board a 30 foot Ketch, which was built by JJ Savage and Sons.
“Jack Savage was a friend of my fathers and we used to go to Refuge Bay in the Ketch,” Jim said.
“Old Jack Savage taught me to splice rope (which is when you join two ropes together by interweaving their strands), I was only about 15 or 16 but it has come in very handy for making up mooring ropes for different boats.”
Jim enjoys cruising around the Bay area and has been a member of the Sandringham Yacht Club for 52 years.
As his 90th birthday approaches, Jim looks forward to celebrating on board with his wife, Betty and his three sons David, Ronald and John.
“Our first cruising trip was to Docklands, (which is located in Victoria harbour, which has 30 hectares of parklands and promenade, as well as easy access to the CBD, retail shopping precinct, cafes, restaurants, boutique shops and convenience stores). It was very nice and comfortable. It was bit rough coming back but the boat handled the sea very well,” Jim said.
“It’s a very comfortable boat and I like having the galley up on the saloon level for single level living. It’s so easy to get on and off the boat and you don’t have to climb up any ladders or stairs, which is good for me as I have had two hip replacements and a pace maker. I don’t venture too far from the Bay now and I always have one of my sons with me.
“The boat is very easy to manoeuvre with the joystick and I am very pleased with it.”
One of Jim’s favourite cruising destinations is Western Port Bay, which is the second largest bay in Victoria opening into Bass Strait. Phillip Island and French Island dominate the bay, which is home to three Marine National parks.